Part of the West St. Paul-Mendota Heights-Eagan Area Independent School District (ISD) 197, Heritage E-STEM serves approximately 800 middle school students in grades 5-8. The school exemplifies ISD 197’s commitment to “creating spaces that are geared towards collaboration and discovery.”

Students, teachers and staff of the newly renovated and expanded Heritage E-STEM Magnet School are experiencing brighter, quieter, more modern learning spaces created with Rockfon’s acoustic stone wool ceiling systems. Their challenging coursework requires an outstanding learning environment, including optimal and comfortable acoustics, healthy indoor air quality, and efficient lighting levels.

Minneapolis-based Lawal Scott Erickson (LSE) Architects, Inc. specified Rockfon stone wool ceiling panels, suspension systems and perimeter trim as the basis of design for the school. Delivering high sound absorption with a bright white, smooth surface, Rockfon Tropic has a Noise Reduction Coefficient (NRC) of up to 0.85. Acoustics have been found to play a critical role in learning, contributing not only to clear communication and understanding between students and teachers, but also concentration, attentiveness, staff job satisfaction and student test scores. Using ceiling products with higher NRC ratings also can help with cost savings because fewer sound-absorbing products, furnishings and finishes need to be installed to reach the rooms’ acoustic requirements.

Watch a construction video for Heritage E-STEM Magnet school here.

Heritage E-STEM Magnet School

West St. Paul, MN

More than 53,000 square feet of Rockfon’s products were installed throughout Heritage E-STEM’s Magnet School within the classrooms, staff break room, staff and counseling offices, conference rooms, library, cafeteria, the stairwells, hallways and other common areas. In the existing building, many of the dated, fissured, lower-performance ceiling tiles were replaced with Rockfon Tropic, providing both a visual and audible improvement.

Rockfon Sonar with an exceptionally high NRC of 0.95 was chosen for the new music rooms where best-level sound absorption was needed. Rockfon Chicago Metallic ceiling suspension systems’ modular framework also supported fast, accurate installation of the stone wool panels in the newly constructed school expansion.

Enhancing the school’s ideal look and sound, the cafeteria and common connection points feature curved, custom-shaped, suspended ceiling clouds that seem to float above these multi-purpose spaces. The suspension grid and perimeter trim are finished to match the white panels for a neat, clean appearance.

Reinforcing indoor environmental quality, healthy interiors and student/faculty wellness, stone wool does not support the growth of mold, mildew or other microorganisms, and naturally resists water, moisture, humidity and fire. Reducing airborne contaminants lessens the risk for health concerns, irritability and loss of concentration amongst students and staff. Rockfon’s stone wool ceiling panels are UL® GREENGUARD® Gold Certified for low chemical emissions.

Along with high sound absorption and good indoor air quality, the ceiling panels’ high light reflectance also contributes to the school’s energy efficiency as part of ISD 197’s LiveGreen sustainability program. The bright white surface of Heritage E-STEM’s new Rockfon ceiling panels maximizes and diffuses the available light, reflecting 85% of the light into the school’s interior.


Heritage E-STEM Magnet School

Location:West St. Paul, Minnesota, United States
Architect:Lawal Scott Erickson (LSE) Architects, Inc.; Minneapolis, Minnesota
Contractor:Rochon Corporation; Osseo, Minnesota
Installer:Architectural Sales of Minnesota, Inc; Brooklyn Center, Minnesota
Photographer:©Randy Hoepner Photography, LLC
Tiles:Rockfon Sonar®, Rockfon Tropic®, Rockfon® Infinity™ Engineered Perimeter Trim
Grids:Chicago Metallic® 1200 15/16"