[caption id="attachment_110048" align="alignleft" width="150"] Construction of Palencia—which incorporates systems designed to keep energy, operating, and maintenance costs down—wrapped up this summer.[/caption]

When students entered Palencia Elementary School in St. Augustine, Fla., for the first time in late August, they stepped into a high-tech, futuristic school focused on environmental sustainability.

About 500 kindergarten through fifth-grade students crossed the xeriscaped campus of St. Johns County’s newest school, which will emphasize a science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) curriculum.

“We want to make the building a teaching tool,” Principal Don Campbell said.

Palencia incorporates systems...

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