The master plan of the school should be built around the classroom – rest of the facilities and rooms are built with the classroom at the core of school design.
Educational philosophy of the management
The ancillary rooms like the art room craft room and other facilities need to be designed keeping in mind the education philosophy of the management. For example, if dramatics are to be stressed then an auditorium, amphitheatre etc will form a part of the core design. Similarly different education focus may be in IT, art, vocational education etc. The arrangement of these blocks should be done considering the daily schedule of the pupils and accordingly placed so that there is efficient use of their time and time is not wasted in commuting from one part of the school to another.
Cost of construction
The simpler the design the less the cost. Fancy and ornamental things should only be used to create a pleasant environment beyond that if any expenditure has not educational value as well it should be avoided.
Adaptable to future changes in education
Further, it is not about today – the management should have a long term vision of what schools will be in the future and accordingly design to accommodate these needs. It is not only expensive to renovate a building but also very difficult as children and their safety has to be considered and the fact that most schools are full to capacity ! The only time a school may be remodeled is the 45 days summer break – which makes it impossible to carry out major repairs through the lifetime of the school.
Orientation of the school
The orientation of the building should be such that natural light and ventilation are maximized while protecting the children from harsh weather as well. For example, North East facing windows will prevent direct sunlight thereby reducing cooling costs.
Variety of learner and learning’s
The school design should also be such that it accommodates the multi-dimensional learning needs of a variety of learners- each of whom may have their own pace of learning.
Caters to a variety of sizes
Further, as a school may cater to 2 years to 17 years old to adult teachers- the design has to be such that all these children are comfortable. The younger ones need their colorful spaces, smaller furniture and the older ones need areas which they can relate to – benches, IT stations etc.
Finally, the school should be welcoming and inviting for the children. It should be colorful and yet not distracting.
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