England To Ban Schools From Having Curves

quebec gatineauForget flipping your classroom or even your flipping your school. It’s time to completely change what schools look like in a very literal sense. England’s Education Secretary has passed a law that would ban the use of curves in the design of new school buildings.

What’s Banned

Secretary Gove says that new school designs are not allowed to use the following: dog legs, curves, indents, notches, roof terraces, glazed walls, and translucent plastic roofs.

This move to keep schools as simple as possible comes as administrators say there’s been too much spending in England on school architecture. To me, this brings to mind the innovative school design in Sweden that has the edtech world still buzzing.

261 Renovations

In any case, the move comes just before the government begins renovating 261 secondary and primary schools in need of repair. Each renovation will apparently be as affordable as possible with a focus on simple and functional spaces. The goal is to have a template that can be used for all schools rather than crafting a new design strategy for each structure.

According to Secretary Gove, the new designs will be low-cost, modular, and smaller (about 15% smaller than current buildings). Gove says this will save about £6 million per school in the future.

What It Means

So the money saved is a big help to the economy. But what of the effect this move will have on the teaching environments? What of the students and teachers who will be faced with having to make the most of less space?

Personally, I wouldn’t be surprised if this type of plan takes hold in many more countries as governments look to downsize costs associated with education even more. The logical next step, therefore, is to do away with physical classrooms and start preparing for the ‘classroom of the future’ which is essentially all online. Only time will tell.

Image of Gatineau Québec

2 Comments

  1. ICAL TEFL

    October 25, 2012 at 5:07 am

    The man is floundering and is making enemies left right and centre with his half-baked policies. In this particular case, has he never heard of the concept of an environment which is actually conducive to learning? He is helping to bring education to its knees in the UK.

  2. Steve

    October 25, 2012 at 7:06 am

    “Little boxes, little boxes, all made out of ticky tacky
    Little boxes all the same.”
    The right honourable member only thinks in terms of his own experience. Hence his attachment to Greek and Latin and even Ancient Hebrew. I went to a Primary School that had outdoor toilets underneath the playground(still in existence in the 1970′s), thankfully Gove was not at school with me.
    What is more worrying is the fact that he and his minions see education as the imparting of facts not the acquisition of skills.
    Still if we as a nation are content to trust a PR man to be premier, having an ex-News International headline writer as education secretary is no more than we deserve