News

Can Construction Companies Contribute to Education?

Construction companies play a vital role in the implementation of unique and inspirational design to education spaces; responsible for ensuring buildability and durability of the design and materials.

Students of all levels generally tend to spend most of their time in and around their schools, which has twin implications, first on their willingness and ability to absorb new knowledge in the short term, but also on their long-term cognitive ability, beyond their immediate school experience.

While much of this might be intuitive, it is also backed by solid research. The University of Salford’s report on the Holistic Evidence and Design (HEAD project) study on “Clever Classrooms” concludes that as much as 16% of variations in learning progression as observed by the study, could be traced to differentials in classroom construction and design.

The implication, as we have always believed at Jerram Falkus, is that the design and construction of education buildings must receive more attention, with an emphasis on high-quality design.

The Top 6 Elements Construction Companies Must Focus on in School Design

Following on from the results of the HEAD study, six identified elements contribute to effective school design as follows:

Daylight

Increased lighting helps to keep students alert, and receptive to information. Lighting is strongly influenced by the construction and can be optimised by skilled construction companies.

Indoor Air Quality

Similarly, indoor air quality is strongly dependent on the quality of construction.

Acoustic Environment

Effective noise control can be a crucial factor that aids students in focusing and being more receptive to knowledge. An example of how this can be addressed at our Hounslow Town Primary School project located directly under the Heathrow flight path.

Temperature

Extremes of hot and cold are proven to be sub-optimal for learning, reflecting in lower test scores, poor retention, and a lack of energy. As temperature control is strongly linked to building construction, this is another important way that construction affects learning. Our St Benedict’s project is an example of a low energy building built to Passivhaus standards.

Classroom Design

Unconventional design features that promote space, the proximity between learners and teachers, broad wall space with room for artistry, are all factors of good classroom design. In addition to these, students should be able to express some ownership over the space.

Stimulation

The clever manipulation of colours, shapes, and other elements of design can help to stimulate the mind and prime students of all ages for optimal learning. This was demonstrated at our SEMH School project EKO Pathways in Newham.

The Role We Play

At Jerram Falkus, we have a rich history of delivering education spaces. One particular project that demonstrates our abilities to meet the standards and principles provided within the Clever Classrooms report is the St Christopher’s Hospice, Learning Hub project.

Key St Christopher’s Hospice deliverables:

  • A flexible lecture room with a capacity which can be divided up into three smaller spaces to accommodate smaller groups;
  • A creatively designed multi-purpose foyer;
  • A modern lab for practical skills training;
  • E-learning and personal study space in addition to functional telecommunication capabilities, to enhance access to national and global learning and networking opportunities.

To learn more about our contributions to construction in the education sector, visit our projects page. If you would like to learn more about Jerram Falkus, book an appointment, or simply enquire, please contact us right away.

Back