Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Redesigning Education: Rethinking the School Corridor

Discussing education reform, this article's hallway as important design element thesis is compelling, especially due to our own recent design and remodeling endeavor, and our history of value engineering (read: cutting) positive design elements -- like skylights -- out of the final product.

Some of the comments left by the article's readers are noteworthy, seeing the above school corridor image as prison-like. At Grand Ledge, we were more interested in selling our bond proposal on the theory of buses and egress than on physical issues, such as ambient light, or real world issues of student achievement. I recall a visit to the new Williamston High School, which very well succeeded at
Adding furniture, nooks, information portals and views into classrooms, or the outdoors will invite students and visitors to slow down and interact in new ways - to learn in the places that were formerly strictly for transport.
Our much-criticized new entrance is a step in the direction of what's being quoted above, and achieved in the photo at right, but many schools and districts are constrained by legacy buildings and designs, where hallways populate conflict and lockers, not learning. And leave it to the Europeans to really move school design forward with this example from Hellerup Denmark:

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