Logistics Trends

Creating environments that support and facilitate the minimisation of waste and unproductive effort in the supply chain has become an increasingly significant logistics trend in Australia today. One result of this has been the integration of considered architectural design throughout the planning and construction of distribution facilities. This growing inclination is being reflected in the commercial property market where greater planning time is being assigned to projects at the initial developmental stages in order to create long lasting benefits to the building owners and tenants. In particular there is increased consideration given to logistical processes. Organisations at the forefront of this approach no longer view buildings housing such operations simply as µsheds¶ devoid of any complexity or intelligence. Instead, the building is viewed as a contributing factor to the productive operation of their core business. Collaboration, for them, involves the engagement of architects and planners at the initial stages of project delivery. In the past architects were not engaged until after sites had been chosen, briefs written and budgets allocated, if at all. However, an architect¶s full service not only allows for earlier engagement, but offers it as an integral element in obtaining the best service. The most successful projects are those that ultimately reduce costs, time and waste from the supply chain process. Buildings are an integral part of any supply chain. The architectural challenge is to develop a strategy that is inclusive, understands the client¶s business operation, and provides added value through quality and flexible facilities. The logistics trend now being seen begins with advice on site selection followed by a master plan. This then leads to considered design and construction of the built facilities. Well planned facilities not only support successful logistics operations but also provide flexibility for future expansion. Moreover, they add to the stock of quality industrial/ commercial buildings and raise the standard of the workplace environment. The industrial sector is an intelligent, mature and dynamic market with increasingly sophisticated user requirements. Additionally, the rising cost of construction has meant that industrial properties are being considered as both quality real estate and an essential investment in the future of any business. In order to maximise the long term potential of industrial buildings, flexibility and adaptability must be built into the preliminary design to meet changing operational demands. This makes industrial building design and construction a complex process, even for modest projects. As such, it is essential to maximise the benefit from the investment. The initial brief development, site selection and master planning phases are the key determinants in the success of any project. Appropriate site selection is the first step and can predetermine future planning success. Aspects to be considered include access to transportation networks, road types, orientation and allowance for possible future expansion.

Additionally, locating an industrial building within reach of associated businesses and customers will also have long-term advantages. This is one reason for the increasing popularity of business parks. Another is the positive effect that they have on the lifestyle of business workers. Social and common facilities such as cafes, banks and even child-care centres improve the lifestyle of the workplace, the proximity of essential services making life easier for the workforce. The early analysis and well considered master planning of a site helps to reduce costs, wastage and time loss in the future, not only in terms of the design of industrial buildings, but also in relation to strategic property requirements.Architects are also able to design a building that responds aesthetically to the business¶corporate brand. This is especially important on significant sites where clients want to express their corporate brand visually. However, in relation to materials handling, it is the logistics solution that comes first and from which a building¶s form emerges. Once the site is selected, it is the considered master planning at the earliest stages that will have a long-term effect on the efficacy of the supply chain. Siting the building according to the movement of the sun can impact the building users in both positive and negative ways. It is important to minimise the glare of low angle sun off hard surfaces for truck and forklift drivers, through material choice and shading, while allowing entry of natural light into the building, especially in office areas. The architecture should also respond to the natural movement of air, whether high force winds or internal ventilation. The positioning of office buildings can minimise northerly winds entering the storage areas while the bulk of the building will block the stronger south-westerly winds. For this reason, the dock should face towards the eastern, leeward side of the building. The positioning of the building¶s main structure adds value to the project by reducing the impact of strong winds and air-borne dust, and using natural light to reduce energy costs.

Architecture Becomes the Sweet New Science

Long considered boffins and nerds, scientists have begun to take advantage of the power of architecture to raise their own profile and promote their work. Australian universities, in particular, have become active in engaging architecture to further the cause of science. Architecture is also fostering increased self-esteem within the scientific community. Great buildings contribute to great research. Local and international trends reveal that another consequence is more collaborative research as a result of better planned buildings. Scientists are being encouraged to build communication and connect with the wider community. A new generation of buildings is making this possible. These projects speak not only of technical rigour and sound investment, but provide kinder, more personable spaces than the sterile, anonymous box that largely left researchers to their own devices.

Architectus has emerged as one of the leading participants in this brave new world of architecture that brings a more human dimension to the world of nano-technologies and supersciences. The firm¶s extensive body of scientific laboratory work is hallmarked by a commitment to creating habitable spaces within iconic envelopes. Recent projects by the firm that demonstrate this trend include the Victorian Government¶s $200 million Australian Synchrotron, the Electron Microscope facility at Clayton, Victoria (which is part of Monash University¶s push to attract the world¶s leading researchers), and the new College of Pharmacy building in Royal Parade, Parkville. These projects demonstrate that cutting edge scientific work and humane, egalitarian workplaces are not mutually exclusive. In successful workplaces for the sciences, the design process must be integrated at a primary level. To achieve this, thorough design research must be undertaken from the very first stages of the project. This view is also held by Australian Synchrotron communications manager Stefanie Pearce. ³I was impressed that the entire staff of Architectus Melbourne was keen to engage with our project,´ she observes. ³They requested a presentation for their office after hours one evening. Everyone, from their IT people to the receptionist, wanted to understand the project and feel involved. That to me was a sign of a really cohesive team that demonstrated a pride and µownership¶ in each and every project.´ Typically laboratory buildings tended to be functional and did not include consideration of their occupants. For instance in the Synchrotron building, the brief called for no natural light and yet our observation after visiting European facilities was that natural light was possible and highly desirable for staff wellbeing. Good, functional laboratories are also humane spaces and this quality really emerges from a high level of client collaboration and understanding. I think one response from our clients would be that while they have engaged us, we have also engaged them in the design process. Once the client understands the rationale for your approach there is a much greater chance of acceptance. Conversely, as architects you need good antennae to be receptive to what the client can bring to the design. Buildings for the sciences are very refined in terms of their performance specifications. They really are analogous to building a Formula One racer. Everything has to work. The interest of universities and institutions in hard-working, good-looking research buildings is now much better understood. They are strong brands that cannot afford to be caught with second-rate goods. The collection of science buildings by Architectus to date displays a design approach which, without incorporating any extraneous elements, has eschewed the rigid, austere minimalism so prevalent in science buildings in the past. In this way, Architectus has defined a new modernism with its recent work that is warm and humane, and encourages a new, highly socialised way of working. By creating buildings with a striking public face, Architectus has provided the scientific community with a powerful visible presence. Whereas sciences were once plugged into the back of a university and simply used by a single department, they are now a focus of national and international attention with a far less secretive modus operandi. Synchrotron project director Ruth Wilson of Architectus says that science is now listening closely to architecture ± and vice versa. ³There¶s a new level of information sharing and scientists, by nature, are interested in this. It is refreshing, and sometimes challenging, dealing

they are looking at architecture to underpin their long-term strategic aims. The bottom line is that good science needs good architecture. What we have instead is something soaring. Science. We could have been lazy. Wilson notes that it is not uncommon to talk with scientists anywhere on the planet before putting pen to paper. These spaces are strategically located near the front entrance and are closely linked to the kitchen (which happens to open into a beautiful garden) and the library. and hidden the ductwork. Architectus undertakes extensive research. High ceilings can be uplifting and it is often those almost subconscious spatial moments that work ± it is a warm minimalism. ³We visited exemplary facilities in Europe and found scientists willing to share. The firm is strong on the notion of the collegiate/ communal space with a big.´ In some senses these new facilities can offer spaces reminiscent of the Gothic era. timber dining room table around which the scientific µfamily¶ gathers to discuss work that is under way. Scientists are very respectful of our skill base and they have a tendency to want to understand every aspect of what we do. has gone down this path because it wants to be the place of choice on the basis of its superior facilities.´ she says. you have the possibility of great partnership with good architects. it appears. The Synchrotron and Electron Microscope projects put a dynamic face to science but are as much about the fully layered work and social experience. for example. often including interviews with the broader scientific community. They expected growth from the organisational synergies we introduced but the view is that good architecture has delivered a tangible bottom line benefit. ³Sustainable design is intrinsic to our work. It is institutions that typically buy scientific buildings. yet we have shown it works. Architectus resisted taking the easy option. . It need not be dull or drab. dropped the ceiling. recyclable materials informs our approach. In labs you do not often have plywood walls for example. The ethereal feeling is quite palpable. We take a half a day of their time and question them and they follow up with e-mails and they will give you as much time as you need. and there is tremendous expertise and insight for the asking. It¶s definitely not just applied.´ Before commencing design of a new science building. There can be a certain element of theatre when there is so much that is exciting about science.with such enquiring minds. Once you have this shared strategic aim. We encountered great generosity of spirit in that process. Everything from emissions to energy efficient. its business having grown beyond expectation since it started operations from its Architectus rejuvenated premises less than 12 months ago. Even the client has been pleasantly surprised by the results. Work environments should be supportive. and as they become more experienced in their purchasing. Melbourne IVF exemplifies this well. The interesting thing is that they have very little to gain from the exchange. This approach to planning is consistent with Architectus¶ design philosophy regarding modern office and education design. This effectively connects social and work activity. The University of Melbourne. is finally discovering the elusive DNA of good design to be an investment that brings unexpected rewards.

Many of these were in the coastal zone and will not be rebuilt within 100 metres of the foreshore. 7/2/2005). thus giving greater flexibility to families who may have. 3/2/2005). Side-stepping these regulations can lead to potential long-term problems. as is evident in the case mentioned. medium and short term stays can all be catered for. Apparently this has nothing to do with the recent Tsunami disaster but rather reflects issues to do with the original design and construction. Australia and Sri Lanka highlight the diversity of educational infrastructure provision between our near Northern neighbours in Asia and ourselves here in Australia. It is heartening to read that every school which was completely destroyed will be rebuilt thanks to sponsorship by UNICEF and other international donors. Gone are the communal showers and Spartan conditions of yesteryear ± the need to toughen up the rural class! Boarding. some issues and concerns of school provision in Australia are very different. the recent natural disaster caused by the Tsunami tidal wave indicates a different cause of building failure. space and security¶ (West Australian. last minute business trips or other pressing family commitments. Regulations vary by location with some in high wind and earthquake zones being more stringent than regulations in other areas. One can only speculate on the structural strength of the school buildings which were affected by the Tsunami. 74 were completely destroyed (Khaleej Times. on the other hand. In a recent article in the West Australian. It is self evident that students do not learn as well (if at all) in high temperatures. Education Departments have not .¶ Interestingly. for example. µArchitects Without Frontiers¶ is an Australian organisation which has been involved with re-construction of devastated regions in Asia.Building for Learning A selection of recent press articles from Malaysia. It is also evident that the States of Queensland and New South Wales cannot afford to aircondition all their schools ± as Bob Carr commented. 29/1/2005). In Sri Lanka. (Sunday Telegraph. it was reported that some boarding schools are upgrading their facilities to reflect higher expectations of the parents . 21/1/05). 6/2/2005). Of course. µwe can¶t do it. in its various forms. Long. Student comfort has also been in the news recently with the subject of classroom air-conditioning being µaired¶ in Queensland and New South Wales (Australian. By comparison. it is Summer and this is the time when air-conditioning considerations come to mind. there was not a comment in the above articles relating to appropriate building designs which would cut down on the need for air-conditioning. sixteen schools and colleges have shown µserious structural defects¶ with one school being closed to students and staff indefinitely (New Straits Times. Of Sri Lanka¶s 176 schools subject to the forces of the Tsunami. we simply haven¶t got the money.the requirement for student µprivacy. is now a serious alternative for rural and city students. Appropriate design guidelines and building regulations should prevent this happening. In Malaysia.

Usually these schools were small and were defining buildings in the community. they became formidable buildings. in Western countries. very hot or humid places where air-conditioning is a necessary supplement to thoughtful design. retail strip centres and churches no longer have the influence they once had. There is a trade off. This shift in size. churches. paradoxically. Again. transport improvements and the development of information and communication technology have all taken their toll on the traditional community centres. A number of the defining community buildings have either disappeared or lost significance. On the cyclone wire fence surrounding the building there is a sign which reads ³Warning ± Trespasses Prosecuted. court houses. banks. But the message is not good. together with the introduction of the graded classroom and subject disciplines. I don¶t believe there is much evidence that our schools are indeed the centres of our communities. being in the heart of the residential areas. During and after the industrial revolution. at the same time. In the past 50 years. transformed schools into institutions supported by government bureaucracies.´ Signed: School Principal and Council. hospitals. For example banks. In many cases. let alone the active promotion of any relationship between school and the community. Too often it is remarked that these measures would increase capital costs of buildings beyond allocated budgets. when districts were being settled and towns and villages established. the centres of community were elsewhere and defined by shopping precincts and transport nodes. It challenges the frequently espoused slogan that our schools are the centre of community and. by implication. schools were often one of the first community facilities to be built. more and more parents are using the presence or not of air-conditioning as a selection criteria when choosing a school. excluding. . In the cities. it doesn¶t need to be this way. larger schools were established. they were often isolated and away from the perceived centres of community although. Schools and Communities Around the corner from my home in Melbourne is a primary school which has been there for over 60 years. towns and villages were defined by their physical buildings such as post offices. Certainly in pre-industrial times. As transport and communication linkages were sparse. It is still depressing to visit schools where classrooms have all the windows shut with the air-conditioning on. For some time this has struck me as the antithesis of the concept of schools as the centre of community. Economic rationalisation. These school premises are under electronic surveillance««. These structures created social centres which gave a strong sense of place. of course. there has been a transformation of many of the geographic centres of community. It is not hard to realize why this sign is there ± vandalism and µstranger danger¶ being two reasons which come immediately to mind. hotels and schools.embraced environmentally sustainable design until recent times. in the suburbs. are welcoming places. For many of the suburbs.

too. The newer independent schools have been strategically located in population hubs but again not always at the perceived centres of community. our communities are defined by our physical capital. Independent schools have always placed great value on the µfamily of the school¶ and benefit from the stronger ties ex-students have with their µold school. these days.¶ There are also work experience programmes and (in Victoria) the initiatives of VET and VCAL curricula. This. sterile classrooms do not enhance the learning attitude. students.¶ Well designed places and spaces within schools and in the community can assist greatly with all of these concepts. is a very current topic in educational literature. our human capital and also by our social capital ± the µglue¶ that holds us together. as opposed to a hierarchy of teachers and learners. There are now a myriad of µout of school¶ excursions. intimate spaces. The location of the older independent schools was more determined by transport routes and access to church property. At the same time there is a reverse trend for communities to be more involved with schools ± to take part in the governance of schools and to utilize the often under utilized school facilities. In many ways this boils down to an organizational issue. The end result is a strengthening of the presence of the school in the community. People will always gravitate to places where it simply µfeels good to be there¶. Peter Senge also talks about the learning community within the school. . The school community is defined as the teachers. This is easiest with sporting and performing arts facilities. Side walk cafes. parents working toward the enrichment of school life . The analogy of our students crossing the drawbridge each day to the island school where they supposedly learn the skills to operate on the mainland of life to which they return each night strikes many as a fallacy. constructivist learning ± whereby students learn by inquiry and doing rather than by passive listening and reading. Does all this matter and what is the significance of the relationship between schools and community in the knowledge age? There is much written and spoken today about the µre-integration of school and community. cosy courtyards. These programmes have developed from an underlying belief in the value of authentic. the answer to which may simply be the employment of additional facilities staff. institutional school is not the most appropriate model for our times.indeed. learning together. Whilst the physical place was vital for this to function in the past (pre transport and communication technology). working together.¶ This reflects an attitude that the isolationist. In the end. places with a view of colour and movement are all enjoyable. But if we are to progress with µlife long learning¶ for all. It is a greater challenge to extend this sharing to the more traditional learning spaces. many subjects being available in the workplace. Vast open spaces. camps and µtime in the country¶ programmes to µtake students away. then schools (particularly secondary schools and tertiary colleges) are a natural venue for this activity. we can communicate and function at the social level with greater ease and over greater distances.Independent schools were never a part of the governmental planning process as were state schools.

United Kingdom 28th. we have greater flexibility to learn and connect without being confined to place. In our post-modern era. In this way. Schools present this scenario. Rather. May. place is still important.Nevertheless. influences of information and communication technology and the employment requirements of the knowledge society have placed pressures and questions on the traditional provisions of education. Promoting the school as a learning community is one current theme. 2004 Andrew Bunting Architectus Melbourne andrew. our sense of community is different and easier to maintain. What designs can schools adopt to allow them to connect more readily with local community? How can school buildings contribute more to the school as a learning community? . We also need to connect physically with other people ± especially in the formative years. New purposes of schooling have evolved. It is good to return there occasionally. new understandings of learning. they reinforce the school as an isolated institution.com.bunting@architectus. We need to know who we are and understand where we came from. µForm follows Function¶ is not so clear or direct when there are multiple functions which buildings must serve.au Introduction A fundamental complexity of school design has always arisen due to the multiple and conflicting purposes for educational institutions. The majority of our school designs do not facilitate this concept. Secondary School Design for Purpose But Which One ? Paper Presented to the OECD Conference Creating 21 Century Learning Environments London. It shows when we don¶t ! But in the knowledge age.

emotional. Around 250 years ago they were looking to the mass education system to provide workers with good habits and discipline. that some of the most noble outcomes of schooling are immeasurable. Vocational and Self-fulfilment are considered academic. their intellectual. Vocational ± to training people for employment.¶ Self-control. 1998). such as µa love of reading. 2001) Beare and Slaughter cast the above four purposes into academic and non-academic states. social. 1993) Certainly. There is an important socialisation/nationalisation process at work as well. often via tertiary education. different stakeholders within the broader education system have different expectations. spiritual. In addition. moral and the physical development. there is an emphasis on the µholistic¶ development of students. to imbue local and national culture and to promote citizenship. this may emphasise the vocational purpose over the intrinsic purpose. (Sterling. that is. Socialization . Since the introduction of mass education. Transformative ± to provide equal opportunity for learning and to encourage change to a better world. Students and their parents desire individual success. the schools for the elite saw themselves as producing µmen of character. between socialisation and learning. At the same time. for example.¶ (Beare and Slaughter. Socialisation and Transformation are considered non-academic. Some academically-gifted students may have a more liberal attitude to the educational experience and will seek as much learning as possible. education systems have aligned to differing purposes ± often more than one at a time. For the majority of students and parents. governments have consistently striven for this. but their concept of µeducated¶ has undergone considerable change. Employers are also looking for an educated workforce. School Buildings Reflecting Purpose: Let us consider school design in the light of the four generally accepted purposes of schooling mentioned above.to develop individuals to their maximum potential. They note. discipline and sporting prowess took preference over academic learning. in many Western countries. (Matheson and Liamond. Generally the four common purposes are considered to be: y y y y Socialization ± to replicate society. music and art.Purposes of Schooling Throughout history. ethical. Self-fulfilment . psychological. the liberal function. Governments equate success with an educated workforce that will contribute to economic growth and promote good citizenship. Today employers are looking for team workers and problem solvers (Vick. in the process. In doing so it is important to be aware that there are overlaps and cross influences between purposes.1999).

Often such facilities are also available for community use. µCredentials inflation¶ has increased the entry requirements into many fields of employment. Students learning to inter-act with each other in a controlled environment is the is main reason advanced against home-schooling. they will be. Networks of schools and technical colleges have been formed to share this learning. technology as alternatives to the traditional academic subjects. Rather then have these students drop out of school all together. However. rather than necessarily conceiving of them as career alternatives. Nevertheless. Schools based on the house model and/or the studio model of learning.Schools designed to promote socialisation would address the concept of the community within the school as well as the relationship of the school to the external community. Schools which provide amenable places for informal gathering and learning. Generally. specialised facilities are required for these subjects and not all schools are able to provide for them. There is considerable importance attached to the socialisation purpose of schooling. Clearly. Societal and employment changes have had the dual effects of eliminating some avenues of employment at the same time as increasing the technical requirements of others. For example. in its various forms requires specialist facilities as does music and drama. the majority of students proceed to further tertiary qualifications before entering the workforce. . Sport. given the difficulty in obtaining University places and the concern about declining trade skills within society. Vocation Secondary schools no longer provide vocational accreditation. Moreover. These may be in Universities or technical colleges. Specific design features would include: y y y y y Schools which are not isolated but are geographically connected to the hubs of community. Self-Fulfilment Whilst self-fulfilment takes place through formal learning activities and socialisation at school. it is also facilitated by such activities as sport and performing arts. although for some. it is considered preferable to have them stay in formal education for as long as possible. Schools which provide for boarding or motel type accommodation. there is a return to applied learning in secondary schools with alternative pathways leading to the completion of year 12. there is a growing provision of applied learning in secondary schools to cater for students who are not suited to traditional academic learning. course are offered in areas such as hospitality. some would debate this. graphics. Schools which provide traditional or café type dining precincts. These extra-curricula subjects are offered in the interests of providing students with a more rounded general education.

their families and the wider local community. Many of our schools are not spiritually or educationally uplifting places to be. Although not impossible to overcome. Health practitioners of various guises and other social and psychological consultants and/or business activities are mooted as some of the partners to schools. As places of transformation. such as the feeling of being in a cosy English pub ± just good places to be ! Schools are also conceived as places of social levelling. To achieve equality with the provision of facilities.Designs for this purpose would create spaces which encouraged individual learning. This should happen through the formal and informal learning processes. this requirement creates a tension with architectural innovation. In practice this tends not to happen. Transforming schools into education centres which are accessible for greater periods of time during all phases of the week is a vehicle to enable this. if secondary schools are to be successful in the Knowledge Age. Other Considerations . and the physical environment is one of them. reflection and researching. contribute to this. governments tend to produce standard space schedules based on enrolment numbers. They may keep out the elements and be functional to an extent but they fail to produce that aspect of delight. How often does this happen? We still have many students leaving secondary schools with negative experiences that almost ensure that they will never return to places of learning. of course. However. opportunities and potentialities. The incorporation of these additional activities is designed to break-down the notion of the isolationist school and assist students to enter into society. Various factors can. Theoretically. but this tends to emphasise the lowest common denominator rather than to raise expectations. schools are increasingly required to adopt the provision of additional social services for students. Transformative Schools as places of transformation must focus on student development. scenario spaces for discussion and team work along with libraries which were conducive to private and group work. then students need to leave such places having developed a desire to continue the process and engage in life-long learning. government schools are intended to be places of equality of opportunity both educationally and in the provision of facilities. Academic and non-academic activities would include: y y y y y y Sport Performing Arts Individual Learning and Researching Scenario Constructions Discussion and Debate on Values and Beliefs. At the same time. schools become more efficient and effective. Self-fulfilment is also an outcome of informal learning which occurs between students.

These can be summarized as: Discipline and Supervision Schools are understood to be places of discipline. Whilst this has an economic impact. and lower end construction budgets.Size School design has always been subject to organisational efficiency and economies of scale. Currently. design and building efficiency is maintained by standard space-schedules. In the post-war period when large numbers of students had to be accommodated in schools. more recently. schools must be safe places. Hence. Discipline can also mean punishment for wrong-doing or breaking the rules. By contrast. Some of these conflict with the main purposes described above. This creates a tension with the projection of the school as an open and friendly community facility. In the broader sense this is the shaping of the student in a controlled and positive environment. µdiscipline¶ rated as the most important social factor for parents of children at government schools. there are also arguments for the benefit of larger course choices due to size. electronic surveillance. there are other sub-purposes or considerations which influence school designs to various degrees. The µDuty of Care¶ for students to the end of secondary schooling is an aspect of supervision. Opposite points of view maintain that there is a loss of community as the size of the school increases. Schools serve µsocial engineering¶ purposes as well. However. This provision also has ramifications for the risk of taking students off site for learning in µthe real world. 2003). which tend to emphasise minimum rather than optimum spaces. vocation. standard designs utilizing lower quality and low. Economies-of-scale are also achieved by increasing the size of schools. liberal pursuit and transformation.Most schools are designed with a combination of the purposes of socialisation. In a recent Australian Government Survey of parents¶ and community members¶ attitudes to schooling. this involves the identification of all staff and visitors who enter the school grounds. in non-government schools. Some of this may be overcome by the introduction of sub-schools or house groupings. Physical supervision is mostly achieved by visual oversight or.priced materials prevailed. But there are other factors operating here. . values were regarded as the most important social factor (Government. Parents expect their children to be safe in schools and are very ready to take legal action if they are not. Supervision is an integral part of discipline. Traditionally sight lines were important and had the unfortunate consequence of reinforcing the long and straight corridors of so many government schools.¶ What do these factors mean when considering more relevant learning experiences for students ? To what extent do these factors impinge on school design ? Organisational Efficiency ± Economies of Scale .

Schools can be very efficient but very ineffective. some may have additional tuition to bring them to the standard of the others in the group ± others may have additional tuition to take them beyond the group because they are capable of further development and learning. this is an unsatisfactory outcome. what are the implications of this for providing equality-of-opportunity and equality-of-provision? How should or do these concepts influence school design? Australian Scenarios The purposes and sub-purposes of schooling are being re-examined in a world which is experiencing great societal. likewise. Considerations of equality and equity have significant implications for the provision of school design. But if we acknowledge that all students are different and all approach learning in different ways. It means giving each student what is necessary to extend them to their full potential. this is rarely achieved in practice. Therefore.Efficiency and effectiveness are often opposite qualities. Equality and Equity Equality of opportunity and equality of provision means giving every student the same learning environment. just as it is of good architecture. It would not be desirable if this resulted in type-casting students as academic or not. they can also be effective but inefficient. Streaming. From all perspectives. Schools then take on the role of caretakers. Six scenarios have been constructed by the OECD in the: What Schools for the Future? (OECD. economic and educational change. In a positive sense. This has led some to look to the future by creating scenarios of what may be. Suter poses three scenarios. and µflies in the face¶ of arguments for access and equity. Looking to the future of schooling in society. where schools operate basically as they do at present. The first is business as usual. This is premised on the fact that . it would be hoped that the inherent intelligences. Striking the balance is the art of good education. Filtration and Care-taking Some view the purpose of secondary schools as being a filter for students progressing to further education or employment. talents and aptitudes of students would be identified and channelled in suitable directions. Because of the interplay of various elements. Providing µa level playing field¶ is an important element of schooling as a transformative purpose. 2001) Riel Miller has also considered some future directions with his paper: Where schools might fit in a future learning society (Miller. Students who are disaffected by this sorting process want to leave school despite being required to stay until they reach the end of compulsory schooling. 2003)? Two Australians have also recently contributed to this endeavour. Equity is a different concept.

we come up with µa community learning centre which is operational all hours. privately operated but government resourced. 2001)? Caldwell also offers three scenarios for future schooling. 2000). Efficiency. We are virtually led by Suter to adopt his third scenario as the most acceptable. This is not an attractive scenario and is not sustainable. Suter¶s scenarios are clearly linked to the building fabric of schools whereas Caldwell¶s are not. 2000). Add additional forms of learning for all ages. Keep the school facilities but expand and change their role.¶ The third scenario is that schools would decline as institutions and their place would be taken by community learning centres and home based learning (Caldwell. Third wave people would be looking ahead to new ways of operating. more individualisation in the schools¶ Toffler. Community support would be high. Would this then be the glue to hold the community together (Suter. that most of the teachers who will be around in ten years time are in the service now. and is well equipped with µstate-of-the-art¶ facilities and learning materials appropriate to the specialisations on offer. One of the relevant issues raised by Caldwell is Toffler¶s contribution to the understanding of the impact of societal transformation. Caldwell bundles this option in with the growth of home based learning and the description he gives it does not sound as appealing as that given by Suter. Starting Anew . Thus.people do not like change. Government would support the private school networks. Curriculum and learning technologies would be varied and µstate-of-the-art. This would be evidenced by the government vacating the ownership and delivery of education but would be actively supporting all schools with increased revenue. Caldwell constructs a matrix for the three scenarios based on Liberty. and that since the infrastructure is already in place. Fraternity. With an eye to the adherence of core values. as cited in (Caldwell. they would have freedom to design and create their own physical environments within the funding available to suit their purposes and be integrated with their communities. accessible to all people. This would free up a lot of real estate and promote individually tailored learning but where is the socialisation? The third scenario is represented by the community learning centre. The second scenario is that there would be a greater commitment to the public good. If we synthesise these two scenarios. His first is that the divide between Government and Private schools would increase and that Government schools would only act as safety net schools in the public domain. second wave people would« µoppose efforts to de-massify the schools¶ while the forces of the third wave µcall for a crack-up of the giant bureaucracies¶ and ¶fight for less standardisation. Second wave people (those moulded in the industrial era) would defend school systems of that time. the conservative forces will act to preserve the status quo. One can imagine further consolidation of the real estate of schools along with extensive upgrades to the remaining stock. But we can imagine that if all schools are in the private domain and they have strong community support. food at all times and additional community services such as health and sport. On this basis his second scenario is the preferred option. and Economic Growth. The second scenario is that students would be educated at home via cyber schooling. Equality.

However. Not only is this important to ensure that our physical facilities are not hindering the learning process we desire.1999) Conclusion The purposes and µsub-purposes¶ of schooling are many and have changed over the years since mass schooling was introduced. in like conferences and research all over the world. go into it?¶ (Drucker . space. y y y Architectus Injects Creativity in Pharmaceutical Building Portable Classrooms Will the form ever follow the function? The Permancy of School Facilities . I believe we are energised to seek more meaningful community because the importance of some of our old social geographies has faded. knowing what we now know. Only when the purposes of secondary education have been re-defined can we pay attention to the suitability of our existing school facilities. µIf we did not do this already. There is a strong link between the purposes of schooling and school designs. As we continue our early journey through the 21st century. would we. It has been tried before and failed. and where? Let¶s assume. but it is also essential to be assured that the enormous investment we have in our school facilities is giving us a sound return. I also believe that we understand considerably more about the process of effective learning and the importance of the environment to this. it is crucial to redefine the purpose of our secondary schools. there has been considerable home schooling provided by one or more parents or grandparents. What systems could we build or devise? Phoebe Palmieri considered the increasing flexibility of a number of educational components. And finally. for the purpose of this exercise. Peter Drucker talked of innovative organisations being able to µabandon yesterday¶. and what physical facilities would be required. and time.What if we were creating a universal education system now as we proceed from the Information society to the Knowledge society instead of when it actually happened during the move from an agricultural to the industrial society? What sort of schooling system would it be. Changing the system is hard. that there has been some private education for the elite in country boarding schools. Somehow we think schools should be a part of this. educators and architects are saying that we can do better with the design and provision of our educational buildings. I believe this energy to keep trying is driven by the belief that developments in information and communication technology have changed the rules of architecture ± our concepts of place. factories and mundane service industries. that there have been children in the workforce ± working in offices.

Those remaining are often struggling to operate as originally intended. Initially through the Public Works Office and latterly through the appointment of private architectural practices. These schools were built to last. Light Construction and Temporary In more recent times. railway stations. hospitals. the impact of technology and changes in patterns of living and community. There was no flexibility in their design and the learning environment was teacher centred. But where are all these built symbols of the community now? Many of them have been closed. . Some of the schools of this period have disappeared. These buildings did not exude permanency or community. There was no community consultation relating to school design. What is that story and where might that story be leading? Solid Brick and Permanent In the late 1800s and during the first half of the 1900s. police stations and law courts. These buildings tell a story of attitudes to education at the time they were designed. to accommodate the post-war baby boom and the fact that many students were staying on at school for longer periods. post offices. The answer was the LTC or ³light timber construction´ model. but many live on and are in current use. The then Public Works Office designed the standard from which many schools were subsequently built across the State from the 1950s to the 1970s. The architecture was ³industrial´ and catered for a centralised and standardised education system. This problem was so acute and overwhelming that temporary portable buildings had to be imported from England whilst a home based solution was devised. the Victorian Government could not afford the time or cost of continuing with solid brick school construction. churches. schools in Victoria were purpose built and constructed of solid brick.In Victoria we have examples of school buildings constructed over a period in excess of 100 years. Their malaise has been brought about by a combination of structural economic change. As such they were particularly important in country towns. This has had a dramatic impact in country areas. These schools were regarded as permanent built symbols of the community along with banks. Innovation and Economy During the last ten years or so the Victorian Government has encouraged creative architectural design for schools. Such construction of school buildings reflected the Government¶s proud promotion of the infant public education system. hotels. This programme has delivered innovation to the design of schools whilst adhering to economic construction and pre-determined space schedules. demolished or recycled for alternative uses. What did these buildings say? Once again these schools were of uniform design but their rapid construction indicated that the Government was catering for mass education of the student population.

The environment should communicate to the school population that the community cares and wants to give them the best environment for their stage of progress. what is the purpose of school? What is learning? Redefining community is another change. more and more learning is outside of school rather than confined to the four walls of the classroom.´ In a planning sense the siting of schools does not always take into account the concepts of community focus or ³heart. Technology is the most obvious change. Buildings for the Future There are currently major changes at hand which will effect the future design of schools However it will take some time for these to be extensively reflected in the built environment. Indeed. school should be a stimulating place to be. Consequently. In addition to the above trends. Quite simply.the use of computers at home. there is a growing appreciation that the physical environment has an impact upon the students¶ and teachers¶ attitudes to the place called school. changing pedagogy and changing curriculum have all had an influence on the learning spaces. Flexibility and Adaptability ± essential for the variety of current learning methodologies . schools are seen to be community facilities embodying the local culture. There is much anguish at the breakdown of many existing community structures and the seeming void of replacement models. if there is a heart. We are currently in the ³eye of the storm´ of the information revolution and this is effecting our lives in incredible ways. This sense of the school as a community facility is heightened where there is an adoption of life long learning within the community which makes use of the school facilities.´ Often schools are located away from other community facilities and separated by fences. The Importance of Buildings .are concepts widely adopted in current designs.An important feature is that many school designs are now unique. and to this extent. The use of computers in schools . So. The links between the two and the links world-wide are causing basic questions to be asked such as ³where does learning happen?´ Does it all have to happen at school and if not. it is more often a ³retail heart. where will new school (or learning centre) be located and what will it be designed to do? How will it integrate with the rest of the community facilities? The recognition of alternative means of learning has an impact on learning spaces. Changes in education are evident. the changing learning approaches. In addition. In the redefining of new community. The process also allows for the involvement of the school community in design and once again. They must uplift and they must give the students an appreciation of the beauty of design. the buildings as well as being spatially functional must be inspirational. No longer is learning ³teacher focussed´ but rather incorporates the offerings of interactive electronic technology and team and project based activities. some would say that more learning takes place in the community than in the school! The possibilities within the curriculum have increased and it is now recognised that more and more choice is required to construct a learning programme. In many sprawling Australian suburbs there is no community focus. Many of the icon buildings spoken of earlier have gone or are not constructed in the newer areas and.

This activity requires more flexible spaces. It is not just schools that are effected by this trend .even as cy-bodies although some do it this way. Some would argue that it is preferable to spend resources on computer technology rather than on buildings. To this extent. This may involve them spending periods out of the school environment ± indeed learning in ³real life´ situations. All schools would now support many computers ± most of which are in learning spaces where the students spend much time. English). Information and communication technology has had a profound impact on student learning. school buildings are still relevant. . in the community and in schools. The ³chalk and talk´ approach of previous years has now been modified to the extent that students now enter a variety of places and spaces to understand the issues they have at hand. School design facilitated this by creating corridors and boxes. Each of the boxes (classrooms) had rows of desks for the students and a desk at the front for the teacher. The teacher unions have also had a strong role here. Others would say that buildings such as schools are no longer relevant! But the question which always returns is the one which relates to the socialisation of humankind. Students were thought to learn by absorbing what the teacher said and then reading about it in prescribed text books. Over the years the number of students in classrooms has decreased due to the recognition that the educational quality is diminished when teachers do not have sufficient time to spend with individual students during their time in class. maths. science. Student numbers in classes were often 40 to 50 students. We are not designed to operate alone . Hence we often hear Governments boasting of falling student numbers in classrooms ± indeed now to the low 20s. All this equipment is usually networked with specialist staff looking after the infrastructure. we still have to learn lessons to perfect our relationships and in the formative years this is done at home.but all institutional buildings. if not more. These computers which take up space and generate heat require additional space considerations. Visual supervision around the school was also important. For most of us.It is evident that there is a changing emphasis on the importance of the design of buildings in community. a fulfilling existence is predicated upon our interaction with other human beings. Trends in School Design Since the advent of mass education (around the time of the Industrial Revolution). Although much of this may come naturally. There has also been much development in the understanding of how students learn. But other developments have been taking place as well. student learning in primary and secondary schools has been based on the model of teacher instruction. A great deal of learning is also done via projects and in student teams and often cross disciplinary (eg. The fact that our school buildings may not be constructed to last as long as their forebears is perhaps not as important. All of the above developments have implications for school design.

It is no longer thought that ³wall to wall´ asphalt or grass is appropriate. All schools have computers and other expensive technical equipment. There are large spaces for group assemblies. And. schools are closed for the most number of hours and usually are unattended during that time. is the most understandable. cultural issue here in that our communities do not place enough value on our schools and school buildings? Our schools are significant and very visible public assets. Schools are a sitting target for breaking and entering. (Courier Mail 28/11/05). perhaps. and particularly the Christmas break is a busy time for the wrongdoers. theft and arson. These are attractive to remove as high value. is it possible that they are inflicting retribution for past experiences? Unfortunately. internal damage and arson. smaller intimate spaces for informal learning and conversation. not all students leave our schools with happy memories of their educational experience. greater consideration for spaces which are attractive instead of institutional and greater attention to the work places for teachers. Many of them give a negative image of the value that the community places on education and as . Of all our public buildings. Multiply this amount for all the States and it is a significant sum. Theft. the design of that space is also paramount. disappointment and frustration. Who are they and what is their motivation? Assuming that most of these people have passed through schools as students at some stage. It is estimated that in Queensland this figure represents about $2. And here too we can design spaces to be attractive and welcoming. In general. The long holidays. there are a greater number of schools in our community than other public buildings therefore the incidence of damage to schools is disproportionate to the damage of those other buildings.5 million per year. Vandalism in Schools The wilful damage to our schools costs the State and school communities millions of dollars each year. But is there a broader. we can only speculate. But why do people damage schools and who are they likely to be? It would be interesting to ascertain from the Courts or Police records the reasons that culprits give for perpetrating such damage. Whilst adequate space is important for recreation and learning. In the absence of this information. The motivation for this action is possibly no more than the offenders need for quick money. our schools now are less crowded than in previous times. Schools are seen as suitable targets to express anger. of course. Of more concern are those who wilfully damage school property by graffiti.Learning spaces of various configurations have taken over from the standard classrooms. readily transportable and easily convertible into cash. Attention has also focused on the external environment. The external environment can provide rich learning opportunities ± particularly about the environment and nature.

History and µtruths¶ were passed down from one generation of holy people to the next. Is it time to re-think the concept of our isolated. When you go to the movies in the shopping mall. There was no separation of learning from life. This was the charter for the early schools. Students (males!) were orally instructed by the sages . although those who were educated comprised a small minority of the population. Students sat in rows of fixed desks in rooms lining long corridors.com.in buildings. Dr Andrew Bunting andrew. learning was divorced from the community. A longer-term change of community attitudes to our schools is necessary. institutional schools in an effort to improve their status and respect in the community. could we assume that vandalism to the buildings would be less? Increasing security (more lighting. Mass education came with the Industrial Revolution. The ICT of the Day Gradually. where mass teaching was teacher-centred with the mode of communication being the blackboard and rote learning. The schools were uninviting µinstitutions¶. more deterrent/warning signs and more fencing) is one way to approach the problem but it does not address the underlying cause. The growing cities required a workforce that was disciplined and compliant. This was the significant beginning of the separation of learning from home and community. cloisters and even under the shade of trees. This was the ICT of the day! To this extent. Architecture and Learning Buildings have been around in various shapes and forms since the days of the nomads and their tents. and if our schools were more integrated with community life. with the material being only handwritten manuscripts. The shopping mall is the place where you meet and the theatre is the space you¶ll be in for the show.places of learning.bunting@architectus. Why do we need them? We need them as a form of shelter and because they bring together the three concepts of time. If our school buildings were of a higher standard and more carefully designed. place and space. the Church took on this role of extending oral instruction and learning was associated with monasteries and privilege.au ICT and the Re-engineering of Learning: Implications for the Physical Environment In the times of Aristotle and Plato learning was woven into the life of the community. you meet at a certain time. The main game is the film but the building is the envelope where .

Schools. town halls. Buildings have performed this role for all sorts of human functions and activities. To date.it happens. students are able to structure their time of learning to suit themselves to a greater degree than they were able to previously. Schools Slower to Evolve Schools. The roles and functions of most of the above buildings have changed. as distinct from learning. and does. Learning can. churches. This. as public buildings. . it is interesting to consider all those public buildings of former times and how they have adapted or been superseded: y y y y y y y banks. post offices. This is not to say that learning does not happen in schools ± it does ± but it is not only confined to schools. They are then able to control when they undertake components of their learning. of course. it always has! However. Changed banking operations are a good example of this. has changed little over the last 100 years. ICT has the potential to free up this framework. along with the µwhere¶ and the µhow¶. bureaucratic systemic constraints and the provision of equality of opportunity and economic stringency. thankfully. ICT has accelerated this potential to free up time. In the context of this discussion. other students and wider information. With greater connectivity to teachers (facilitators). Hopefully. as traditionally established. computers in schools have largely been confined to computer laboratories and some schools have also wired each classroom for two or three computer outlets. applies to a larger extent as the students become older. because the student benefiting from ICT can tap into many more educational sites and databases of knowledge. Other schools have adopted a laptop programme and many students have access to computer technology at home. and. railway stations. as with teaching. are based around the concept of teaching taking place in small blocks of time and with one teacher in contact with 25 to 30 students. The operational times of schools are set to cover the µteaching day¶ and the timetable is usually based on a weekly cycle. The Influence of ICT on Time Schools provide an environment for teaching. But it is richer. have been slower to adapt to these changes for reasons including educational conservatism. happen outside of school. All of these developments mean that the imposition of time for learning is fading. The open-planned innovation of the 1970s was one exception. The planning of school layouts. This is a variation on the theme of correspondence distance education. court houses. A number of schools have taken advantage of this to shift the responsibility for learning more towards the students. as distinct from the fabric of the buildings. Rationalisation and economies of scale account for some of this trend but the impact of ICT has also been significant. schools. although this did not lead to a long-term change of direction.

hospitality. without any interruption to their educational programme . students and staff are able to access their school. music. A wider appreciation of the environment. With the decline in emphasis on teacher-centred environments and the greater emphasis on studentcentred learning. it will have an impact on the µlearning by doing¶ rooms. This technology has been around for a while and used widely for pilot instruction in flight simulators. Much of the learning that happens in these spaces is constructivist. Australia. the country and to interact with other students and staff in the outdoor environment. there is the introduction of new curriculum models and new pedagogies. So the logical extension of this is the concept of students joining an µeducational ship¶ in Melbourne. Learning can take place anywhere. which include maths. For reasons not to do with the introduction of ICT.whatever that may be. history. friends. The latter rooms cater for the traditional instructivist teaching of subjects. The Potential of Virtual Reality But perhaps the most significant impact of ICT ± yet to be implemented in any meaningful way outside of laboratories ± is virtual reality. Satellite communication systems ensure this. This trend has been enhanced by the introduction of ICT. some schools have taken students off-campus and into alternative environments to experience nature. stopping off numerous times and in various ports and countries. the print medium has been the main form of communication for the students in these general-purpose classrooms. the spaces where this occurs should be geared for student comfort and student amenity. which include science. In addition to ICT. all their other contacts from wherever they are. as well as in school. English. It is more difficult to see that the spaces. will significantly change in layout than it is to see the possibilities of change for the general-purpose classrooms. experiential learning and relationship building have all been a part of this shift away from traditional school for segments of the school year. The Influence of ICT on Space Can we say therefore that the traditional classroom spaces and layouts are still appropriate? In the secondary school situation. These impact on the design of learning spaces. Now. Team-based teaching and learning. learning spaces will need to change. Will it be necessary to diminish the forests by cutting up wood for materials technology when it could all be learnt and experienced in a virtual sense? The applications are many and the impact on facilities significant. The former rooms cater for subjects. Given that ICT will shift the balance of learning in this direction. geography. and indeed. and when it does.The Influence of ICT on Place Schools as isolated institutions of teaching and learning are being re-thought. technology. and taking a year to cruise the world. We all benefit and appreciate that! It will soon extend into general education though. interdisciplinary curricula and thematic learning are all concepts being practiced in various schools at present. drama and physical education. it is necessary to distinguish the µlearning by doing¶ rooms from the µlearning by listening and writing¶ rooms. business studies and languages. This technology allows students to learn by entering µunreal¶ environments to experience whatever is being studied. Aside from the oral transfer of knowledge by the teacher. but again facilitated by it. At the edge. . their family. The world information system follows them wherever they wish to go. which require special equipment.

and becoming a well-adjusted adult. Is there still a case that necessitates a structure to bring together the concepts of time. Student homerooms. That is why education should not take place entirely as a µcyborg¶ at home.others will be for top-up or extension purposes. if the function of education delivery changes and the importance of time. The pro-social aspects of growing up. the only personalised space for students is their locker space and this is often cramped in a congested corridor. E-learning will increase in importance. This could even lead to learning being a seamless activity within the community once again. The concept of school could disappear. Learning centres could evolve and be indistinguishable from shopping malls which. which do not require the provision of special equipment. It is also the process of maturing and socialisation of human kind. This will lead to a deinstitutionalisation of the school. are the new hearts of communities. Learning is more than the academic absorption and understanding of knowledge.will also be housed in more appropriate less cramped environments than they at present and they will have improved access at their desks (or workstations) for continuous electronic connectivity. will change but not disappear. tutors. Teachers/facilitators will come to the students for instruction where necessary for those subjects. These spaces will be allocated to the students for a whole year and so there will be µownership¶ of them and care of them. will evolve. place and space. place and space? Many educationalists would argue that there will always be the need for the passionate teacher ± the one who can enthuse their charges to explore their subject. unless there are extenuating circumstances. a tutorial and self.heavily equipped with technology for simulation and virtual reality. in many instances. subjects like sport and drama are especially difficult to 'do' on your own! . New Concept of a School More learning will be undertaken outside of the school and there will be more community use of the school. place and space are diminished. as will interactive multimedia learning tools. (µBetter than a thousand days of diligent study is one day with a great teacher¶: Japanese proverb) There is no argument with this and the appropriate spaces should be provided for this to occur. At present. as it presently the case at university level. facilitators . In this context.study environment. is as important as academic achievement. in the form of a building for learning. without external physical contact with others. One Scenario A well-quoted architectural convention is that µForm follows Function¶. then the form of the buildings which house whatever emerges should change. A Reshaped Environment Teachers.whatever they are called . The point is that this type of one-to-many contact will not take place for as much time as it does at present. Lockers will disappear. It may develop into more of a lecture. The convergence of time. Many schools have given their teachers laptop computers to encourage this level of communication. Some of this will be for entire learning content . In any case.classrooms could be akin to learning laboratories . where students will have their own workstation and computer facilities. The environment for students will improve.

Australia¶s achievement with educational outcomes was well above the OECD average.¶ So. education journalists. Drawing on interviews with Professor Brian Caldwell [immediate past Dean of the Faculty of Education at The University of Melbourne]. In contrast to the proceeding thoughts. 2005). Oct. there are a lot of schools to maintain. Architectus Melbourne School Building Decay In a critical article entitled µThe State of Decay. Thirdly. Dr. wrote of the declining standard of Victoria¶s Government school facilities.¶ she quoted the author of the survey. Academic standards and facilities were the second and third most commonly mentioned reasons why parents chose the private option. The consequence is that the problems persist and only escalate. Simply. schools account for the highest percentage of public building stock.¶ The reasons for this state of decay are well known. Kevin Donnelly¶s book. µI cannot name a developed country where the overall condition of school buildings is as bad as it is in Victoria. Firstly. Andrew Blair [President of the Victorian Secondary Schools Principals¶ Association]. Professor Caldwell drew on his international travels to comment. although they nominated academic standards and the provision of facilities as the most important factors. Secondly. (Professional Educator. µWhy our Schools are Failing. reported on a survey commissioned by the Australian Council of State School Organisations. 31/10/05). µParents send children to private schools to ensure their offspring are exposed to better social and job networks.Andrew Bunting.¶ (Melbourne Age 10/10/05). µNetworking Lures Parents. Caroline Milburn (Melbourne Age. And how much of a crisis is this? It is true that the influence of the physical environment is one of the important ingredients of a successful school experience. as saying that.¶ Keese made no mention of the failing standard of the physical facilities in government schools. Caroline Milburn and Shane Green. does the deteriorating standard of our government school buildings represent a crisis? Insofar as poor facilities negatively impact on students¶ and teachers¶ attitude to school and the . But how important? Responding to Dr. Brian Henderson [Victorian Branch Secretary of the Education Union] and myself [Victorian President of The Council for Education Facilities Planning International]. Director. the increase in private school enrolments was a µdrift¶ and not an µexodus. Teachers were well trained. Richard Denniss. In her article. parents whose children remained at government schools also.¶ Interestingly. construction quality fell during the 1950s to 1970s due to the requirement for a greater quantity of schools to house the post-war baby generation. successive governments have failed to allocated sufficient resources for school building maintenance and replacement.¶ Ian Keese wrote recently that there was no crisis in education. the article condemned the generally poor standard of Victorian Government school facilities.¶ and our government schools teach a µcross-section of values held in our society. µcited reasons similar to those mentioned by the private school parents.

as has been done in the UK. The challenge came in designing a building that could accommodate the separate uses without compromising the commercial aesthetics of the project. North Ryde. the need to provide both industrial and commercial space within the one facility.800 square metres of additional space for another tenant. Increasingly. windowless wall at the front entrance of the building. Andrew Bunting Director. parents in Victoria are enrolling their students in private schools where the standard of facilities is often much higher than that provided in government schools. and.process of learning. the only remedy for this situation is a significant capital injection by the government and/or utilizing private financing initiatives. Mr Ray Brown. The facility also has a further 4. Whilst government schools remain as separate institutions.800 square metres of production space. purpose built facility for Contract Pharmaceutical Services Australia Pty Ltd at Eden Park. Interestingly.´ Mr Brown said. The design had to capture the aesthetic vision of the client as well as logistically cater for the building¶s users ± no small feat in such a constrained timeframe.´ ³We achieved this by providing two distinctly different entrances to cater for the differing security needs of the tenants and by giving prominence to the commercial component over the industrial´ . Obviously parents are cognisant of this. The conventional wisdom still remains that private schools are better than public schools. µthe local school is breaking down as the glue that binds local communities. ³Essentially. we were creating a building which is an industrial facility with a commercial office on top. the need to create an aesthetic treatment for a specified seven metre high. Architectus Melbourne Architectus Injects Creativity in Pharmaceutical Building Architectus has designed a $17.¶ The notion of a school being central to the fabric of a community often no longer exists. unions now see this as a viable way forward in preventing the increasing decay of these institutions.5 million multi-use. The facility comprises 2. yes. Architectus director and lead project designer said the development posed three major architectural challenges: an extremely tight deadline of three weeks for initial concept through to development application. 600 square metres of office space and car parking accommodation for 270 cars over two basement levels. Dr. the answer must be. ³We had to put together the program concept in just three weeks. One consequence of this is that.

absolutely over the moon. The strength of emotion when schools farewell their portable buildings is strong. Due to funding limitations. but that is as far as they go. if not all. They usually keep out the weather. ³You can¶t imagine what this is going to mean to the school. Portable Classrooms The recent State Government budget has allocated funding to many schools for the construction of permanent facilities. are not. The news has been received by these schools with a combination of relief and joy. pre-cast concrete panels with various textures give the building¶s exterior a modern yet functional aesthetic and sun shading have also been used to give depth to the façade.´ He went on to say .´ . they provide space which may or may not be adequate. portables often stay around longer than intended and ³wear out their welcome. ³this is a good place to be. ³The building required a seven metre high exterior wall with no windows so we used textured treatments to add dimension and interest. This month. The building was completed in December 2004 and is fully leased with the Department of Employment and Workplace Relations taking the remaining 50 percent of office space. They are accepted as necessary to cope with medium term numbers in excess of the core enrolment or as temporary emergency measures but not as a significant long term component of the school infrastructure. Typical of this reaction is that of the principal of Rochester Secondary College who said that he was ³over the moon. the building won the 2005 Professional Excellence Award for Ecologically sustainable construction in the $10 million to $50 million category by the Australian Institute of Building and it has been awarded 4 stars under the Australian Building Greenhouse Rating system.Metal walls.´ [Shepparton News.´ Mr Brown said. roof sheeting. 7/5/2003] Much of this exuberation is related to the fact that these schools will be able to rid themselves of many. Portables are rarely regarded as part of the school.´ The best of these facilities are functional ± the worst. of their portable buildings. There are good reasons for this. They are not designed to exude an atmosphere of.

In many schools the siting of these facilities is a compromise. However. they should be maintained to a minimum standard for Occupation. it is clearly noticeable when a school enhances these buildings by creating (for example) useable spaces between them ± maybe courtyards with shade cloth and surrounding them with appropriate landscaping.au Will the form ever follow the function? . This can mean the loss of valuable recreation spaces and ³portable prominence´ whereby their visibility detracts from the main structure. School masterplans should take account of the siting of semi-permanent portable buildings so that they are located in the most desirable place with due thought to the relationship they have with the external environment. State schools should be aware that there is a triennial programme for masterplan/full planning/ and construction. It is important for schools to lock themselves into this programme.com. funding for this is allocated from PRIMS. Andrew Bunting Director Architectus andrew. In the State system.bunting@architectus.It is tempting for schools not to allocate time and resources to care for portable buildings.´ Mr. even though sometimes it is the ³squeaky wheel which gets the oil. One of the main considerations for their location is the necessary access for trucking and/or craning them in and out. Nevertheless. Health and Safety reasons.

Secondly. change may not be as radical and dynamic as conference presenters would have us believe. mandated assessments and school accountabilities act as dampeners for change. A number of these schools were built of light weight materials and constructed in great quantity to cater for the baby boomer years of the Post Second World War period. the function within buildings is moving but the form is not. the reality is that most of them have been ³on the ground´ for a number of years and were designed along industrial ³process´ lines to suit the didactic paradigm of education at the time. What Sullivan went on to say (which is rarely mentioned) was. then so should the form.´ By implication. . the curriculum. Thirdly. With our schools. And then. therefore. systemic change is hard.´ This is the concept of form determining function. ³where the function does not change ± neither should the form. but in the current age when change is all around us and the rate of change is increasing. particularly in the senior years of Secondary School where ³enter scores´ for tertiary institutions are all important.³Form follows Function´ is a well known architectural maxim espoused by Louis Sullivan in 1896. may be somewhat different. For previous periods in history this was not so much of an issue. Some of them have never been out of the classroom and so don¶t know how to operate any differently than the way they were first taught and the way they were taught to teach. Nevertheless. It is difficult to scale up good ideas to operate throughout the entire system. though. This brings us to the dilemma of Winston Churchill who. Many of these schools will last a lot longer than the present ± some for the next 20 to 30 years. (complaining about the Houses of Parliament in London) said ³we first design our buildings and in time then they design us. it is safe to say that where the function does change. We build them to last. teachers are generally considered to be a conservative group of professionals. hospitals as places of healing and schools as places of learning. in 1924. generally for 40 or 50 and more years. education has changed ± at least educational leaders tell us this at conferences. hotels are designed to function as places for drinking and accommodation. In fulfillment of this. The general reality. However. Across the system. churches as places of worship. The problem with most buildings is that they are long term assets. there is the impact of existing buildings which don¶t support the new pedagogies. Firstly. There are reasons for slow rates of change in education. there are pockets of innovation happening in individual schools which give cause for hope.

But if we could redesign our schools to be places which support the new ways of learning in the ³knowledge age´ ± perhaps taking on board some of the ideas from existing innovative institutions. Generally. Included here are the issues of physical comfort. it is considered important to have this form of security. At their levels within the primary sector. Steiner. they enter a new type of learning regime. If learning spaces are based on year levels (and they don¶t have to be ± recall the one roomed school house for all grades). And it all needs to be at the appropriate scale for the junior students. The external environment is a part of this. the curriculum does not prescribe that the primary learning content is broken into distinct subject specialties as it is later on. students don¶t move from one room to another during the day. Early learning philosophy supports the importance of the environment for younger students ± Montessori. Whilst it is necessary to have adequate play space which may include some hard surfaces. There may be some definition of space but three sides may be sufficient with the fourth side being open to a common resource area. When students progress to the traditional Secondary School. water ponds. eg. Creative gardens. Learning spaces don¶t have to be enclosed as are traditional classrooms. bird hives and so on all give rise to rich learning possibilities. it is undesirable to have ³wall to wall´ asphalt in any school. and Reggio Emilia being some of the theories. for the most part. then adjacent break out nooks and generous resource areas are important to support this more independent and team based approach. The students are constantly moving around the school from one room to another which makes for lost time and points of congestion. . The curriculum is divided into subject disciplines. Much can be done with the external environment to create learning experiences. what sort of things would we consider ? In Primary Schools. their room is their place and space for the entire year and this is often evident by the way they personalize their space with colour and various adornment. learning time is divided into periods of 40 minutes (for the most part) and the students are faced with many teachers in lieu of the one they had in primary school. but also of spaces that elicit curiosity and wonder. Furthermore. temperature and light. Primary schools are excellent places for interdisciplinary learning perhaps using teams of students for projects and teams of teachers to assist. This area may include the library together with supporting information and communication technology and media facilities.

In general their purpose has shifted from being vocationally oriented institutions to places where the students not only learn various subject contents but also learn how to process information and create new knowledge. The recognition of the value of constructivist learning is also taking hold. The didactic method may be appropriate for some but totally non-productive for others. In the real world. Good design encompasses appropriate planning of the internal and external spaces as well as the external elevation or façade of the buildings. The quantity and quality of information available to students via the computer network has grown exponentially. there have been many pressures for change. Both aspects are equally important. However. Humans need social and physical contact. . much work and leisure happens with other humans in groups and teams.In comparison to Primary Schools. Students should leave Secondary Schools with critical minds and problem solving abilities ± skills which can then be applied to many and various academic disciplines and life situations. There seems to be an assumption that the physical environment is not important to secondary school students. It is possible for the virtual school to replace the physical school and this has happened for a while with our ³Outback School of the Air. The first would be the recognition that students have preferred methods to learn. They learn ³how to learn´ and how to defend and demonstrate their learning with their peers. This has given education a new dimension. There has also been a re-questioning of the purpose of our Secondary Schools.´ Although virtual schooling is possible it is not a first option for the main component of the educational experience. Communication technology has given students the ability to converse with anyone. The quantum of communication happenings from SMS text messages to synchronous voice and video communication has burgeoned. It has also given students the freedom to work off campus to various levels and to take courses in the virtual sense entirely divorced from their physical school environment. This has come out of the work by Howard Gardner and others on multiple intelligences. many Secondary Schools are often bland and basic building types. The educational experience should mirror this. Within the Secondary School learning environment. anywhere in the world. The skills of accessing and sifting this information as part of the learning process. we know that this group are still impressionable and can be led to appreciate good design ± an attribute which will stay with them for the rest of their lives.

It works ideally as an informal learning place due to its centrality but particularly with the library being on one side and the cafeteria being on the other. pockets of innovation have occurred and much has been spoken about new ways of doing things. heating and light. This gives them continuity. Students should have a home base and have their own workstation. Furthermore there is a trend to have students engage in ³authentic´ or real life learning in the community rather within the confines of the school. These are places where the students can relax or work informally with each other or with teachers. Mix this with the resource of unlimited electronic information and the ability to meet and work in the virtual sense rather than always in the physical form and we have a new educational paradigm. At the same time it is recognized that some movement will be required to attend specialist spaces such as music and science. Such a space could look like the following diagram. To a significant extent this has had a negative influence on learning innovation in the senior years of secondary schooling. High on the agenda is team based learning where students learn in groups instead of individually. It is popular with both staff and . This is particularly relevant to the more vocationally oriented courses. Partnerships with tertiary institutions and industry are of importance in this respect. Here a quadrangle in the senior school was created by raising the floor or a wasted space in the school grounds to a level surface with colour. Emphasis should be given to the creation of informal learning areas. the method of assessment has largely remained with the examination system. This is already happening in some places ± The School for Environmental Studies (The Zoo School) in Minnesota being one example. Added to this could be that the content studied spans various disciplines and age groups. sound. What does this all mean for the design issues for secondary schools ? Firstly. Schools should also be designed for the students instead of for the ease of the staff to supervise the students. Nevertheless. A successful learning environment along these lines was designed by Architectus at Carey Baptist Grammar School in Melbourne.Whilst the curriculum has broadened considerably in the Secondary Schools. permanency and assists them with teamwork. it means that the industrial design of long corridors and small classrooms should no longer be the dominant model. They may well have one or two members of staff who are group tutors and/or mentors who occupy the space with them.

we can build for the present but we should build for the future. For adaptability. We don¶t want to build for the past. All this can be done without compromising the structure of the buildings. it is still possible to convert existing buildings for some of the above features. operable walls and moveable furniture. however trends are evident. It is evident that educators are talking more about the effect of the built and natural environments on the learning process. Whilst it is easier to design such facilities in a new environment. spaces should be provided for informal gatherings with appropriate landscaping. It is difficult or even impossible to undertake these activities on an individual basis. The form of our school buildings should not be allowed to frustrate the progress of the education function. for example. schools should be designed so that every five to ten years the internal fitout can be reconfigured. The external environment is also important. the design should allow for the configured spaces to be changed on a daily basis using. Too often they do without the staff or students realizing the effect. And there the analogy ends !!! .students during the day and can be used by the school or external groups for dinners in the evening. Given the trend for students to spend a greater proportion of their time working off campus either in work place settings or at home. Such facilities could also be available for use by community groups. Predicting the future of education cannot be done with absolute certainty. during their life there will be additional recurrent costs to refit them for current functions in much the same way as the Navy refits its ships for current warfare. it is considered that schools should place a greater emphasis on the collective activities for students such as sport and performing arts. Education buildings are significant community assets. Again. For flexibility. However. They are built at a point in time with a particular capital cost. How is it best to do this ? Recent solutions to this include building for adaptability and flexibility.

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