80% of school buildings should no longer be in use

The Royal Institute of British Architects is claiming that pupils are being failed by schools which aren’t fit for purpose and that most contain asbestos.

Four-fifths of Britain’s schools are being used beyond their life cycle and should be replaced with buildings which provide a healthier learning environment, the Telegraph reports.

According to the report from the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA), three quarters of existing schools contain asbestos. “Years of underinvestment, coupled with recent changes to school building, rebuilding and refurbishment programmes have left us with crumbling schools which fail those trying to learn and teach in them,” the report states.

The latest designs for new schools are not big enough to prevent overcrowding and cater for the 250,000 extra places needed in September. The standardised designs are 15% smaller than those built under the previous ‘Building Schools for the Future’ programme, RIBA claims, and it wants the government to increase the cost of new schools by a fifth: “Standardised designs have smaller corridors, smaller assembly halls and canteens. Overcrowding in narrow corridors exacerbates bullying and harassment, fewer social areas outside classrooms limit students’ abilities to socialise. The new schools being built aren’t fit for purpose and will certainly not stand the test of time.”

Do you work in an old school that needs to be knocked down and rebuilt? If you’re teaching in a new school, do you share RIBA’s comments about its design? Share your views with the Eteach community!

One thought on “80% of school buildings should no longer be in use

  1. So the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) reports that three quarters of existing schools contain asbestos. The UK government banned blue and brown asbestos in 1985 and it banned white asbestos in 1999. Sweden had effectively banned all asbestos in 1976 – twenty three years earlier. If British Architects had been more astute and discerning, they would not have fallen for the misinformation put out by the asbestos industry and a whole generation of British schools would never have had this hideous product installed in the first place.

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