Does Your School Need a Canopy?
Are you looking for a way to enhance your school building? Then an education canopy could be the way to go. They provide numerous study benefits, whether choosing a canopy for nurseries, schools, colleges or universities. Education canopies can be incorporated into various areas of the building to assist a range of activities, such as eating, learning, playing or travelling. Read more to find out how an education canopy could benefit your school.
Department for Education estimates there will be 3,287,000 secondary school students in England by 2023; a 20% increase since 2015. The primary school population has also been rising since 2009. It is already more difficult than ever for students to get a place, with a growing population jarring with funding cuts to the education sector, so classroom space is at a premium.
According to The Key, a provider of information and online solutions to the education and wider public sector, 25% of schools believe a lack of additional space is hampering their ability to cope with increased demand from students.
The reality of the situation is that school grounds will usually suffer from cuts before the school buildings themselves. However, one of the positive aspects is that while school buildings must be completed by the time they are opening, the school grounds themselves can be developed throughout the school’s lifetime. This can be useful in allowing their design to work in harmony with the school curriculum. If you’re thinking about enhancing the space at your school, a canopy could negate the need for a costlier building extension by providing an additional classroom space or dining area.
Outdoor health benefits
The benefits of being outdoors for school children have been widely acknowledged. The National Childbirth Trust says that children who play outside will have a greater sense of environmental awareness as they get older, while there has been much evidence that being outdoors has positive effects on conditions such as ADHD and depression. It can also help young children to develop basic motor functions and improve their confidence in trying out physical actions on natural surfaces. Being out in the fresh air can therefore help in nurturing children’s mental and physical health, as well as promoting concentration and helping improve work quality.
It is often a novelty for children to get outdoors and feel freer than they do within the confines of the classroom; an education canopy is the ideal addition to help them enjoy their learning experience and break times. Government research has even ascertained that children find their teachers ‘friendlier’ outdoors. In addition to this, providing outdoor shelter for lunchtimes has been shown to encourage secondary school students to stay on site in between lessons.
Ofsted has issued various recommendations on the value of outdoor learning, though the perception of this view was always up for debate in the past. Some took the reference to the value of learning outside the classroom to include off-site locations such as libraries and museums. However, feedback provided to schools from Ofsted has shown some facilities being criticised for not providing an adequate outdoor space for pupils within the grounds.
With the added importance placed on taking children outside as part of their education experience, it becomes more crucial than ever for schools to develop their grounds for this purpose. A school canopy allows children to experience the wonders of the outdoors which cannot be recreated in the classroom, even during inclement weather.
Protection from the elements
A canopy can enhance the school environment in many ways, whether for dining, learning, moving from building to building or entering the building. Additionally, education canopies can provide covered areas for parents to wait when they pick up their children, or a handy spectator area for sports days.
So to summarise, ask yourself these questions to help you decide whether to progress further:
- Could your school building benefit from more space?
- Do you think outdoor learning could improve the school experience?
- Is there a lack of outdoor areas for children to enjoy during break times?
If you’d now like to know how to build a business case for your canopy purchase, click here to find out everything you’ll need to consider. Alternatively, if you wish to book a no-obligation survey of your building, you can request one here.