A detailed accommodation plan for the new Deptford Green school has laid down that classrooms should be nearly 30% bigger than the government recommended size (BB98) – a move welcomed by parents forum reps.
The DG plans demand classrooms that are 72 m sq compared with 56m sq under the BB98 rules. To put that in context, the biggest classroom in the current school is H1 and that is 69m sq.
The classrooms will mean students are not squashed together and may be taught in traditional rows, in a large horseshoe or be broken in small groups.
Overall the plans put the total school size at 11,245m sq. This is larger than the 10,560m sq under government rules (BB98). It will also mean the new school is only 6% smaller than the current school (though there will still be 130 extra pupils).
There will also be small, medium and large rooms where groups can work together. Some of these will also double as quiet space for children during breaks.
The school will keep the current learning areas of Endeavour, Discovery, Endurance and Challenger and have all the admin in an area called Enterprise. This will maintain the year 7&8 separation from the rest of the school – something many parents feel is important.
Each learning area will have its own small library of subject-related books, but the rooms will not just be used as libraries.
There will be no permanent staff offices, with rooms bookable whenever staff need meeting rooms or quiet space.
The school hall – actually a huge conference centre – will be 450m sq, large enough to hold virtually all the school examinations without having to use of the sports hall and prevent PE lessons taking place there. It will also be available for large shows and lectures and be used for conferences and restorative justice.
The dinning area will have a central kitchen with hatches serving:
- hot main meals,
- fast food such as jacket potatoes,
A big issue remains the use of Fordham Park and how much of the park the school will be able to use as sports facilities. On a site less than half the size of the current school and with more pupils fitting into a smaller school using Fordham park will be essential.
Changing the school day consultation
To enable the lower school to decant – and for the new school to function on a single site – Deptford Green will need to change the start time of different parts of the school so it can stagger breaks and lunchtimes. It must consult with parents first so this will begin soon after half-term