The Elmgreen School, Tulse Hill

London Borough of Lambeth

The Elmgreen School when built, was the first Parent Promoted school in the UK, accommodating 1,100 students from 11 - 18. The design and realisation of the school was a true collaboration between the local authority, teachers, parents, contractor and architect. It responds to new ways of learning, a greater and extended use of technology, greater levels of student autonomy and personalisation of the curriculum by providing open and reconfigurable spaces where passive supervision is an important feature. The building is designed as a single envelope, with facilities placed around a central 'market square'. This space acts as a focus for learning and creates connections between the different learning areas. It has been designed to allow flexibility in its use for both curriculum activity, to socialise in and for community use, and has been transformed into a year-round external space through its glass roof. The planning team worked closely with the design team and planning officers to ensure that resolution to grant permission was achieved in 11 weeks from submission of the application. “The new building has had a massive impact upon the day-to-day operation of the school and the increase in key performance indicators. Attendance at school is up by 2%. We now surpass the Local Authority attendance target by 1.5%. The learning and working spaces have given staff the freedom to be more innovative and feel better about their working environment.” John Wilkinson, Acting Headteacher

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