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Compact Laboratory Solutions for Growing Pupil Numbers

With secondary school pupil numbers set to rise rapidly over the next three years, schools are now facing a growing challenge to provide quality facilities for students within a limited building footprint – and within tight budgets.

Most schools are already pushed for space, so the question is – how do we create more teaching areas without embarking on costly and time-consuming building projects?

The Growing Importance of Science

The UK is home to one of the world’s largest and fastest growing life science industries, and the UK government fully recognises its importance to our ongoing economy, with stated goals to become a global leader in this field. It is therefore critical that our schools provide modern and adequate science teaching facilities, to inspire our students to seriously pursue careers in the science field.

Traditionally, secondary school science labs would have an approximate footprint of 85-90 square meters, which is roughly 30% bigger than a standard classroom footprint. Many schools are now looking to create more laboratories to accommodate growing pupil numbers, and the challenge is how to facilitate these within an already limited spaces.

A Compact Laboratory Solution

One way to answer the challenge is to combine practical science and theory areas within the lab, a concept that we call FUSION2. This system makes it possible to install a fully functioning lab within the space of a standard classroom, and has a proven track-record of success within high schools.

Peninsular style pupil desks with power sockets and gas taps fitted on sloping service panels are used to create multi use workstations. Clearing taps and sockets off the desktop also removes potential distractions, and encourages pupils to remain focused on the task in hand. Moving services away from the perimeter also improves visibility for the teacher, and creates a safer learning environment for all.

The room is laid out more like a traditional classroom, with rows of peninsular desks facing the front of the room. This also encourages focus and engagement, when compared with layouts where pupils face away from the teacher’s space, or sit around group tables.

Size Matters

Installing a FUSION2 Laboratory environment can save you up to 30% in overall room footprint space. It also provides a multi-use room with all the services you need to teach science, with a traditional classroom layout where you can potentially teach other subjects.

In some cases, schools have converted existing classrooms into labs instead of embarking on costly building projects to create new laboratories.

Date:

25 June 2020

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