Architect Sarah Wigglesworth has launched a broadside against Michael Gove and the government’s plans for standardisation of school design.
In a blistering piece on the Guardian’s Comment is Free website, she argues that the policy of school standardisation exposes localism as a “meaningless” term.
And she accuses the government of being hasty in its judgment of the architect’s role.
Wigglesworth, who under the previous government researched and developed ideas for future school design, writes: “The ConDems don’t mind bankers getting richer, but demonise architects as freeloaders.”
Wigglesworth says City firms’ offices are designed to attract talent to the Square Mile; that patients recover faster in well-designed hospitals; that tourists flock to attractive places.
“If these are facts, then how can schools defy this obvious logic?” she asks.
The article goes on to say: “In the architect-free ConDem future, we can use catalogue designs to build cheap, under-sized state schools occupied on a rotational basis. People will care less about quality and more about profit margins and ‘shareholder value’.
“But the factory schools of the future will have little regard for the appropriateness of the design to the school’s educational aspirations – why should they? We are told that this is the teachers’ responsibility. But the question remains: why would a teacher want to teach in such an environment? What message does it send to our kids? Both would soon know their place: they don’t matter. How can this possibly aid learning?
“In pursuing the current policy we could easily see another generation of disastrous school buildings destined to be rebuilt in 20 years’ time. Professional expertise helps, and Gove should be seeking good design in any form, especially now that people are free to set up their own schools with no prior knowledge of how to do it.”
Read the full piece here: http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2011/feb/22/schools-michael-gove-architecture?INTCMP=SRCH
12 November 2012 | Updated: 12 November 2012 11:28 am
8 April 2011
28 February 2011
24 February 2011
23 February 2011
7 February 2011
3 February 2011
28 January 2011