The first modular building was designed and manufactured by London carpenter Henry Manning, who created this easily portable home for his son who was emigrating to Australia in 1837. Since then, modular construction has flourished not only in Australia but all over the world. What was once weak and simple construction is now dubbed the future of school premises.
“Modular Schools Are the Future”, “Modular Construction Reshaping Educational Premises”, “Modular Builders Expanding Schools the Smart Way ” are the types of headings you often see flying around in the school construction niche. But how can something that started nearly two centuries ago be the next big thing in school construction?
Well, thanks to constant technological advancement, modular schools are no longer the frail, often unsightly buildings from the past. Nowadays, modular schools look equally good if not even better than traditional brick and mortar schools. Quick to build and affordable, are some of the benefits you’ll often hear about in a typical school admin convo, but once you start digging a little deeper, you’ll unearth even more amazing things that modular construction has to offer. So let’s start digging, shall we?
What Exactly Are Modular Schools?
Modular schools are prefabricated buildings designed and built in a factory, far away from your school grounds. They’re called modular because they typically consist of several independent modules that can be easily rearranged and relocated. Does this mean that modular schools aren’t permanent? No, modular school building companies nowadays create future-proofed permanent modular education facilities with the added benefit of portability.
This means that a module can be moved to another location when such need arises, but in no way will it look temporary like those dreaded school cabins from the last century. Don’t believe me? Just have a look at the modular school building of Jordan Springs Primary School or Keilor Primary School. See, they don’t look temporary at all, do they? Now that we have that out of the way, let’s see what else modular school construction puts on the table.
Enjoy Greater Flexibility
One of the most underrated benefits of modular schools is the flexibility they offer. Running a school is everything but rigid and you need to be able to meet the ever-changing needs of your facility if you strive for success. As mentioned above, modular schools are easy to move and rearrange, which gives you the ability to adapt. This means that you can act quickly if one department closes and another opens, repurpose the classrooms for a different use or even rent the classrooms that you don’t need for passive income.
Plan for the Future with Confidence
Every successful school, no matter how big or small, will need to expand at some point. However, traditional school expansion can be a lengthy process that won’t only disrupt your students and staff, but it’ll also suck your school’s budget dry. That’s when modular school builders march in and save the day.
Let’s say you need to cater to an influx of student this year. By the time your new site-built department is completed, the school year will probably come to an end. Yes, you’ve heard that modular construction has quicker build time, but exactly how quicker? While brick and mortar schools typically need 6-12 months to be completed, the modular counterpart needs as little as 9-12 weeks, depending on the complexity of the project.
Now that’s a huge difference, but there’s more. Apart from the obvious fact that it takes about 40% less time to erect prefab classrooms, another great thing about modular school construction is that it offers a fixed guaranteed time frame so you can plan everything to the smallest detail, installation included.
How is this beneficial to your school you ask? Well, since the construction work is done off-site, you can plan for the installation part to be done over the summer or holiday break and continue with your educational process with zero disruptions.
Then, you’ve probably heard that modular classrooms are more affordable. But what you may or may not know is that modular school construction offers fixed costs with no surprises whatsoever throughout the entire process. This means that once you sign a contract, the whole construction phase will fit into your budget like a glove. Some builders even offer the opportunity to work backwards from your budget so you can make the most of your financial constraints.
Practice What You Preach
You put so much work and effort into educating your students about the effects of global warming, climate change, pollution, CO2 emissions and the importance of sustainability, so it’s about time for your school to join the good fight and lead by example. One of the not so famous benefits of modular classrooms is that they’re environmentally sustainable.
These eco classrooms are made of the latest eco-friendly materials that can be reused and recycled at any stage. What’s more, some modular school construction companies go that extra mile to ensure that no formaldehyde products, VOCs, toxic adhesives and sealants are used in the construction process.
Furthermore, prefab classrooms utilize natural daylight and have high thermal insulation which can significantly lower your school’s energy consumption thus reduce your school’s carbon footprint. It’s also worth mentioning that because eco classrooms are built off-site, modular school construction companies take an active role in reducing site waste, land imprint, noise, rubbish and debris.
Create Pleasant Learning Environments
If you took a glance at the educational facilities mentioned above, you’ve surely noticed how trendy and aesthetically pleasing they look. Although many old-school teachers may argue that you can teach anywhere as long as you have a blackboard and chalk stick, things aren’t so simple in these modern times we’re living in.
According to numerous studies and research in recent years, a purposeful design is one of the essentials for every modern classroom because it can greatly affect the child’s ability to learn. Modern prefab classrooms are designed with this particular thing in mind to cradle and inspire the minds of tomorrow.
For instance, the Keilor Primary School in Victoria features recessive curved walls and a bold material palette to create visual interest and encourage creativity. Then, the Morwell TAFE early educational facility features operable walls that allow for flexible classroom layout and dynamic teaching possibilities. It’s features like these that make students and educators feel comfortable and effective in the educational process.
Let’s not forget to mention that both of these school facilities feature high-performance acoustic paneling to mitigate noise and strategically placed double glazed windows to ensure a pleasant temperature throughout the year and plenty of natural daylight. It’s safe to say that the modular school builders in these particular cases did an excellent job in creating pleasant learning environments with high regard for the needs of students of today.
With that being said, you now know why everyone is talking about modular construction as the future of educational facilities.