6 Common Mistakes People Make While Redesigning School

6 Common Mistakes People Make While Redesigning School

“Design creates culture. Culture shapes values. Values determine the future” – Robert L Peters.

The design of your school plays a huge role in the kind of culture that you want to instill in your students, but also the image you represent to anyone that visits your school. This school culture goes into shaping the attitudes, beliefs, perceptions, and values that your students take forward with them not only into every lesson, conversation they have, but also molds them into the kind of person they will be for the rest of their lives. In essence, when you’re thinking about redesigning your school, it’s keeping in mind the fact that every design change you make will have a significant impact on your student’s holistic development.

Redesigning a school is a process that has three main factors contributing towards making your dream school a reality; 1) Planning, 2) Time, 3) Cost. These three weigh in on whether your redesign plans actually happen or fall through. With the hopes of having a school that fills students with a passion to be creative and the desire to learn, people still miss the mark. We regularly see educators with good intentions trying to make changes to their school’s design, but it not working out.

Common mistakes we’ve seen people make over the years
1. Traditional design curbs learning

The needs of students and the manner in which they learn have evolved. But for instance, if one were to stick to the same design arrangements like the cells & bells method* which in previous years was sought after, it would limit the opportunity for students to learn as compared to more contemporary options like having a learning street* would. When looking to redesign your school, be open-minded and explore the options that can enhance your students’ holistic learning experience.

2. Inspiration vs Replication

People often look at images on Pinterest or Google and waste both their money and time in attempts to DIY or replicate them, expecting it to end up exactly the same. The context behind an image and taking inspiration from it is something that only professionals in the field comprehend well, because they know why certain things will work in your space and why others won’t. So, instead of giving yourself the hassle of trying to fix the mess you are bound to create, leave it up to those with experience from the very start.

3. Missing the Big Picture

Before redesigning your school, there should be a vision in mind of why you are seeking to make changes, planning for where you see your school at least for the next 10-15 years is essential. This is often where people only think of what is needed in the short term instead of taking into account the future requirements.

For instance, if a school expects an increase of 100 students for the next academic year, they need to build 3 new classrooms to accommodate them. If this is repeated the next year another 3 would be required, going through this process each year can result in mismanagement of time, money, and resources. Instead, estimating the increase in student capacity for at least the next 5 years and planning for infrastructural changes by creating a master plan would prevent the mismanagement of your resources from taking place, saving you on both time and expense.

4. Inappropriate use of the space

Space is a luxury that most schools don’t have, so it needs to be properly utilized. With awareness and understanding of what the spaces are being redesigned for, making changes that matter and will create an actual difference is possible.

In metro cities, for preschools rented residential properties are used and as a result, their play areas are extremely small, one-dimensional, come across as dry, and lifeless. Often tanks are also built to facilitate water play as part of the school curriculum, something which is only used 2-3 times yearly, requires maintenance, and wastes a lot of space. In one of our renovation projects at Podar Jumbo Kids (Whitefield), we created a splash fountain in the play area as the water play which is much more fun and interesting for kids and has very low maintenance. When not in use it also doubles as a free play area that is stimulating, fluid, safe, and inviting for kids.

Podar Jumbo Kids, Whitefield
(Designed by The School Designs Studio)

5. Choosing cosmetics over the necessities

No one can deny that the better something looks, the more likely one is to pay attention to it. With school redesign, however, it’s equally important that while striving to make the surroundings look good, it does not take away focus from the areas that really deserve it.

Most of the time, people do not prioritize the proper planning of washrooms in school. This results in not enough washrooms for the school’s student capacity or no proper ventilation and fixtures. Without proper planning, maintenance and repairs that could otherwise be avoided are incurred. Ensuring that when redesigning your school these necessary facilities that students use daily are thought of in advance and made a top priority, is essential. This means resources are put to use where they are actually required over just the exterior and cosmetic changes.

Podar Jumbo Kids, Sarjapur (Designed by The School Designs Studio)

6. Underestimating the impact of the learning environment

A child learns so much from their environment, when it comes to schools it’s where they spend most of their day, so understanding and not underestimating this fact while redesigning your school is vital. With research that substantiates that a student’s learning abilities can be increased based on their environment, special care, and effort needs to go into redesigning a school instead of ignoring it.

Bringing professionals on board that specialize in school design along with years of experience and understanding will transform your school into an interactive and stimulating learning environment. This is something that while might come at a cost, in the long run, is invaluable because if you tried doing the same thing on your own, it would not only be more expensive but could never yield the same results.


Redesigning and contemplating the upcoming changes that your school and your students are going to see can be very exciting, but keep in mind that these factors that you may think to overlook, can make a big difference when looking at the end result. Your school is where your students are going to spend at least five to ten years of their lives going almost everyday, this space is where most of their learning and holistic development will take place.

So with proper planning and awareness, you should be in a position where your school design is not outdated, does not fall short of your expectations, factor’s in the future, utilizes space to its maximum, doesn’t focus only on the cosmetic looks, and doesn’t fail to have an overall impact on your students learning. If you are spending time and money on redesigning your school, it should ultimately cater to bringing both that vision in your mind to life and the school culture you want every student to carry forward with them through their lives. This is particularly where having experts to guide you to make the right decisions can make all the difference in seeing the results you want. So, if you’re thinking about redesigning your school, consider The School Designs Studio, we are professionals that have the experience and knowledge to make the changes you want, and will turn your dream school into a reality!

Get in touch with us now at enquiry@theschooldesignsstudio.com or call at (+91)8310094975.

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