Factors to consider when choosing the best location for a school. Remember, in addition to the following, the physical location should be accessible to both near and distant students in the community.
How will students and/or their parents access the school? Traffic patterns need to be thoroughly assessed to facilitate both access to the school in the morning, and exit from the school after classes. Local traffic should be disrupted as little as possible to create a calm drop-off and pick-up period. Consider building on a frontage road to avoid the facility being on a main road.
Stakeholders should work with local public transportation authorities as needed to add a bus stop, or to supply students with public transportation subsidies.
How will students move from building to building? Many students may wish to utilize skateboards, scooters, roller skates and bicycles. Paved paths are essential for these and possibly separate walking paths.
Adequate parking spaces must be available for students, educators, visitors and contract personnel.
For boarding educational facilities or where students live on campus, reasonable proximity to essential amenities like groceries, restaurants, laundry, outdoor natural recreation areas and entertainment complexes is necessary. The immediate surroundings should be pleasing. When possible, a natural environment with trees, shrubberies, etc. is preferable.
Consider the climate where the educational facility is located. In hot climates, high ceilings, ceiling fans and rooms that facilitate airflow are essential. Open corridors between classrooms are ideal, where students can get fresh air and enjoy fresh breezes in between classes.
In colder climates, heavy, double or triple insulated windows that face the sun help to create a warm environment filled with natural light. Individual temperature controls should be in each learning space. Trying to properly climatize an entire educational facility is impossible, due to too many variables within each space.
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