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A well educated population is the real strength of the county. Hence, providing a good quality education is a necessity of the time. In India, a large amount of the population gets education from government schools. The lack of infrastructural facilities has resulted in poor educational status of our country. The brief focuses on how government schools are an important part of the social structure and the need to redesign them for the current changing educational policies. The design needs to be an ideal module that can be repeated all around the country as upcoming government schools.
The following design proposal is for a government school, in Phulwari Sharif of Patna. The design is inspired from the space qualities of ancient Nalanda University, and guided by the principles from the Preamble of Indian Constitution. The spatial arrangement is dealt as per the level of discipline and formality that a space demands. Broadly, four zones having different grades of formality are classified, and the desired discipline is provided in terms of movement through that zone. The complex fits within a grid of concentric circles and their radial projections. The circular form is developed to cater the need to create a focal point for the entire complex and to provide flexibility for radial expansion in future. This rhythmic pattern thus forms a formula for the complex to be repeated all around the nation as per different needs of every school.
The cluster of classrooms is placed centrally with other formal learning spaces on the circumference for easy transition and to monitor student's activities. This cluster of classrooms are designed for formalized learning activities with a clearstory opening and windows which provides diffused sunlight and proper ventilation. The ring of transitional spaces connects all the spaces together which further is divided by radial paths to provide additional flexibility of movement. With all the classrooms forming a backdrop for the performance space, the amphitheatre is the central informal zone for students to have debate and discussions, seminars, outdoor classes, etc. The transition elements link all the spaces forming a ring around the central amphitheatre. They form small green pockets between them to promote spaces for individual growth of students through interactive learning.
The central straight transition cuts the transitional ring under pergolas. These pergolas also form a frame for the central display wall and pond. This wall can be used to exhibit works produced by students and celebrate their achievements. An outdoor open reading space is provided behind the library block. This corner of the site is isolated by a series of trees around and thus forms a silent reading area. Vegetation is added in every part of the site to increase green spaces and form an interactive outdoor environment.
Passive strategies of rain water harvesting and solar electric panels are used to make sustainable growth. The school can thus be self-sufficient and can provide the finest quality of education for intellectual development of every individual. An attempt is made to design a school that will support the current educational policy and can evolve with the ever increasing spatial needs of educational programs.

Viresh Desai
Shakti Jadhav

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