Rotherhithe children and teachers move into school they helped design

Chiara Giordano (09 November, 2017) Education Regeneration

20023Children, parents and staff in Albion Primary School's new building

Rotherhithe children are settling into a new school designed by staff and pupils.

Pupils poured into the revamped Albion Primary School last week after it opened its doors for the first time.

Staff and governors worked with architects Haverstock to design the building, which will allow the school to become two-form entry and take on 210 more pupils.

And even the children had their say in the plans for the school, which features a rooftop terrace, sports hall, studio, and outdoor space for every classroom.

Headteacher Penny White said the school was “amazing” and that staff and pupils had “ended up with just about everything [they] wanted”.

“It’s lovely just being able to sit here [in the foyer] and see everybody around and the school working,” she said.

“The hall is amazing because it’s a full-sized sports hall and this space [in the foyer] is fantastic.

“The children love the studio and they love the roof terrace; we’ve been very clear that it’s not a playground, it’s a roof terrace and will probably be used more for learning than for play.

“Considering they’ve only been in here for four days I think they are loving all the space and appreciating it.”

The school, which took about eighteen months to build, has a ground floor plus two storeys, and a lift for disabled access.

There are rooms for group activities and break-out areas for reading and study, as well as an area for reading and sitting in each classroom.

The classrooms on the ground floor can spill out into a courtyard, while the first and second-floor classrooms have balconies and access to the rooftop terrace.

The school will also soon benefit from a multi-use games area.

Cllr Victoria Mills, Southwark’s cabinet member for children and schools, said: “One of the real stand out successes of Southwark Council’s investment in local schools is that education teams have been able to create schools that fit their needs.

“At Albion Primary School, pupils and staff have a school that works for them and I am very pleased to hear that parents, teachers and the pupils love their new facilities.

“The final product is really impressive and the investment from Southwark Council has helped provide an excellent space to teach and learn.”

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