Education is considered as one of the most important social and political priorities, to which much effort is dedicated in financial terms. As the size of the educational sector grows, governments throughout Europe and elsewhere are mobilising resources to build educational facilities that respond to new demands. Within that context, architects and educators in many countries have set out to design the school of the future and policy makers have tried to make the best choices in terms of school planning and management.
An international seminar organised by the OECD Programme on Educational Building (PEB); the Ministry of Education and Science, Ireland; and the National University of Ireland, Galway will take place in NUI, Galway from the 1-4 September, 2002. The seminar will be officially opened by Mr. Noel Dempsey. T.D., Minister for Education and Science, at 9.00 a.m. on Monday 2 September in the Ó Tnúthail Theatre, Arts Millennium Building, NUI, Galway.
The quality of the delivery of education and training in the knowledge society depends to some extent on the appropriate design of educational buildings. Facilities must be of good quality, flexible, and must meet the needs of their users. The purpose of the seminar is to look at some recent attempts to conceive the school of tomorrow and to give an idea of what has been concretely achieved and what evolutions can be expected in the near future.
The event will concentrate on existing examples of innovative institutions in various countries and will attempt to define some of the basic concepts that will affect the future of school buildings. Participants will have the opportunity to study current and potential future international developments, to exchange experience and to draw conclusions for their own work.
Issues which will be addressed at the seminar include the following:
- What are the major current trends in school design that can be identified at international level? How do situations vary from one country to another and why?
- What are the major developments that will affect the design of school buildings in the future? How will school building design concretely respond to those challenges?
- To which extent do information and communication technologies impact on the design of educational facilities? How does school building design reflect the priorities of sustainable development?
- What recommendations can be formulated regarding the configuration of the school of the future? Which actions should or could be taken on the national/international level?
- How should some important questions about financing be articulated with the question of the design of educational facilities? What evolutions can be expected?
An exhibition presenting educational institutions featured in the OECD Programme on Educational Building compendium of exemplary educational facilities, Designs for Learning, published in 2001, will take place in conjunction with the seminar.
Information from: Máire Mhic Uidhir, Press Officer, NUI, Galway. Tel. 091-750418; Mobile 087-2986592.