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Queensland in its early years was burdened with problems of vast distances, scattered populations and limited resources. The Department of Public Works produced a standardised timber school design that was easy and economical to build, enabling the government to introduce education to developing areas of the state.
Designs between the 1920s and 1950s allowed future extensions to buildings as student numbers rose. These sectional schools notably incorporated large areas of glazing in the southern walls of classrooms, providing left-hand side lighting for predominantly right-handed students.
By 1973, the emphasis in schoolroom design had changed to double teaching areas, with light tables and chairs which could be easily moved around to facilitate study and discussion groups in various parts of the classroom.
In 1981 Cabinet established a committee drawn from the Co-ordinator-General’s Department, the Education Department and the Public Works Department to review the design of primary schools. Emphasis was to be given to designs which would facilitate community use of school buildings and grounds, use of transportable buildings to absorb short-lived peak school enrolments and improved security against vandalism and fire, which had become a major problem.
The development of secondary school design followed that of primary schools and accommodated changing teaching practices which included greater use of laboratories, libraries and resource centres.

Last updated 11 June 2014    Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0)

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