As part of the project to build a new Campbeltown Grammar School there has already been much work going on behind the scenes. Pupils and staff have been involved in a ‘Try before you buy’ trial project which will see a small part of the school refurbished. This will be finished and unveiled at the end of November. If the exercise is successful it could determine how the brand new secondary school in Campbeltown will look when it’s built.
The ‘try before you buy’ work is on an area on the top of the south block of the school. A number of classroom areas have been joined up to form a large multi-purpose teaching space that would be ideal for the new teaching methods associated with Curriculum for Excellence. One of the key changes will be a team of teachers teaching a whole year group at a time. This isn’t possible in the current school layout.
Government funded body, Architecture and Design Scotland has helped create the new teaching space as part of research they are doing and they’ve been providing specialist design services. The overall budget for this experimental teaching area is £75,000 however, through Architecture and Design Scotland, a number of major suppliers have offered fittings, equipment, and finishings free of charge. This includes a specialist furniture company called RSBi. It is a social enterprise which employs people who have a disability or learning difficulties.
Amongst the other work going on was a master-planning workshop with council staff and agencies like Strathclyde Fire and Rescue and Argyll Community Housing Association ( ACHA) to find out what they would like to get from the new school. Education Spokesperson, Councillor Ellen Morton said, “the workshop has been really worthwhile. Some of the comments we’ve taken on board focus on tailoring education to meet local people’s needs and looking at the school as a specialist centre for renewables research and development, working with local employers to organise training and apprenticeships. Others mention the possibility of the school having better links to primary schools and better facilities for all departments. These will be taken into account by the project team.”