Ashcroft Secondary School has been selected by Luton Borough Council for inclusion in the nationwide Building Schools for the Future project. Ashcroft is a 1050 pupil school which aims to achieve a Performing Arts specialism, a requirement that will be accommodated in the new design currently being developed by RMJM.
One of the leading objectives for the design team is to improve the relationships between the departments and buildings taking into account the present site layout which consists of a main school structure flanked by a three storey block, gymnasium and further two storey block.
The aim is to expand the existing school from 1050 to 1350 pupils. Retained areas will be refurbished and new build elements will be provided to fulfil the school’s house structure and adjacency requirements.
The intention is to include new community areas and install a new ICT network infrastructure, paying particular attention to the requirement for a ‘learner centred’ and personalised system.
One of the main challenges for the design team was to maintain a fully operational school throughout the construction programme. In order to achieve this, the design team developed a number of options and indicated key dates for phasing and the projected timeframes for each phase. Through Stage 1 engagement meetings these were discussed with the School and LBC, allowing for a solution that would cause minimum disruption to the operation of the school.
Through the next stages of design development the design team worked with LBC and the School to further develop an efficient plan and thereby maximise the quality of educational spaces allowed by the budget.