Home' Teacher : May 2011 Contents 34 TEACHER MAY 2011
and hills of the Shire of Mundaring. The
classrooms and early learning centre were
designed to reflect the mountainous envi-
ronment and rural, heritage-style aesthet-
ics of the surrounding suburb and existing
school buildings. The new buildings were
finished with external custom orb cladding
to give a natural earthy look.
Most schools are committed to reducing
their ecological impact, so it is important
that modular construction incorporates the
principles of environmentally sustainable
All the buildings delivered to the Silver
Tree Steiner School, for example, were con-
structed to meet five-star energy- efficiency
Similarly, Ausco recently completed the
second of two energy- efficient projects for
South Australia's Hewett Primary School.
Complying with ecologically sustain-
able development principles, the modular
buildings specifically designed for Hewett
Primary School included fresh air require-
ments with an energy- efficient ventilation
and air- conditioning system.
A red cement cladding material was used
so the modular buildings would blend with
the existing red brick design of the school.
Hewett Primary School was so impressed
with the first project that it commissioned
Ausco to complete a second. The school has
since built other in situ buildings based on
The projects at Hewett Primary School
in turn attracted Coober Pedy Area School,
which com missioned Ausco to supply a
scaled-dow n version of the complex.
The advantage of using modular construc-
tion for large-scale, high-quality projects in
a short turnaround time was perhaps most
clearly demonstrated in Queensland follow-
ing the state government's decision to intro -
duce a Prep year from 2007.
In preparation for the increased num-
bers of children attending primary schools,
Ausco installed 250 modular buildings spe-
cifically designed for early learning.
The building specifications included easy
access, consideration of size and height
of all windows, as well as the location of
door handles. The design aimed to prevent
against injury, with glass installed in all
doors at adult and child eye level. It also
took the classroom acoustics into consid-
eration to allow comfortable sleeping areas.
The lightweight construction of modular
buildings has also made them an attractive
alternative for schools in remote Queens-
land; for example, Lockhart State School's
Prep building was recently delivered in
Lockhart River, located in the Cape
York Peninsula, is not accessible via road
or lightweight aircraft for much of the year.
Instead, Ausco delivered the prep building
to Lockhart State School, as well as the
trucks and cranes required for installation,
all via barge.
Ausco has supplied standard classroom
complexes to several other remote Aborigi-
nal communities across Cape York.
Modular buildings have been installed in
hundreds of schools -- from early learning
centres to state-of-the-art secondary school
science labs, in remote state schools to pres-
tigious private colleges. With modular build-
ings now being increasingly regarded as a
genuine alternative construction method to
traditional bricks and mortar across many
of Australia's education associations, it's
clear that modular construction can be
moulded to fit any educational need, and
that its future in the education sector is built
to last. T
Paul Bailey is the managing director
of Ausco Modular, a leading provide r
of modular, relocatable, portable and
transportable buildings with more than 20
years' experience working with the educ a-
Pictured, page 32, Coober Pedy Area
School, SA; page 34, Hewett Primary
School, SA. Photos courtesy of AUSCO
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