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Architecture Foundation goes back to school in Southwark


The Architecture Foundation has launched a competition for improving secondary schools following its aborted arrangement with Dominic Cullinan Architects earlier this year.

The competition, being run with the riba, is called School Works and aims to address how improvements in secondary-school buildings might enhance academic achievement, through a 'provocative project', the re-design of Kingsdale School in the London Borough of Southwark.

This follows a collaboration between Dominic Cullinan Architects, senjit (the Special Educational Needs Joint Initiative for Training, part of the Institute of Education at the University of London) and the Foundation, which was dissolved on 21 July. senjit subsequently denied that the collaboration failed because Cullinan was unhappy that the pilot project had to go to competition, citing instead 'other professional and technical reasons'.

The School Works competition has the backing of Schools Standards Minister Estelle Morris. Details are available from the riba Competitions Office. A winner will be chosen by competitive interview in January and will then go forward to develop a brief in a team also including an educational psychologist and an artist. The outcome will include a manual of ideas which could be applied to other schools.

Cullinan, now part of Cullinan and Buck Architects, declined to comment on the competition, but is still working with senjit on a collaboration called Makeover@School, which the two organisations hope will result in a built project.

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