Adapting English Schools Sites to Reduce Predicted Overheating Impacts Resulting from Climate Change

Temperatures in less than one in six English classrooms were considered adequate throughout the year, according to the first Building Schools for the Future programme report. Overheating is of particular concern as it can not only reduce educational performance but also undermine the health and well‐being of occupants.

AECOM with Rex Proctor and Edward Cullinan Architects undertook this study for Partnerships for Schools (the former national schools delivery body for England). Through the modelling of different types of climate mitigation measures, under different climate scenarios, the project developed costed design, operation and management guidance for different types of schools. Despite limited budget for both new and refurbished schools, England’s Education Funding Agency has introduced more stringent thermal management specifications within contractual arrangements for new and retrofit school projects.

The case study highlighted the following lessons learned:

  • Climate change‐related risks to be addressed in a design should be agreed as early as possible and assessments then carried out immediately.
  • Certain design adaptations may have no or low impact on overall construction costs.
  • Early client agreement is necessary about the extent to which each climate change related risk should be mitigated, as constrained by the available budget.

This case study is one of a series produced by members of ARISE, the UNISDR Private Sector Alliance for Disaster Resilient Societies.

2 p.


Climate Change, Education & School Safety, Private Sector, Disaster Risk Management, Critical Infrastructure, Children and Youth
Heat Wave
United Kingdom
VI Regional Platform for Disaster Risk Reduction in the Americas, Cartagena, Colombia 20-22 June 2018 VI Regional Platform for Disaster Risk Reduction in the Americas, Cartagena, Colombia 20-22 June 2018.
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