A blog written by Crown Paints
Richard Green, Architect and Design Consultant at Crown Paints, discusses paint specification in the education sector, where a tailored approach to products and colour plays a vital role in establishing the right environment for learning.
From primary schools to universities, the education sector presents a multitude of challenges when it comes to specifying paint.
With a mix of architectural styles and operational layouts, consideration of the appropriate products to withstand a constant daily flow of heavy traffic and uses, must be balanced with the opportunity to utilise colour to inspire students and staff.
Additionally, the combination of performance maintenance requirements and the considerable percentage of legacy buildings still in operation in the UK, means there is an opportunity for specifying paint products that will provide long term cost benefits and reduce ongoing maintenance requirements.
Crown Paints has long been a specialist supplier to the education sector, and they have used their experience to develop many specialised products that meet the unique demands of educational use.
Both their specification and architect & design teams work closely with educational institutions to devise bespoke paint packages and colour schemes. This helps management of maintenance cycles and ensures that colour is used thoughtfully, to enhance wayfinding, provide zoning, and foster an atmosphere that boosts productivity and aids concentration.
Top Marks for High Performing Products
Within a single educational facility there’s commonly a variety of challenges to meet, to address different specific uses.
Classrooms are subject to the most regular usage and therefore an increased likelihood of scuffs and spills. Crown Trade Clean Extreme Scrubbable emulsions are formulated to provide a highly durable washable finish, allowing for repetitive cleaning whilst providing excellent stain resistance.
For internal and external trim areas, quick drying Crown Trade Fastflow Satin and Gloss products are an ideal solution to minimise disruption due to their low solvent formulation.
Corridors and stairwells often require additional fire safety measures, so Crown specify products such as the Crown Trade Timonox range, which is flame retardant, offering protection in the event of a fire by slowing down the spread, allowing occupants to leave the building safely.
Sports halls and gymnasiums are another high usage area within educational facilities that are typically multi-functional, with high levels of footfall – and typically wooden floors. Repetitive cleaning causes major abrasion, so a high-performance varnish such as Crown’s Sadolin PV67 that offers hard wearing, anti-slip and scratch resistance finish, is vital.
Changing rooms and shower rooms are another area that require specialist attention, often due to issues with ventilation and condensation. Crown Trade Clean Extreme Mould Inhibiting Scrubbable Matt acts as an ideal preventative measure, specially developed to maintain decorated surfaces that are prone to mould.
Hygiene is particularly important in kitchens and food-service areas such as canteens. The Crown Trade Clean Extreme Scrubbable Anti-Bacterial provides advanced protection needed for these areas. This range has been specifically formulated and utilises the natural power of silver to limit the growth of bacteria such as MRSA, Salmonella and E.Coli.
Colour in the Classroom
After 18-months of disruption to education due to the global pandemic, the power of colour can transform facilities into environments that are not just visually appealing, but that also significantly improve productivity and encourage learning.
With their vast experience in this sector, Crown has developed three colour palettes aligned with education needs at the key stages of the UK schooling system: primary; secondary and colleges; and finally, universities.
The impact of colour varies by age. With nurseries and primary schools, it’s about creating a setting that encourages playfulness and creativity – young children respond better to vibrant colours that bring fun and energy.
Whereas in secondary schools and colleges, colour can be used to encourage learning and productivity, typically secondary and tertiary shades.
In higher education, colour is used to create a mature learning environment and focus, within universities this helps to boost productivity – and in student accommodation, colour helps to bring balance for both home study and relaxation.
The team at Crown bring years of experience to help specifiers produce the right colour scheme for the specific educational stage they are designing for.
To find out more, download the Education Colour Book for advice from Crown’s colour experts. Or get in touch with Crown’s education specification team.