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A Lesson On Specifying For The Education Sector

5 April 2022

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.

At Crown paints, we have a long history of supplying to the education sector and have used our expertise to develop a number of specialised products that meet the unique demands of educational use.

Both our 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. Our 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, our quick drying 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 we also specify products such as the 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 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. Our 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. Our 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.

Leaning on our expertise in the sector, we’ve also 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.

Our teams bring years of experience to help specifiers produce the right colour scheme for the specific educational stage they are designing for.