You don’t have to travel to Scandinavia to find exemplary educational institutions: Akademeia High School in Warsaw competes with the most progressive schools of the world both in terms of mentality and architecture.
Written by Orsolya Gyöngy
According to the results of the latest PISA study, Polish education is not only remarkable amongst the V4 countries; it also stands out on a world level. If we look at initiatives like the Akademeia High School in Warsaw, this comes as no surprise. The Medusa Group architect office did not design a school building based on several hundred-year-old old-fashioned principles; they primarily adjusted the designs to the needs and way of life of the students of the 21st century.
The designers of the school aimed to create a building complex in which the students are happy to hang around outside of classes, too. And they managed to achieve their goal: on the courtyard located in the center of the C-shaped building, teenagers can sit in the grass or can relax on the sun terraces located on the stairs of the amphitheater, which also gives home to numerous species of herbs. The kitchen of the school also uses these herbs, and students can consume their healthy meals in a canteen which looks rather like a fancy restaurant than a school cafeteria. After lunch break, this space transforms into a café, where the students can delve into their books in the afternoon, while they can view different performances in the evenings.
Not only the exterior of the school is dominated by a natural touch: its façade covered with wood also echoes in the interior spaces, which the designers balanced with raw concrete. Akademeia is a fine example how children can be motivated by the space they spend their days in. Such a finely composed visual environment provides perfect basis for creative thoughts – the same way the terrace does for herbs.