As part of its commitment to creating a family-friendly campus, Staffordshire University is starting work on a £4.4m new woodland nursery and forest school in the new year.
The new facilities will more than double the provider’s existing nursery capacity to meet a high demand for nursery places from students and staff, as well as the wider local community.
It will also be able to provide childcare and education for children from five to 12 years outside of term time, and will incorporate a forest school facility, enabling children aged between three and seven to experience outdoor learning opportunities.
The new building also has additional capacity for a 24-place classroom and observational suite which can be used by trainee teachers, social workers, special educational needs coordinators, and students at the university.
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“The new facilities will build upon the excellent care that we provide in our existing nursery, whilst also allowing more children across our community the opportunity to gain access to high-quality early-years education,” said Andrew Proctor, pro-vice chancellor (digital) at Staffordshire University.
We believe that the nursery will truly offer the best of both the digital and physical world, creating an engaging and exciting learning environment for children to be part of – Andrew Proctor, Staffordshire University
“We believe that the nursery will truly offer the best of both the digital and physical world, creating an engaging and exciting learning environment for children to be part of. We can’t wait to welcome the first intake in 2022.”
On completion in 2022, the building is expected to become the first net-zero carbon facility on campus having been designed using passive and highly efficient technologies for heating, cooling, and ventilation.
Work on the nursery and forest school is set to start in early 2021, with leading construction company Henry Brothers Midlands appointed as the main contractor. The project team consists of Mace as project and cost managers, Feilden Clegg Bradley Studios as lead designer and architect, Max Fordham as building services engineers, Civic Engineers as structural engineers and transport consultants, and Re-form Landscape as landscape designers.