Fun with statistics – Building Schools for the Future


“Fun with Statistics” doesn’t sound like a bright Monday morning blog post subject, but bear with me a while.

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The minimum cell space allocation for each prisoner to avoid torture or degrading treatment,
as recommended by the Council of Europe "European Committee for the Prevention of Torture and Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment” link


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The teaching space allocation for a secondary school pupil,
according to BB98 (the non-statutory guidance used for school design), based on a 1,000 pupil school. The space allocation extends to a lavish 6m2 in total if you include all teaching, meeting, social and staff space (like the staffroom!)

And, if you’re in favour of silly statistical comparisons, then what about:

  • £5,600 a year – the average annual spend on a second pupil, according to Hansard
  • £37,500 a year the average annual spend on a prisoner, according to Hansard
Comments (2)

  1. stephenjw says:

    Space and Finance

    Secondary pupils spend 5 hours in lessons, 15 min at break and 40 mins at lunchtime in my school.  Have no food supplied and do not need to be looked after 24/7.  Suppervision in school is much less intensive than in prision (I hope!).  Most school students are much more socilised than most of prison population.

    I do not think it is a valid comparison to make.

    I am a teacher not a Prison officer.

  2. arichards says:

    Hi Stephenjw,

    I think you may be missing Rays point slightly. He is trying to make the valid point (and I am a verteran of PFI) that the rules to which Schools and LEA’s have to adhere to when designining Schools is outdated.

    We won’t get true ‘Schools For The Future’ until the powers that be get from behind their desks and smell the coffee (or real world).

    If we continue to stick to outdated guidelines we will only have more of the same not true ‘future Schools’

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