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Education Act 1902

To report on the Wootton National School under the above Act for and on behalf of the County Council of the Isle of Wight, by Mr. John H. Blizard, [Messrs. Lemon and Blizard], Fellow of the Surveyors Institute, A.M.Inst.C.E., Member Sanitary Institute, etc, Architect and Surveyor, Southampton.

1. General Description

This school is situated between the Red Road and New Road at Wootton, and has a Westerly aspect. There is a public footpath from New Road to Red Road and a waste piece of land between that and the school site.

2. Accommodation

The accommodation is as follows: -

The schoolroom is 61 feet 4 inches by 18 feet 2 inches with a height of 12 feet to plate, with open ceiling to the ridge of the roof. The South classroom on the East side is 15 feet 9 inches by 16 feet, by a height of 10 feet 9inches to plate, with open ceiling as before.

Another classroom on the same side is 21 feet by 16 feet, height to the plate on the North side of 6 feet 7 inches, rising to a beam 10 feet from the floor. The springing of the main roof being 10 feet 9 inches, the same as the mixed room.

On the North West corner is the girls and infants cloakroom 16 feet 8 inches by 6 feet, adjoining which is a small yard about 10 feet by 7 feet 4 inches. In this yard is a covered shed 7 feet 3 inches by 7 feet with three portable washing basins. On the South West corner is the boys entrance, with a cloakroom 16 feet 8 inches by 6 feet, this is covered by a roof, but with an open side; there is also a small covered space with three portable washing basins.

The yard adjoining is about 12 feet by 9 feet 9 inches in which offices are built; these are about 5 feet away from the corner of the school building.

3. Furniture

3.1. The mixed school.

Quantity 4 Nine feet long ordinary desks.
Quantity 12 Seven feet six inches long desks [tops of seats have lately been renewed to old standards].
Quantity 7 Eight feet long desks with adjustable tops.
None of the seats have backs; various cupboards, harmonium, masters desk on platform and general appliances for teaching.

3.2. South Classroom.

A small gallery on the West side rising two steps, there are no desks, only forms being used by the children. This room can be shut off from the adjoining classroom by folding doors. It has a separate entrance from the middle schoolroom, but no entrance from the outside.

3.3. North Classroom.

A gallery rising two steps containing three desks each 6 feet long, there are also quantity three 10 feet 6 inch long desks, all desks have backs to seats.

3.4. The school roll consists of -

Main School [mixed] 111
North Classroom [infants] 37
South Classroom 28
Total 176

The above total of 176 assumes the North classroom is suitable for teaching, however the North side height to plate is only 6 feet 7 inches. This does not comply with rule 5 and 7 as laid down by the Board of Education and need to be modified before the classroom is used.
Note: - Accommodation returned listed by the school managers show places for 206 children.

4. Structure

The structure is of brick, with slated roof, general condition is fair.

4.1. External repairs.

The buildings have quite recently been put in order, the woodwork etc. painted. The paving of the yard and cloakrooms however has been overlooked, it is in very bad condition, quite beyond repair and the whole area should be re-laid.
Eaves gutters should be fixed to the girls play shed.

The roof is in fair condition, with a few loose slates, the roof’s generally should be overhauled and put in proper repair.

4.2. Internal Repairs.

The whole of the rooms should be cleansed as follows, the ceiling should be whitened, the walls re-coloured, and the whole of the paintwork or varnish, should be redone as necessary, the hat and coat pegs examined and made good where defective or deficient, floorboards examined and made good as required.

The sills of these windows should be lowered if the levels of Red Road permit. The whole of the sashes in the windows should be made to open, this will enable the master to properly air flush the school.

5. Sanitary

The boy’s offices are situated on the South-West corner of the school property, and are within 5 feet of the building and close to the boys entrance, the distance between the angle of the school and the angle of the small building used for flushing apparatus is only 3 feet 4 inches, the passage between the South end of the school and the South boundary is an average of 4 feet 6 inches. These offices should be pulled down to give more air space in the yard, and prevent any smells of the future getting into the school, as I am sure they do at present. The new offices should be erected in the playground away from the school buildings, and constructed in accordance with Rule 16 of the Education Code, with proper automatic flushing and not regulated by the Master as at present. There is a urinal only 2 feet 4 inches wide, with no spare pipe for flushing, the water supply being regulated by the master. There are three stalls over a stoneware trough, flushed from a tank, which does not work automatically. There are no separate toilets for teachers.

There are some lavatory basins, which are not fixed and have no running water; the water is taken by bucket, the wastewater exiting to a gully close by.

The girl’s offices are situated on the Northwest side of the site at the back of the Masters house. There are four stalls and one for the Master and his family, which is partitioned off. At the end there is a small urinal, which is only 2 feet wide for boy infants with no flushing facilities. The trough of the girl’s offices has the same flushing arrangements as the boys. These offices are away from the playground and are private except the wall abutting Red Road is dwarfed and should be raised to at least 6 feet with a door fixed in lieu of the present gate. The offices could be retained and made perfectly sanitary, providing water supply was automatic.

The infants urinals could be enlarged without much expense.

Water is supplied from the district main and has a good pressure.

The stack pipes should be disconnected from the drains and routed to discharge over trapped gullies, the main drains located and proper ventilating pipes fitted.

Note: - It must be assumed that “offices” are in fact toilets.

6. Playgrounds

There is one playground, the entrance being from New Road. It is gravelled but has no system of drainage. If new offices are arranged for boys, the playground should be divided for boys, girls and infants. The whole of the furniture should be examined and repaired as required.

7. Heating, Ventilation and Lighting

7.1. Heating.

Mixed room, this is heated by two open fires, each 1 foot 9 inches wide, the two classrooms each have an open stove with a 1 foot 5 inches opening; this is insufficient for the warming of the school. Provision should be made to warm the school as required by Rule 14 of the Code, either by special ventilating stoves or a system of low pressure hot water pipe, this should be done in conjunction with the ventilating system.

7.2. Ventilation.

There is no system of ventilation in the school. This question has been previously looked at by the school managers as certain iron pipes have been brought in through the walls and carried up as inlets for fresh air; they are no good unless outlets are provided. In each gable are small louvre frames, which were intended as outlet ventilators, but often work as inlets.

The girls' cloakroom has an open doorway and a small window at the East end, a portion of this being ‘sash’ opening; this is inadequate, even for ‘flush out ventilation’. The sashes should be capable of being used and an outlet provided in the roof to extract the ‘vitiated’ air and prevent the smell of clothes being blown through the building.

The boys' cloakroom is similar to the girls, except that it has a larger opening to air and no window for ventilation. A proper system of inlet and outlet ventilators should be provided in line with the school requirements; this requires three air changes per hour and improved heating.

7.3 Lighting.

The lighting in the main schoolroom is acceptable. The South window is divided into six lights with transom on the springing of the pointed arch, height of sill is 6 feet from the floor line and the window is 11 feet high [17 feet from floor line]. These windows are fixed and only with a top opening centre sash.

There are three windows on the East side with pointed arches, the sill levels being at 6 feet the transom 10 feet 3 inches with a pointed arch above. The windows are fixed with only top centre sash opening in each frame.

8. South Classroom

The height of the sill from the floor is about 7 feet 4 inches or 6 feet 2 inches from the top step of small gallery, this is too high as children working in the gallery are in shadow and light is unacceptable. Width of window is 6 feet by 5 feet 8 inches high and divided into six lights with only the top centre opening.

9. North Classroom

There is a window on the West side as per the South classroom, there is an additional window in he lower part of the room 3 feet 9 inches to sill level, 2 feet 8 inches wide, divided into sashes, the upper 12 inches only capable of opening. The area of the playground, which gets plenty of sunlight and has boundary walls, is ample for the school needs.

10. Teacher’s House

There is a school house attached with the following accommodation:

10.1.Ground Floor

Hall, parlour, kitchen, scullery and a small covered space at the back of the scullery with larder; sink with waste drain and running water.

10.2 First Floor

Three bedrooms accessed from the landing. At the back of the girls' store, is a building, which belongs to the Master. It has been used as a temporary cooking classroom, but is not suitable for this purpose and has not been included in my report.

11. Conclusion

The school could be adapted to meet the Education Act requirements if the work outlined in this report was carried out. In addition, the door from the South classroom into the boys' cloakroom should be made a separate entrance. Consideration should be given to moving the boys' entrance to the Southeast corner; blocking up the existing entrance, and moving the girls' cloakroom to the East side.

The mixed school should be divided into two or three classes using moveable partitions.

Due to the school adjoining Red Road it is not possible to re-configure the building to allow access from a corridor to individual classrooms.

Signed. John H. Blizard

[Report not dated but assumed circ 1902]

This page was last edited on: 26th January, 2022 17:50:27

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