New School Design Research Comes to Fore During Bullying Prevention Month
New Jersey – With October being “Bullying Prevention Month,” the American Institute of Architects – New Jersey (AIA-NJ) has released a Safe School Design Task Force whitepaper focusing on how architects can play a leading role in “Building Out Bullying” by designing learning environments to positively impact behaviors, improve mental health, and create a more welcoming, inclusive K-12 safe school culture.
According to the findings of Task Force co-chair Jeanne Perantoni, senior principal of SSP Architects who wrote the whitepaper, there are three organizing principles where architects can make a difference in reducing bullying in schools. They are maximizing visibility, optimizing comfort, and improving socio-emotional competencies within classrooms.
“This includes creating designs that help reduce stress, limit isolation, and inspire children to play and explore,” said Perantoni.
How Can Architectural Design Reduce Bullying in Schools?
Ways architects can help reduce bullying in schools that are detailed in the “Building Out Bullying” checklist include:
- Selecting appropriate furnishings to increase students’ choice, mobility, and collaboration – thereby enhancing their self-esteem and autonomy.
- Implementing and sustaining a safe and supportive school atmosphere, which has shown in studies to decrease instances of bullying and cyberbullying – while improving outcomes for those being bullied.
- Adapting school layouts to facilitate supervision and encourage more positive interactions between staff and students to help build trust and rapport – especially during break time.
- Equipping schools with areas of calm refuge, places for reflection and sensory rejuvenation.
- Providing barrier-free access to well-monitored, all-gender, and sex-separated bathrooms providing choice and inclusion.
Learn More About How Architects Can Identify Effective Approaches to Bullying Prevention
For further insights regarding how architects can help reduce school bullying, see Perantoni’s whitepaper here.
To learn more about ways to make schools in your district safer and more secure with the help of incorporating designs that promote student well-being and reduce bullying, contact Marcus Rosenau, principal of SSP Architects and a member of the AIA-NJ Safe School Task Force, at 908-725-7800 or email@example.com.