We have all heard that we are a product of our environment. So, what does it say about our students and teachers? That many of them learn and work in dilapidated conditions? From crumbling buildings and uneven stairs to nails poking out of wood, it is clear there is an issue with our outdated schools. Multiple studies have shown the connection between school facilities and student achievement as well as teacher turnover.
The connection between school climate and student achievement has been known about for quite some time but has been notoriously difficult to measure. However, using annual surveys across multiple districts collected by the education department allowed the issues to be pinpointed. From 31,000 surveys it was found that an increase in school climate, measured by leadership, expectations, and safety, showed a decrease in teacher turnover by 25% and an increase in student performance from the 50th percentile to the 84th percentile with school improvements. To better understand these numbers, think about it like this: teachers leaving the school dropped by 3.8% overall and student test scores increased the same way they would have if the students had received an extra month and a half of instruction.
Providing a safe environment for students and teachers shouldn’t be an afterthought, but rather a main concern for parents, school systems, and taxpayers in general. By updating our facilities, we can take a step in improving the overall experience of our students. One easy change is exchanging wood fixtures, which often deteriorate, with high-grade aluminum. This not only improves aesthetics but also improves safety and inclusivity. Changing a set of rotting steps with a ramp helps those with mobility issues and is virtually an overnight fix.
Our students are our future and it’s important that they feel safe and enjoy their school experience. It is also crucial that we supply teachers with the surroundings they need to help our kids achieve. EZ-ACCESS is committed to developing the best products that provide the best solutions for our schools. From our FORTRESS® OSHA Stair System to our PATHWAY® HD Code Compliant Modular Access System, we have the products needed to make a lasting impression on the next generation.