Dispelling Modular Classroom Myths Within Your Community
If you represent a public, private or charter school looking to address student population growth through the use of modular classrooms, either temporarily or permanently, you’re certainly not alone. The National Center for Educational Statistics reports that 31% of surveyed schools have used temporary, portable classrooms. Additionally, the Modular Building Institute reports that the educational market makes up 26% of the permanent modular market.
But spurred on by reports of inferior mobile classrooms of the past, many parents in the community may be resistant to your district’s plans of implementing modular classrooms on your school’s campus.
To help calm their fears, we’re providing information you can use to address some of the common modular classroom myths that your community might hold as true.
Air Quality Leads to Unhealthy Kids
The most publicized disadvantage of modular classrooms of the past is trouble with indoor air quality, triggering allergies and asthma in students and teachers. Additionally, reports surfaced of ventilation troubles triggered by teachers turning off HVAC systems due to noise levels. You may hear kick-back from the community about modular classrooms and health concerns.
To combat this modular classroom myth, you can share respected, third-party reports that show how modular educational spaces have become more energy-efficient and healthier for their occupants over the generations. The Northwest Portable Classroom Project run by Washington State University found that portable classrooms built in 1993 were 44% more energy-efficient than models built 25 years before. The project also showed that modular classrooms built in 2000 were 20% more energy-efficient than those built just seven years prior.
Additionally, the California Air Resources Board and the California Department of Health Services released a comprehensive study on indoor air quality in relocatable classrooms in 2004. At nearly 350 schools, the teams selected three teachers, two from modular classrooms and one from a traditional classroom, to complete a detailed questionnaire about their classroom. Air samples were also taken from two-thirds of the schools.
- Sixty percent of teachers in portables indicated they turn off ventilation systems at times due to excess noise. Overall, the HVAC systems delivered adequate outdoor air and total airflows when operated properly, so design capacity did not appear to be a common problem in this study.
While they cost a little more, roof mounted or pad mounted HVAC units may be an option to reduce system noise and keep a healthy air quality.
Can Students Access the Internet in a Portable Classroom?
Concern that their children will be learning in an inferior environment may also be top of mind with parents. They believe that these students won’t have access to all of the technology that students in mainstream classrooms have available to them.
This modular classroom myth can be easily corrected by showing all of the technological upgrades that can be incorporated into your district’s new temporary or permanent modular classrooms. Today’s modular classrooms are designed to be tech-ready. They can be wired for the same high-speed data connectivity and include the same smart boards, projectors, or charging stations that classrooms in the main academic buildings provide.
Ready to solve your space needs?
Modular buildings are the way to go. Request a quote or contact us today to get the conversation started. We’d love to talk to you about how modular can meet — and exceed — your needs.