Liam Madden & Neil Ferries in collaboration with Stephen Miles Architects & City Building, Glasgow.


Tasou associates, London. A place to grow.


Green dwell, Thailand. Butterfly Effect.


Tumpa Husna Yasmin, Mita Solanki. Flat-pack school


in situ studio with Matt Weiss and David Hill, AIA, USA. Frame:scapes


Eleena Jamil Architects, Malaysia. Touches the ground lightly school


Site-Specific Company Limited with E.A.T. Chutayaves Sinthuphan, Yanyadech Phornphong, Pawit Prompong, Rungroj Metchanan, Buttriya Ruamthammarak, Pasit Sirithanaaree


João Guimarães, Miguel Magalhães,  Portugal. No border school


EsMiMi+1- Ester del Palacio, Miren Escartin, Miguel Sánchez and Manuel Sánchez. MoWooD.



The winner of the School 4 Burma Design competition is... Drum roll...

...  Design by Amadeo Bennetta / Daniel LaRossa, Berkeley, CA, USA. The design utilizes a prefabricated adaptable framework and  heavy-duty, waterproof fabric in conjunction with locally crafted, modular, bamboo panels.  By creating entirely flatpacked components, BURMA [RE]FRAMED can be rapidly [RE]ASSEMBLED from a flatbed truck into a courtyard school [shown], a single building, or even as independent, multi-use units. The flexibility of the scheme to responding to a variety of site conditions was the determining factor in success. 'comment'





Honourable mentions (in no particular order) go to the following submissions;


The design by Liam Madden & Neil Ferries in collaboration with Stephen Miles Architects & City Building explores the ideas of approachability and openness as well as enclosure and reinterprets the common vernacular architecture of South East Asia while remaining sympathetic to its tropical surroundings. The form represents continuity giving 360 views and an enclosed garden constitutes a private space of sanctuary for the children. 'more'





'A place to grow' is made up of modular cassettes twinned with lightweight bamboo screens. The integration of plants into the building are utilised to teach about horticulture, food production, self-sufficiency and instil a sense of 'putting down roots'. The nature of the green walls gives the building a playful chameleon like aesthetic. The elements are able to be broken down into small enough modular components to move by pedal power if the need arises. 'more'








This design from Green Dwell highlights the necessity for multi functionality of space with limited resources which leads to a dynamic learning experience for children and teachers. This emphasis on change runs through the project with multiple levels, layers and landings offering the chance to transform the spaces within. The architects hope the overall design instils within the children the concept that adapting to various external factors and pressures is a strength and should not by necessarily be viewed as a bad thing! 'more'







The flexibility of joints and overall panelization allow the building to be folded down and flat-packed into 4m x 4m modules taken to a new site where the reverse takes place - recreating the old school on a new site. The environmental strategy includes water management system, ventilation system, and a high level of solar control. When you consider this matched up with sustainable materials of wood and bamboo it makes this a real environmentally friendly option with great internal circulation space and open learning aesthetic. 'more'







This simple A-frame design maximises the space and scale while keeping the materials to a minimum only a quarter of the footprint of the school is given to classrooms. Beyond the support spaces, nearly half the footprint is dedicated to elevated, exterior public space. These generous porches wrap the entire school framework and provide a central gathering point for the community. Though the school building is entirely demountable, the structure holds a sacred position in the community, reminding us that temporality does not imply provisional cheapness. 'more'







Our proposal is inspired by the architecture of traditional dwellings of the area where they are commonly raised on stilts and made from bamboo and other natural materials. Bamboo is a cheap and readily available material and here, it is used to build a series of lightweight and modular teaching spaces connected by a large raised deck. The deck becomes the heart of the school. It is a sheltered space that will become a place for meeting, playing, eating and informal teaching... 'more'








The designers of Sathublae school believe that the right kind of architecture can create the sense of belonging and the sense of ownership in the hearts of the displaced Karen community members creating a school that the community can say is 'made by us' and 'made for us'. The both modular and rearrangable design based on a 'Sliding Puzzle' creates an architectural paradigm of flexibility. The design utilises prefabricated elements with traditional bamboo carpentry to successfully marry old and new into a dynamic set of forms. 'more'









The project seeks to demonstrate to the community how enhanced traditional building techniques provide real possibility for future building development: low cost, low tech construction that they can build with their own resources they become the key part of the solution. The construction process can help address the (common) issue of unemployment and unskilled workforce between the refugees, in addition to strengthening relationships among the villagers and reinforcing the sense of community. The school anchors itself around a tree which becomes a symbol of inclusivity and learning. 'more'





The program is divided in two linear structures with a space to learn & play, and a space to extend the uses from inside to outside. The two mono-pitched structures sitting back to back create a circulation space and over all dynamic form. Children are given a mezzanine space in which to rest and sleep, elevated above the learning spaces. The reliance on timber and bamboo fixes the building naturally into the either an urban setting or the backdrop of the surrounding countryside. 'more'

The winner of the student category hush...

...Ms.Gauri Satam and Mr.Tejesh Patil. The students from Sir J.J. College of Architecture use basic design principles of anthropometric/scale along with simple striking colors thus naturally creating a welcoming feel towards knowledge and a learning institution for young minds. The design is homogeneous in terms of material but visually advanced. A metaphor for growth and advancement keeping the root intact. 'more'






With an incredibly detailed structure the team shows an impressive knowledge of the need for repeated elements and connections. Utilising a metal skeletal structure, OSB and wooden boards to good effect, with water collection and a clear strategy to prevent overheating of internal spaces made this a clear favourite. 'more'








Uwe Kartmann titled the proposal 'Daheim' (German for 'Home') placing importance on the building design strengthening the children's solidarity, because of their difficult pasts and their resulting status as migrants/refugees. The design is an almost closed building with a wide passage and two big welcoming entrances. The passage serves as canteen area and is completely sheltered. The rooms on both sides are open and create a communicative atmosphere in the centre.'more'







This modular free-standing school design operates from the standpoint of simplicity, creating an educational building that can be easily constructed/deconstructed and transported; while also promoting local materials and a place of learning for the community. The school can be transported and built completely using hand labor and a pick-up truck. The building is flexible, with a construction system that can expand or take on other forms with regard to programmatic or spatial needs. Furnishings and other modular elements have been designed in a way that they can hang off the major structure. 'more'







'Home Away from Home' Utilises shipping containers that open in a 'wing-like' fashion to create open, yet secure, lockable classrooms, canteen areas and play spaces. The team of students from Karachi show a scheme that could be rapidly deployed, set up and moved on within very little time. The minimal use of containers around a courtyard design reinforces a sense of community and protection for the users. 'more'

Winner: Ms.Gauri Satam, Mr.Tejesh Patil. Sir J.J. College of Architecture, Mumbai, India


Vasileios Pliotas, Tzatha Xanthippi. ' eCollector' Technical University of Crete & Greek National Technical University of Athens


Uwe Kartmann, Daheim. Hochschule Coburg, University of applied sciences, interior design, Germany.


Nathan Hemming. 'Carry-able Modularity', msa | münster school of architecture.


Syed Muahid Hussain, Sakina Talib, Arsalan Khan, Mahrosh Mumtaz, Ayesha Aziz. Department of Visual Studies, University of Karachi.












Many thanks to all those who took part the standard of design submissions were fantastic. One of the ultimate deciding factors in the decision process was the flexibility of the design to responding to new sites. This became more apparent when 5 weeks ago we received an email from the head master of the school telling us his intentions to move to a new site. The new site is much smaller and has a large pond in the middle of it.

At first we baulked at this but then we realised this was the nature of the brief we had written and the circumstances that the children and people at the school have to live with. It brought into perspective the fragility of their existence as migrant people on the border and the unsustainable future they have there. We are glad that we are able to try and provide them with a sustainable schooling alternative in the form of the mobile modular school building.

We are now in the process of taking the winning design to the next stages with construction and production drawings so that we can start the build next year. We are also looking for funding for some of the runner up designs for other schools in the area. Again thank you to all those who took part and please look out for news on the accompanying exhibition and book/let that we are working on called 'Moving Schools.'