Priory School is a Local Authority Maintained Community School for young people aged 11 – 19 with moderate to severe learning difficulties, many of their students also have a diagnosis of Autism. Following their recent Ofsted short inspection, Priory School continues to be recognised as a ‘Good’ school in all aspects of their provision.
At Priory School, they passionately believe that all young people with special educational needs and disabilities are entitled to access outstanding learning within their local community and they are committed to setting standards of excellence in special education that achieve the highest aspirational outcomes for all of their students.
Their new, purpose built school building is located in Hermitage Road, Upper Norwood and includes a dedicated Food Technology Preparation Kitchen, an ICT suite, Immersive Room, Gym, Lego Therapy Room, Therapy Centre, Outdoor Learning area and a Forest School which provides students with opportunities to flourish and learn new skills in a variety of learning environments outside of the classroom. The school further benefits from a purpose built Theatre Studio enabling their students to fully explore their dance, drama and creative talents in a realistic working performance space.
Their Post 16 provision provides students with their own Common Room and a fully equipped ‘Life Skills Flat’ that enables them to practice and develop both their social and independent living skills in preparation for adult life. They have also developed a wide range of work experience opportunities for Key Stage 5 learners that include hospitality, retail, farm work, hairdressing, etc. within the local community.
Priory School has been open for four years and in that time, this modern, purpose-built building has had no branding except for a logo outside on the school wall. The school lacked an identity and a place to be proud of for the students and the staff. The facilities within the school are fantastic but the warmth of the environment, although functional, had a cold, unfriendly and stark appearance.
All schools are important learning environments and they need to stimulate the children and give them a sense of belonging, particularly within the special needs criteria. Pylon Design were asked to develop a brand that gave them a presence but was also sympathetic to the needs of the students. The success of the Class Door Signs resulted in Priory School wanting to carry on the theme to the Fire Assembly Points within the car park. The signs needed to be large enough to be seen by everyone, be weather resistance, follow the corporate brand and be positioned logically to allow the students to line up comfortably within their Class designated area.
Pylon Design suggested using the same design and manufacturing process to replicate the success of the Class Door Signs. Recognition for the students in terms of colour, name and illustration were of prime importance and Pylon Design utilised familiarity to help the students find their location, when faced with this potential hazard. The signs were positioned in order around the car park, all teal colours together etc and fitted at a height that can be seen by all regardless of the height of the children. Two further signs were added incorporating the Priory School logo for the staff and visitors and positioned accordingly. Printed onto a 3mm aluminium composite material and fixed from the reverse to the wired fence, these new Fire Assembly Point signs give a consistent yet vibrant solution that also has a strong recognition for the students.