One School Pathfinder Research on the Isle of Wight

Designing with users in mind

An offshoot of the Building Schools for the Future programme, the One School Pathfinder initiative gives local authorities the chance to completely redevelop one secondary or secondary special school in their area. Research with local communities is an important step in the development of this process.

Qualitative research with children and young people

Isle of Wight Council commissioned Qa to conduct research with children and young people which would inform the redevelopment of Cowes High School into a Learning Campus for all.

The brief was to:

“Find out what young people would like from a high school that is designed to be an inspiring, modern, world-class learning environment that will enable all young people to reach their full potential”

To meet this aim the focus groups explored:

  • what children and young people like/dislike about their current schools
  • their views on what makes a school bad/old-fashioned/uninspiring#
  • their views on what makes a school good/modern/inspiring
  • wider issues such as reputation and identity, social spaces, choice of uniform and out of school learning/activities for the whole family and wider community

As the research involved Year 3 to Year 7 pupils, fun interactive activities were used to stimulate discussion.

Guiding the design of the school

The consultation gave Isle of Wight Council key information detailing what is important to children and young people in a learning environment. This information will be used to take the planning of the One School Pathfinder project forward.

For more details e-mail becky.gulc@qaresearch.co.uk or call 01904 632039