Our team at CSI have visited many school grounds throughout Australia for the past 3 decades we have been operating. It always amazes us to find schools with poor signage along the road as well as directional signage on their campus that fails to point prospective parents to the main office.
When we visit a school for the first time, we try to take notice like a first-time, prospective parent. The curb appeal of the campus and the signage is very important in creating a quality first impression. We try to ask the following questions:
- Is your school prominently advertised on the main road?
- What is communicated about the school through your current signage?
- Is your admin office easy to find for a prospective parent?
- Is your school taking advantage of its opportunities to create a quality first impression?
- What about your school signage and branding opportunities?
Take a look around. Ask a prospective parent what they see.
We focus on transforming schools through signage. The key areas we focus on to transform a school with our signage designs include:
- Branding – how we can increase your enrolments by creative signage to reflect your branding
- Boost morale – how we can use signage to boost your student & staff morale
- Wayfinding – how we can make wayfinding easier and more simpler around your campus
- Updates & Announcements – how we can use signage to communicate updates and announcements
- Safety – how we can use signage to facilitate a safe school
Your signage really can say a lot about your school. Whether it’s a nursery, secondary school, specialist college or a higher education establishment, the signage outside your premises not only proudly displays the name, motto and logo of your school, but speaks volumes about the ethos and principles which underpin everything you do. A well-made, well-maintained school sign shows that you take pride in the work you carry out as an educational establishment, and creates a positive and lasting impression on anyone who happens to visit or simply pass by the school gates.
By contrast, run-down or old-fashioned school signage can have a detrimental impact on the way the outside world views your school, because it hints at lower standards. Seeing poor school signage, local people might start to suspect those lower standards extend beyond external appearances to all other facets of school life, from the quality of the teaching down to the overall behaviour of the students. An attractive, polished façade to your premises, on the other hand, bodes well, creating a good first impression on all.
Research has also shown that children thrive academically in pleasant, attractive surroundings, and that extends beyond the classroom. People are always more inclined to look after the space around them when they can see it is worth looking after, so behaviour improves, students are keener to learn and everyone is happier. While they might not immediately spring to mind in this context, remember that your school signs are the first thing your students see in the morning and the last thing they see as they leave for home after the final bell.
Is it time for an upgrade?
There are all sorts of reasons for investing in new school signs. It could be that the school has a new head teacher or deputy head, whose name needs to be added to the signs, or perhaps it could be that contact details have changed, or even that the school is going in for a complete rebranding exercise and changing the logo and school motto. It could even be as simple as noticing that your old signs are looking a little tired or worse for wear, and a shiny new school sign is called for to brighten up the front of the building.
MAKE WAYFINDING EASIER
No matter how your school is laid out, good signage makes navigation a lot easier. Students and staff eventually learn their ways around the grounds and don’t need directions for forever. However, they are not the only people who need to navigate schools. Parents, guest lecturers, and other visitors will be glad to have visually distinct signage that doesn’t fade into the background.
COMMUNICATE UPDATES & ANNOUNCEMENTS
School administrators regularly need to communicate with hundreds or even thousands of students and staff members, but email and traditional school signage convey information inefficiently. Digital signage allows schools to share critical information in real-time so that students and staff know precisely what they need to, when they need to.
Examples of other announcements schools can use digital signage for include:
- Fundraising events
- Sporting events
- Building and traffic construction
- Examination dates
- Extracurricular activity schedules
- Student accomplishments and recognition
- Term & holiday dates
Every educational institution needs a comprehensive safety plan that helps people evacuate buildings as quickly and seamlessly as possible. Schools traditionally post evacuation plans on walls or paper bulletin boards, but students and staff may not have taken the time to memorize these plans and, therefore, put themselves in danger when emergencies arise.
Current signage for schools can integrate with alarm systems to notify building occupants about emergencies and direct them where to go. If the emergency requires people to stay inside, such as extreme weather, then digital signs can change to communicate lockdown protocols. Implementing a system that informs students and faculty what they should do during dangerous situations reduces confusion and saves lives.