In countries recovering from war, the institution of the school is both critical to the rebuilding of civic culture and to embedding education as a seed of social and economic wellbeing. Rwanda’s 2006 Nine-year Basic Education Programme eliminated school fees and expanded access, investing in the present and future of the country. However, there aren’t enough school buildings to support the program’s success, so Boston’s not-for-profit organisation MASS Design Group was tasked to renovate and develop a school in the Musanze district of Rwanda. The classrooms are designed to take account of the sun, and the walls of the new buildings are constructed from bricks made locally, with ceilings of thatched reed providing good acoustics and ventilation throughout. School attendance has improved and the local techniques and materials used means this prototype can be replicated throughout the region.
Credit: MASS Design Group, Boston