Queensland Chapter Networking Breakfast

Published: Tuesday 24 June 2014

The early start was no deterrent for the Queensland Chapter members who attended the Chapter Networking Breakfast on 24 June 2014. Before hearing CEFPI Qld committee member and Fulton Trotter Architect Andrew Armstrong discuss the Green School in Bali, members enjoyed the opportunity to converse informally over an excellent breakfast.

Earlier this year Andrew led a group of 20 students from Griffith University on the tour which forms part of the University's Master of Architecture annual international field trip to explore sustainable learning environments. The Green School was awarded the Greenest School in the World by the Green Building Council of America after considering over 100 schools world-wide.

Chapter members were captivated as Andrew explained the nature of the buildings that formed the school which operates on a Steiner/Waldorf model, educating over 300 K-12 students, representing some 40 countries. The use of bamboo as the building material is almost exclusive, but is also used to make furniture and fittings within classrooms. Andrew explained that the bamboo is treated with boron (salt) to address termite and similar threats.

Extensive use of natural light from skylights and no exterior walls create a unique learning environment within classrooms of some 200 square metres each. The school is highly self sufficient with its own solar power generation, rice paddies and live stock.

Of particular interest was a mud pond where students participated in recreational mud wrestling. Andrew noted that the school experiences a very low absentee rate and is well supported by its parents and friends.