Design Competition for Modern School Infrastructure

Modern School Infrastructure Design Competition

The Competition

The objective of the competition is to identify suitable concepts for modern school infrastructure in Barbados which capture the key factors for Education Transformation, Climate Resilience and Sustainable Infrastructure.

Rules and Guidelines

The competition is open to all Architects Registered to practice in Barbados. Group or Individuals may submit entries. Where there is a group submission it must be led by an Architect registered to practice in Barbados, except for committee members/Assessors of their immediate family.

Participants may make submissions for Nursery, Primary or Secondary and Special Needs school, or for all four types. All work must be original and created by the Designer. Copies of other work utilised for the specific purpose of the design may not be reproduced without the written permission from the designer, and the designer must agree to the waving of all royalties. The Government of Barbados will not be responsible for any copyright infringement that may occur because of any unauthorised submission.

 All entries become the exclusive property of the Government of Barbados and will be retained for the purpose of exhibition with due credit to the Designers.

Each must comprise a maximum of Five A1 Sheets (841mmx 594mm”) (23.39”x33.11”) on robust paper of card, inclusive of:

  •  One Landscape Site Plan (ground floor),
  •  One ground floor plan
  •  Two longitudinal sections
  •  Three-dimensional presentation
  •  All other drawings/sketches necessary to convey the submission.

 A completed registration form must accompany each entry, and each piece of the submission must have the leader of the entry/ registration number affixed.

No name, motif or distinguishing mark may appear on the submissions.

 All entries should be submitted no later than: 4:00 PM on 10 May 2024 to:

Educational Transformational Design Competition

The Permanent Secretary

Ministry of Education, Technological and Vocational Training

Elsie Payne Complex

Constitution Road



All queries and requests for clarification should be submitted by 22nd March 2024 to the above address.

Click the below link to download/view the Design Competition's detailed Rules and Guidelines:




1. Could you provide more detail on how the competition prioritizes sustainability measures? Are there specific sustainable technologies or practices that the judging panel is hoping to see integrated into the designs, such as passive cooling, solar energy utilization, or green roofing?

The designer is being asked to use their initiative to incorporate measures that can support sustainable infrastructure. These measures include but are not limited to ventilation, passive cooling, energy efficiency such as solar/wind energy utilisation, water conservation, climate resilience and disaster preparedness.

2. Community Engagement: In what ways do the competition guidelines envision the school's interaction with the local community? Are there particular aspects of design that should facilitate community access and involvement outside school hours?

The notion of the school as a community space is envisioned. The layout should also consider the community engagement in the general upkeep of the school.

3. How important is the adaptability of educational spaces in the competition criteria, especially in response to evolving pedagogical approaches and potential shifts in educational needs over the next few decades?

Adaptability of educational spaces is extremely important to support flexibility and reorganisation of formal learning spaces, and education transformation requirements such as project-based learning and play-based learning.

4. Could the organizers elaborate on the extent to which designs should reflect and celebrate Barbadian culture and heritage? Are there specific cultural elements or materials that are encouraged in the submission guidelines?

The designer is being asked to use their initiative to reflect Barbadian heritage and culture to the extent possible.

5. What is the competition’s stance on innovative learning environments, particularly outdoor classrooms and spaces that promote non-traditional teaching methods and learning through play, especially for younger age groups?

It is the intention of the Ministry of the Education, Technological and Vocational Training as part of Education Transformation to ensure the creation of innovative and modern school infrastructure to support new approaches to teaching and learning which include play-based and project-based learning.

6. How critical is the integration of technology into the architectural design, and could you provide examples of the types of technological innovations the competition is seeking, particularly in support of STEM education?

It is very critical for designs to incorporate technology not only in support of STEM but also a meaningful way for new and emerging technologies to support the delivery of the curriculum and student learning.

7. Given Barbados' climate, how heavily will designs be judged on their resilience to natural disasters such as hurricanes and flooding? Are there preferred strategies for enhancing building resilience that entrants should consider?

All designs should reflect consideration of national building standards.

8. Could the organizers specify any targets or benchmarks for energy efficiency and carbon footprint reduction that designs should aim to meet, in line with Barbados' national goals for sustainable development?

The intention is to reduce the high energy consumption of fossil fuels by schools and to the extent possible introduce RE/EE measures to reduce energy consumption and cost and promote carbon footprint reduction.

9. With water conservation being a critical issue in Barbados, how should designs address water use efficiency, and are there innovative water management solutions that the competition values, such as rainwater harvesting or grey water recycling systems?

Please refer to the Modern School Infrastructure Design Competition Brief and the PowerPoint presentation on “Reimagining Education in Barbados”.

10. Can you provide more guidance on the specific design considerations and facilities that should be included to accommodate students with special education needs, ensuring inclusivity and accessibility in all learning environments?

Children with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) must have access to inclusive, quality education. Therefore, accessibility is key to ensure that students with special education needs and disabilities are not disadvantaged. Please refer to pages 15-16 of the Modern School Infrastructure Design Competition Brief.

11. Pg 5 says robust paper of card. Is the medium you are requiring to be robust paper OR card? Are any other options possible?

At a minimum, submission of design concepts must be in hardcopy format on robust card as indicated in the Modern School Infrastructure Design Competition Brief.

12. Page 18 The submission is to be a 5-card presentation delivered in hard copy to METVT, plus submitted via email? Both addresses have been provided. Please clarify. If email, please advise what format? Pdf?

Design concepts must be submitted in hardcopy on robust card as indicated in the Modern School Infrastructure Design Competition Brief. The hardcopy must be submitted to the location below:

Modern School Infrastructure Design Competition

The Permanent Secretary

Ministry of Education, Technological and Vocational Training

‘Elsie Payne Complex’

Constitution Road

St. Michael



A pdf copy of the submission can be emailed to the email address above.

13. Page 18 Please clarify the last paragraph in its entirety. It says each piece of the submission is to have leader of the entry or registration affixed, yet it also says no name is to be on the submission.


The name of the leader and registration must be included on the registration form as specified in the Design Brief. The registration number referred to is the National Identification Number and this number should be affixed to each piece of the submission.


14. Please clarify how you would like the registration form to accompany the submission. In separate envelope? On each of the 5 pieces of card? Please clarify. Document says “enclosed”.

The registration form should be placed in a separate envelope and included in the package for submission.

15. Is advanced registration for the competition required? If so, please advise how this is done?


There is no advanced registration for the competition.


16. The time constraints of the competition deadlines will prohibit realistically resolving the design to the level of detail as described in the competition brief. Would drawing submissions that do not include the level of specific detail outlined in the brief be considered?


All submissions will be evaluated.


17. Due to the time constraints, will an accommodation schedule be issued that lists recommended minimum room sizes for each room type noted in the competition brief?


The space requirement for the entire school facility is provided in the competition brief.


18. Please confirm if the site grade should be considered as flat?