Covered Dining Area Ideas for Schools
Providing ample space for students to dine can be a headache if your facilities are limited. The total area of space that each pupil is legally required to have for dining is 0.9m2 per ‘cover’, or dining place. With student numbers on the rise, many schools are quickly running out of space for everyone to eat.
Keep reading to learn more about our dining solutions and how you can further enhance them.
What Are Covered Dining Areas for Schools?
The term covered dining area relates to an outdoor canopy that pupils can use for eating and drinking without exposure to the weather.
Our dining canopies for schools are sturdy aluminium structures that are weather resistant, safety assured, and anti-corrosion to offer a long-term solution. Within these spaces, you can install different types of benches and seating to ensure pupils have a comfortable place to spend their break times. You should also ensure they allow access to bins for waste disposal and WC facilities.
Ideas To Enhance Covered Dining Canopies
As you can see from our case studies, dining canopies come in all shapes and sizes. The benefit of our product is that you can create completely bespoke and unique installations that suit individual site needs perfectly.
There are lots of additional features you can add to make your covered dining canopy even better:
Add side walls and doors
You can use either glass or polycarbonate side walls to provide weather protection and extra warmth in the colder months. This gives the outdoor dining space more of an extension feel and ensures that pupils are comfortable and sheltered, no matter where they are dining.
Use retractable blinds
These blinds have clear vision panels and allow protection from the outside elements. Blinds are more flexible than side walls as they can be raised as needed to allow students to enjoy good weather.
Incorporate some form of Lighting
Adding LED lighting to the rafters helps to keep light levels in the canopy good through the winter. It also improves safety.
Add a heating source
Incorporating heaters to the canopy (especially if it also has side walls) makes it a lot more comfortable during the winter months.
Add school branding
Showcasing the school’s branding on or inside the canopy is a great way to match the canopy with the rest of the building.
Add an outdoor servery or catering pod to provide food for students
This will reduce pressure on indoor catering facilities and also add another functionality to the space.
What Are The Benefits Of An Outdoor School Canopy?
While the main reason that schools tend to choose an outdoor dining canopy is due to lack of indoor dining space, there are many other benefits. Firstly, having an outdoor option encourages pupils to get more fresh air, which is brilliant for concentration and overall well-being. The outdoor element is also great for socialising as it encourages students to mix and mingle.
You may also want to split students based on year group. If this is how you manage lunchtimes, having an extra area is brilliant, as you can send a whole group to that location.
School dining canopies are much more cost-effective than building an extension onto your school. They are also constructed with minimal interruption and allow a speedy solution to a lack of space and seating.
Are you now ready to install an outdoor dining canopy with a difference? Get in touch to learn more!