The Building and the needs of the school

There is a need to improve building infrastructure to provide a better teaching and learning environment.
The Taj Ganj Welcome School needs to be physically bigger to cater for primary education, for between 70 – 100 children.

Discussions between Peter Lockyer, Salim and Naim in April 2012 concluded that the school could eventually compromise two enclosed floors with the flat masonry rooftop shaded and caged as a creative learning/recreational space. This scenario would increase the teaching area from 40m2 to 190m2.

The future building in stages.
Extend the current flat roof over the whole of the ground floor, with internal stairs built;
Construct a ‘tropical roof’ of the corrugated iron over the whole of the rooftop, with a monkey-proof cage around, to allow the school to have use of the top floor. Construct a second story, then shift the monkey cage onto the new rooftop.

An estimate of $25,000 AUD could provide this two story addition, with a proper roof shading structure (a tropical roof) with a monkey-proof cage. The roof-top could be an ideal environment for recreation, growing plants and other educational opportunities that can enrich current learning practices.

Stage 1.
At these discussions in April 2012, it became clear that the current class area with a corrugated asbestos cement roof with 1.5 ceiling fans was hot, and it was still two months until July, when daily temperatures sit in the low 40 degrees Celsius! This is not a positive learning space.

It was agreed that with two weeks holiday approaching (1st week in May) that an opportunity existed to pursue the stage one additional works. Specifically this is to.
Extend the current flat roof (concrete) to cover the teaching area completely;
Construct a stair upstairs and add an extra toilet downstairs (a western- type for staff/adults/visitors) and an extra squat toilet plus hand-basin upstairs

A building contractor was consulted, materials and labour costs estimated.
Materials would cost $2,600AUD, and Labour would cost $2,800AUD. The total cost $5,400AUD.

We had $3,300AUD in the building account at the time. An English supporter was about to transfer 300 Euros ($500AUD approx). We could find the balance, with a fund raiser planned in Geelong for June 23rd 2012.
It was further agreed that ceiling fans should be fitted, with proper wiring.

Stage 2.
This should proceed as soon as viable. This needs to be priced (estimated at $2,000AUD) and funds secured. This could happen in 2012.

At this point of Stage 1 and Stage 2 completed, the school would have almost five times more area to use for teaching than prior to May 2012.

Stage 3 could wait for a few years. Upgrading the teacher training and school teaching resources would seem a higher priority.

“The process of planning for the school’s development has illustrated just how far the Australian dollar, the New Zealand dollar, or the Euro can go in India. This is a very effective project in delivering some tangible education opportunities in an impoverished area of the world, such as Teli Pera in Agra, India” Peter Lockyer May 2012