School improvement ideas on a budget

BLOG 23 JAN 2023

PYS Madeley Science Wall Art

Looking for budget-friendly school improvement ideas?

These school improvement ideas are all aimed to help you maximise your budget and reimagine your existing space.

As an education design agency, with twenty years’ experience, we’ve worked with thousands of schools around the world. So we know from experience that when it comes to your budget, every penny counts.

Read on to find out how you can transform your learning environment without breaking the bank.

Phase it out

We wrote a blog recently about how you can phase your Wall Art projects to spread the cost and keep projects manageable.

The same principle can apply to any improvement project within your school.

The great thing about phasing your school improvement projects is that you’ll witness the transformation happening incrementally.

It also allows you to learn from each project – assess what worked best – so you can take your learnings into the next one. In this way, you’ll spread your cost across a longer timeframe and you’ll ensure you invest wisely.

Interested in Wall Art for your school? Email us at or call +44 (0) 20 7404 3400 to arrange a free consultation!

St John and St James welcome wall art

Invest in the future

It can be tempting to go with cheap and quick options for school improvement. But, what saves you money in the short-term could cost you more over time.

For example, many visual displays can become worn and dated after a short time and may need to be replaced regularly. This can end up costing a lot more than if you’d invested in a higher quality, longterm product upfront.

Upkeep can also cost money, so make sure you check out what maintenance is required on any products you invest in.

Any visual displays should be designed specifically for busy school environments, so they can withstand any wear and tear, spills and heavy footfall.

Take the stairs

Many schools don’t realise that their stairwells can support their school improvement goals in a cost effective way.

You may think, “but my stairwells are unsightly!“, “it’ll be a huge project” or “stairwells are purely functional“.

However, you can achieve some of your improvement goals on a single feature wall.

Stairwells are a high footfall area of your school, used multiple times every day. So, why not use them to inspire learning, improve wellbeing or stimulate curiosity?

Some schools use their stairwell walls to impart knowledge or show the breadth and balance of their curriculum. Others use them to to aid wellbeing, with images of nature, wildlife and immersive scenes.

You don’t need to cover every bare patch of wall space. Even one feature wall will do the trick…and keep costs down.

Find a way

Internal wayfinding signs can help direct pupils to the right place at the right time. They’re particularly helpful for pupils who have special needs or suffer from anxiety.

You may be weighing up whether to invest your budget in learning based visual displays or wayfinding signs. The good news is that you can have both, as part of a single project!

If your school improvement goal is to inspire learning in a few different subject areas, you can incorporate signage and directional arrows within one design.

For example, many schools opt to include directional arrows within their Wall Art timelines, to encourage the flow of traffic along the corridor.

You can also colour code areas or incorporate department names within the designs for each subject. So pupils will head to the correct classrooms, with the right mindset for learning.

Look outside your budget

There are many funding options outside your school improvement budget.

In fact, we’ve compiled a whole page dedicated to grants and funding available for various school improvement projects.

You can see these on our Resources Page.

Many schools have successfully secured funding for their improvement projects through crowd-funding, events and initatives like hiring out their halls or playing fields.

Teachers continue to fund innovative ways to fund their projects and we’re always happy to support schools in assessing what funding options might be available to them.

Get in touch

Feel free to contact us for a free of charge, no obligation conversation to get started.

We can advise on how to get started and show you examples of other projects for inspiration. Our design team creates every project bespoke to the school’s requirements.

We design everything in-house and our service includes print and installation in the quoted cost. Visit the case studies section of our website to see some of our work in action!




School Improvement


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Did you know that you don’t need a school library to get pupils reading? In fact, many schools we work with use other areas of their buildings to create inspiring reading spaces.

Get a free on-site consultation

We’ll visit your school to understand your goals, explain our process and provide you with a no-obligation quote.

Or call 020 7404 3400



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