Classroom, learning environment, demolition derby.
The public sees it as a classroom. Educators see it as a learning environment. But, from the furniture’s perspective, it’s something quite else, again. Durable school furniture is a must. It has to stand up to the wear and tear of daily use. Sometimes gentle, sometimes respectful, but often not. In our more than 100 years of manufacturing products for schools, we’ve learned that it’s impossible to over-build anything for a classroom – and that no school ever wished it had chosen less durable furniture over more durable.
Durable classroom furniture doesn’t come with a compromise.
We have a concept at Smith System called “future-proof”. It means that the furniture is designed to support a wide variety of classroom settings and individual and small group work. Of course, we have to future-proof our furniture because it lasts so long – it’s our effort to assure its potential functionality is as great as its longevity.
More specifically, our various categories of furniture all have characteristics that give them added durability. All of our seating lines undergo internal BIFMA compliance testing which simulates years of ordinary classroom use. But, because a classroom chair faces a lot more than the stress of a student sitting down and getting up 100,000 or so times in its service life, we conduct our own tests which are perhaps a bit more, shall we say, medieval. The result is durable furniture, from the top of the seat back, to the “outside hold” glides at the end of the legs – legendary on Smith System chairs for their ability to hold on tight.
Classroom furniture does what it’s supposed to do, and stands up to what students are not supposed to do.
Students aren’t supposed to sit on tables. But the older they get, the more apt they are to do just that. The best recourse is steel. Either built into the frame of the table, as in our Planner™ line, or reinforcing the length of the table in select sizes of our other lines.
To further protect the school’s investment, Smith System desks and tables add durability through high-pressure laminates designed to stand up to both use and abuse, and several choices of edge band moldings, offering a spectrum of protection (and color accent).
But, what makes Smith System products durable classroom furniture may come from something more intuitive and less physical – the experienced eyes of educational furniture manufacturers. These eyes know that if students see or perceive a weak point in a piece of furniture, over time the students will attack the weak spot relentlessly until it fails. Durable classroom furniture presents no such targets.