A comprehensive school built in the 1960s has been replaced with a £18 million building.
Kings Langley School is now a three storey building designed to let in natural light and provide a peaceful learning environment.
Colours proven to have a calming effect were used as the theme for the school’s interior design.
Gary Lewis, who has been head teacher at the school for 14 years, said: “I think some of the staff expected the new building to feel quite clinical and cold, but when we arrived they said it feels like Kings Langley School.”
“Despite the contractors having fairly fixed ideas as to what the new building will look like, we had an input and a say in the design. The pattern of Kings Langley School will be replicated throughout schools in Luton, Hatfield and Reading.
“We are so pleased with the new building. I am blown away with how well the students have dealt with the move.
“If kids are shown they are cared for and respected it makes a huge difference.”
The school, which teaches 1,100 pupils from year 7 to 13, is 36 per cent bigger than its predecessor, yet has a 25 per cent smaller carbon footprint.
The original school was only intended to be in use for around 20 years.
But as a result of a lack of funding, the building was in use for almost double that time.
In a 2010 Ofsted report, the school would have been rated as outstanding but was let down by the ‘poor state of repair and the quality of the current buildings’.
Students and teachers made do with classrooms that were labelled as temporary when they first set up around 25 years ago.
The new school has been fitted with sensory lights, sky light windows throughout the building for natural light and there are lifts for disabled people.
The sports hall has doubled in size, there are performing arts studios, state of the art science labs and photography studios.
The design for the school will be replicated throughout other schools in the area that are due for refurbishment.
According to Mr Lewis, the Department of Education were shocked when the school refused to install CCTV cameras inside the building.
He said: “We trust the kids, we don’t need a ‘big brother’ CCTV system inside the school.”
Mr Lewis added: “The difference between being good and outstanding is about detail so we focused on everything.”
The building works were paid for by the Department of Education.