Could you please explain what does the following expression mean:

school annex

I saw a building with this title on the front. However, I cannot figure out what it is exactly, and how does it differ from just "school"?

closed as off-topic by JEL, Jim, choster, Drew, user140086 Feb 9 '16 at 4:47

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  • annex: A building joined to or associated with a main building, providing additional space or accommodations. [ODO] – choster Feb 9 '16 at 2:39

In the US the term most often refers to a structure that is separate from the regular "primary" ("elementary") or "secondary" ("high school") school building, having been built because there was not enough space in the main building to accommodate all the students. Typically the construction is somewhat less grand than the main building, and, eg, heating and air conditioning is via window units vs the central heating/cooling plant of the main building. But it can vary a lot from one school to the next.

The term might also be used, however, simply to refer to a shop building or a heating/cooling building or some such. The terminology is not "official" and can vary from district to district.

(I'll add that it's not unusual for the "annex" to be composed of "modular buildings" (ie, trailers), installed "temporarily". Though of course it happens that such a "temporary" structure may be in place for decades.)

But note that the meaning of the term for a college or university building would be an entirely separate matter.


The term "school annex" usually describes something that has been annexed or added to a school district. For example, if a school is overcrowded, the district might move a small building onto the grounds, assign some students to it and call it an annex.

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