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Hermanos Aldama School Building to Undergo Renovations

Visita de autoridades

School’s parents’ association says they were blindsided by decision

By Jesús Aguado

Authorities have committed to restoring the building for San Miguel de Allende’s most populated elementary school, the historic Hermanos Aldama School, but the idea has raised the hackles of some parents who say they were not informed about the plan and are demanding transparency if the project happens. In a visit to area schools under construction, Mayor Luis Alberto Villarreal and Director of Guanajuato Institute of Educative Infrastructure also visited the Hermanos Aldama School, which is not currently under construction. The school’s principal gave them a tour, explaining how the deterioration the building has suffered in recent years could eventually represent a risk to pupil safety.

Several years ago, the school had 36 student groups, totaling more than 1,000 students. Little by little, the Guanajuato Secretariat of Education has been reducing the number of groups—one per year, though the school remains the city’s most used elementary school. The idea behind the gradual reduction of students by the state secretariat has been to someday recover the historic building, which some neighbors say should be turned into a cultural center.

Since the San Juan de Dios neighborhood elementary school—which uses a building dating back to the 1700s in addition to a newer building from 1970—is historic and cannot undergo a restoration project without the permission of the National Institute of Anthropology and History, authorities made the commitment to work on an executive project to restore the building.

The school was once the city’s first hospital, Hospital of San Rafael, from when San Miguel de Allende was still known as the Village of San Miguel El Grande.

The Hermanos Aldama School did not originally occupy the Hospital San Rafael building. It originally was located on calle San Francisco 23—which is currently the site of Casa de Europa in México. Over time, the number of students at the school began increasing, which eventually led to the school using the former Hospital of San Rafael building.

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In the 2018–2019 school year, which just ended, the school had 807 students. The building also serves as an afternoon school for the Cinco de Mayo elementary school.

 

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