January 27, 2021

Back to the rural classes of the sixties

Back to the rural classes of the sixties


Education and values ​​should never be lost, so a Cantabrian municipality has decided to restore its old schools and turn them into small museums to show how children learned in rural areas over half a century ago.

The City Council of Valderredible and the Neighborhood Board of Castrillo de Valdelomar have recovered the old and almost centenary school of this district, built in 1922 and closed in 1972, as Efe has observed.

Far from the laptops or the digital and tactile whiteboards that most schools enjoy today are wooden desks and benches, iron stoves, physical black and white maps, encyclopedias or sewing books. those who had these old schools.

The mayor of Valderredible, Fernando Fernández, emphasizes that this project aims to "dignify" rural education and also remember the figure of those vocational teachers who contributed so much to the development of the valley as Rosalía Revilla, who is the last teacher to teach in Castrillo.

Another of the objectives to which Fernández points is that it serves as an attraction to fight against rural depopulation, and to remember a series of values ​​that, in his opinion, are being lost, such as discipline, work, respect and effort.

It is in 1912 when compulsory schooling is introduced in Spain and child labor is prohibited, although attendance at these schools was seasonal, as the poster says at the entrance to the school in Castrillo.

This was one of the thirteen national primary schools that were built in Valderredible between 1923 and 1931, coinciding with the dictatorship of Miguel Primo de Rivera.

Like most of this time, the school of Castrillo is built in masonry and has three windows on its main façade, two on the front and one on the side.

In the first half of the thirties, with the restoration of the Republic, culture and education were taken to the rural world by the "Pedagogical Missions", which were helped by the cinema, a demountable theater and the books for this work.

In fact, it was the municipality of Valderrible, the first in rural Cantabria that met the cinema, in some sessions in which popular and classical music auditions were also offered, as well as readings of stories and poetry or talks about articles of the Constitution.

In the poster that reviews the history of the school of Castrillo de Valdelomar also refers to the black chapters that lived these centers with the Civil War, because they were killed two teachers of the municipality: Inocencio Campo, Allén del Hoyo, and later Abundio Peña, from Repudio.

And Rosalina Revilla, the last teacher of the school in Castrillo, is honored in those letters, who points out to Efe that the recovery of the school has been "fabulous" and she has been very excited, since she was there for nine years.

Rosalina remembers that it was a class of fifteen young people, rather older, because there were barely any births, and the only child among the students was her son.

In these classrooms they were prepared for their subsequent passage through the school and proudly explains that students who studied at that school have become administrative, medical or teachers.

"It is a recognition to his person and trajectory but can be extrapolated to all those teachers who dedicated their lives to the education and training of our citizens," said the mayor at the inauguration of the school's recovery works.

During 2019 the school can be visited with the company of a guide who will show both the interior and its surroundings, explained the mayor.

According to Fernández, the most complete school in the municipality is that of Castillo because of the existence of an ethnographic museum in which material that could be recovered and restored due to this initiative was saved.

"This area, which is the most depressed of Valderredible, is intended to become a museum of customs and traditions," says the mayor on an area where several churches converge religious art and cave paintings.

By Pablo G. Hermida

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