The History of the Schools

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The History of the Schools
Once Silesia had passed under the rule of Prussia in 1742, in Świeradów too school attendance became compulsory. As was recorded by Hannes Scholdan in a chronicle of Świeradów in the very same year, it received a “royal concession for a house of prayer and school”. Lessons had certainly taken place in Silesia before this, but did so only in late autumn and winter, since children were required in other seasons to help with the housework. Of the first teacher in Świeradów in Prussian times it is known that he was giving lessons to children even before 1742. The first school came into being on the ground floor of the house of the organist, next to the Protestant church consecrated in 1780. It had a single class. The teacher lived on the first floor, and was the organist as well as the director of the choir. The school was also attended by children from what are today Podgórna and Siemkowice. Like the church, the house of the organist no longer exists.

Children from the 'spa district', today the centre, as well as Kamieniec, attended a single-class school to be found on what is now Ratowników Górskich Street. The building stands to this day not far from where the 'Świeradówka' flows into the Kwisa, and the classroom was located in the right hand part. For children from what are now Górna and Drożyna another single-class school was established on the current Kościuszki Street (by Malachit Mountain Hotel), c. 100 m above the bridge over the Kwisa. This building has also survived to the present day.

When construction began of a six-class school on Górska Street in 1913, the first two schools were closed, with the rooms from this time on serving organist and teacher as apartments, while the school on Kościuszki Street continued to operate, being closed only at the beginning of the 1940s. At Izerska Meadow, a high district of Świeradów-Zdrój on the Izera River, there was a teacher giving lessons to children in his home as early as 1746. The school built at a later date had a tower with a small bell, and also served the residents of Izerska Meadow as a chapel of prayer. In 1935 the General Association of Schools in Świeradów-Zdrój, to which all of the Protestant schools belonged, constructed at Izerska Meadow a new, modernly equipped school with an apartment for a teacher, not far from the eastern edge of the forest. It was built in the style of a Silesian peasant cottage and exists still, sole survivor of 44 buildings which once stood there.

The residents of Świeradów-Zdrój were predominantly Protestant, as were the schools mentioned above. Before the turn of the century, however, a school was established in Świeradów for those of the Catholic faith in the service of the Schaffgotsch family. A classroom was set up on the ground floor of the forestry house, by the Leopold von Schaffgotsch Bath House, with this building also standing through to the present day. For some time there were also post-primary schools in Świeradów-Zdrój. Before the First World War a private post-primary school was established comparable to a vocational school. It occupied rooms on a floor of the school on Górska Street and continued until a secondary school was established in Mirsk / Friedeberg. The schoolchildren of Świeradów travelled to school every day by train, and in summer also by bicycle. Another private post-primary school was located initially in what is today Turoń Health Spa Retreat, and later in a building on Górska Street (opposite the block above a shop), and here also foreign languages were taught, specifically Latin, French and English. At this school, however, the education received could not be documented, by means of a final diploma for instance.

Text: Ilse Renner-Lehmann