Public secondary education in Chile was founded in 1813. The schools helped to educate the political elites of the Republic of Chile and constitute the Republic’s early educational network. Records of these schools show the historical memory of Chilean education and allows new approaches to academic research in this area.
School records are invaluable for research into pedagogical innovation, for civic education and for the reinforcement of the memory and identity of local communities in times of globalisation. These documents contain information that is fundamental for the revitalisation of the history of education in Chile, as these documents give in-depth information of the social and institutional history of the Chilean public educational system since its beginning. The project will digitise records from eight public schools, dating from 1827 and 1917.
The schools that own these records are not aware of their value. They do not have the resources necessary to maintain and preserve these documents, which are kept in basements in a state of disrepair. The documents from the 19th century are particularly endangered.
The project digitised 185 volumes of documents found in schools outside the capital, between the cities of Concepción and La Serena. The schools made a great effort to improve the storage and preservation of the documents. The project trained students, teachers and administrative staff in digitisation techniques. This raised awareness of the importance of archive management and digitised resources. The project was jointly supported by the Programa de Archivos Escolares (PAE).