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230 years of the foundation of Guatemala City

Neighborhood Ciudad Vieja, zone 10

Educational institutions: Official Coed School “República de Francia

Providing education since 1956.

Guatemala City, November 2006/ The Official School “República de Francia” (Republic of France) started its educational activities as an annex of School “Ismael Cerna” in the year 1956; in a rented house owned by Mr. Augusto Arriola, located in 33 avenida “A” 27-52, zone 5 and for which they gave a monthly payment of Q150.00.


Immediately after, on July 23, 1956, they started the formalities to obtain a building of their own. During this search, they walked into the French citizen Roberto Seidner Bloch, who after several visits to the school said: “If you obtain a lot I will build the school…” That is how the negotiations started in order to obtain the municipal land that sheltered a public tank located in 2ª avenida 7-69, zone 10.


However, they found an obstacle, and it was that the land could not be donated to a foreigner. This is why, Mr. Seidner thought about the Alianza Francesa, an institution who did have a legal status. The idea was to find the adequate land and built in front of it the “Plazuela Francesa” (French Square), desire that was not accomplished due to the lack of time.

This is how; on March 25, 1965 they requested the acquisition of the mentioned land to the Guatemalan Municipality, in order to build a school, with the intervention of the legal status of the Alianza Francesa and the French settlement.

The Municipal’s Council dictum was unanimously favorable and was transcribed in the Minute number 68, corresponding to the meeting celebrated on July 8, 1965.


As a product of this action, Mr. Seidner donated Q40,000.00 to finance the construction of the school building and Engineer René Schlesinger Alegría committed to the direction of the same, free of charge, arguing that “if a foreigner could donate a complete job, such as a school, for the benefit of its people, he would be ashamed not to cooperate in some way, and therefore, the least he could do was not to charge for his work”.

The job was finished on July 25, 1967, and Mr. Seidner Bloch received the keys of the building. He presented them to its Excellency, President Julio César Méndez Montenegro, who at the same time gave them to the Minister of Education, Dr. Carlos Martínez Durán, and from him, Principal Clara Susana Cóbar de Marroquín received them. The formal beginning of classes, with furniture and the student body, was on August 3, 1967.

The first Principal was Teacher Gladis Elena Aldana de Ardón; then came Teacher Clara Susana Cóbar Guerrero de Marroquín and, to this day it is directed by Teacher Laura Gordillo de Juárez. Annually, there is an approximate number of 210 students who attend this school, with an average of 35 children per class, who come from the surroundings of zone 10, Santa Catarina Pinula and Puerta Parada.


Beloved Neighborhood Program
Dr. Frieda Liliana Morales Barco
Lecturas: 2112