The 1st Primary school in Chalandri was founded in 1880 and operated as a One -class elementary school for males, according to the then existing educational system. In 1885 a ministerial decision was issued establishing a Primary school for females, which was later revoked due to lack of financial resources by the Municipality of Athens. The females’ Primary school was finally established in 1890.
The school was originally housed in several buildings in the streets Cholargou (today known as Soph. Venizelou) and Pheidiou (today known as Karaoli&Dimitriou) until the 1892. Later some other buildings were used in the area between the streets (today known as Vas.Konstantinou) and Agias Paraskevis.
More specically, at the beginning buildings that belonged to Gkikakis and then to Trikaliotis were used, later on to Vrettos and finally to Kourasis.
Between the first ten years of the 20th century the 1st Primary School was housed in two properties ( males and females respectively ) which belonged to Dionysios Kavalis and was located on Athens Street (a little before the crossroad of Papanikoli – Paleologou Street)
At that time the school worked as a four-class school that means four years of primary school. The students continued the education in Elementary school, which was three years and it was also compulsory. The nearest Elementary school was located in Maroussi and therefore, many children dropped out of school because of the distance. Later, those students who wished to continue their studies were attending the High School, which was four years.
The first teachers of the primary school were Louzis and Eleni Kapsala. Soon Evrigenis, Mandravilas, Theofilis and Lampiris followed.
The old stone building that still houses the 1st Primary School of a was built in 1920 during the time Georgios Papandreou was a Minister of Education in the government of Eleftherios Venizelos. The structure of the educational system changed in 1929 and the six-class primary school was established, as well as the six-class high school.
During the second World War the school building was ordered by the Germans. More specifically, with the invasion of the German Army in April 1941 the operation of the school was suspended and later on the building was ordered by an Austrian unit of the German Army and was used as a barrack. In the autumn of 1943 the Austrian unit was sent to the Russian front and therefore the students returned to the school only for six months, since the school was ordered again by a German unit. In 1944 with the liberation of Greece the Germans left leaving behind equipment that was later on used by the resistance group of Chlanadri. Since the October 1944 the school operated regularly in the school building.
The period of German-Italian occupation is one of the darkest periods of our modern history. In addition to the hardships that our people suffered from the conquerors, hunger and famine, the young students of the time were trying to get an education through many difficulties. Because the school building had been occupied by the occupation troops, the primary school classes were scattered and the children studied in the winter in various houses and cafes and the rest of the school year in the fields next to the school, the area called “Pefka” – in the square which was defined by the current streets of Olympionikon, Aristophanous, Solonos and Sof. Venizelou
Foulaki and Liza were two of the teachers of the occupation and most of the teachers were generals of the Greek army, like Karambelas and Kyttaris which remained a teacher after the occupation.
Another important historical moment for our school was the period of the “December Events”. During that time our school was a battle field between the parties in conflict. More specifically, in December 1944 members of ELAS (Greek People’s Libetation Army) attacked the police station in the area and then run armed to find refuge in the building of the 1st Primary School. Despite all the efforts of the security forces, for fifteen days, it was impossible to occupy the building. The building was later freed by a unit of the English army that was accompanied by two caterpillar vehicles.
After these events, the school operation came back to normal. After war teachers were Emmanouil Troulinos, school principal, Simeon Vassiliadis, Thanasis Papapanagiotou and Kyttaris, During th e years 1943-1950 it was common to give students a breadline (mess). Using a wooden shed to cook the students holding their cup used to stand in the queue to get some milk, raisin bread and fish oil, since children back then suffered from vitamin deficiency, adenopathy and other diseases of the time. Moreover, clothes were quite often given to them.
A very characteristic habit of the students back then was at the end of every school year, after the exams period to throw their inkwells on the marble slab of the school building.
A popular figure of the school was the school janitor, Mrs Maria, who took care of everything in the school building.
After the war, the 1st Highschool was also housed in the same building with the primary school. For a period of time all the highschool classes were housed there. Because of the growing number of primary students, there was not enough room for any other students. In 1954 the 1st Highschool finally has its own building, which remains the same until today. Within the decade a new building is added to meet the new needs.
In recent history the 1st Primary school of Chalandri also hosted TEE (Technical School)) for a couple of decades, which left after the earthquake of 1999.
The historic building of the 1st Primary School is maintained and has been renovated in an effort to meet the contemporary educational needs of our children. Today in our school the students experience an environment that promotes public education, bears connections with the past and builts on the new educational process for the future.
The Principal of the school in cooperation with the Parent Association has fought and keeps fighting to keep the high standards of the school, with respect to its history.
Our school history is mainly based of live sources…..our graduate memories, who we deeply thank for their valuable help in collecting memories and photographic material.