1939-1960: Crossing the dessert

The School began to readjust to the new era. José, trapped by the war, returned at last, along with other mobilised teachers. On 29 September 1940 Luis González Fernández started working at the School teaching History and Literature, and was a model of punctuality, seriousness and decency. Sixty years later he was still coming in every day. 
The post-war years were very tough, characterised by little freedom and much hardship. Shortages caused all the prices to increase. Fees increased from 45 pesetas to 150 in 1947. Boarding cost between 1,750 and 2,500 pesetas per term. However, a not insignificant number of students paid less…or nothing. 
José attempted to re-launch MENDRUGO. It was subject to censorship: photographs and praise of Franco were to appear on the front page. Thus it was written in code – intelligent people would know how to read between the lines. It was, of course, approved.
Life at the School went on, with great difficulty. The 1947 School brochure detailed the results of the State Exam since 1939: 226 out of 253 of the School students had passed and it had received 23 Special Prizes out of the 59 given out in the District. There were 26 on the teaching staff. 
Luis, a founding member of the Concerts Society, encouraged musical activities and José, theatrical ones. These were held in the School itself, in the Juan de la Cueva and Álvarez Quintero theatres. 
Official Books of Accounts were kept from 1942. At that time the staff consisted of: Leandro Díaz de Urmeneta and Julio Mínguez García, Mathematics; Anuario Mendoza Rapela, Latin and Greek; Antonia Brzezicki, French; Elías Ferrer, Arts and Crafts and José Montllor Vivó, House Master. March 1944 saw the arrival of José López Navarro, or Pepe the caretaker. He was followed by Feliciano de la Osa, Manuel Pérez-Cerezal, Francisco Cruces… 
Of the nine non-teaching staff that signed a document relating to compensation for food (October 1948), five used their thumbprint. A fine indication of the situation in Spain during the forties! The School, and its students, has had the great fortune to work alongside the many wonderful people that have made up the non-teaching staff over the years. 
In 1953 the Regulatory Law on Secondary Teaching was published. The Baccalaureate was reduced to two grades, elementary and upper, which lasted four and two years respectively. Two degree or Validation exams were established. The maximum number in each class or department was to be… fifty students. 
Luis Rey Romero graduated as a teacher in 1958-59.

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