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Montevideo, December 6th 2022 - 05:06 UTC



Punta del Este needs more schools to accommodate new residents

Wednesday, March 23rd 2022 - 09:04 UTC
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In the rest of Uruguay, schools are closing down due to a drop in birth rate, according to Public Education Administration In the rest of Uruguay, schools are closing down due to a drop in birth rate, according to Public Education Administration

The exclusive Uruguayan beach resort of Punta del Este is experiencing an increase in the development and establishment of schools, as migrating inflows of Argentines and also of people from other parts of the country to become permanent residents have put pressure on the demand.

In the Department of Maldonado, where Punta del Este is located, several private institutions have already begun the process of authorization, it was reported.

The National Public Education Administration (ANEP) also projects that as a result of the “significant” drop in births, Uruguayan schools will lose a quarter of their population by 2030. In the last two decades, the number of children attending primary school has dropped by 15%.

But due to the settlement of Argentine citizens and the eastward migration of Montevideans, Maldonado is going in the opposite direction. The Primary School Inspectorate of Maldonado has already begun the process of authorizing two new schools.

According to El País, four other institutions have also started inquiries to follow suit.

Private schools nationwide have shown a significant drop in enrollment, partly due to the demographic decline and also due to a shift towards public education. Two schools have been closed down and a third was saved at the last minute from the same fate, El País reported.

The new Maldonado schools must comply with certain teaching hours in Spanish, based on the official program, in order to be accredited. Otherwise, they would be listed as “authorized” and students would have to take a graduation test.

Despite sanitary restrictions to travel, 12,489 Argentines have applied for residency in Uruguay, which accounted for 84% of the total number of residency applications for the year 2021.

According to real estate sources, many of the Argentines who have school-age children settled on the south coast of Montevideo and in Maldonado. Most of them belong to a high socioeconomic class and prefer private schooling.

Given these migratory changes and the flow between private and public schools, education authorities are speeding up the use of the GURI computer system to provide the Administration with all the statistics on education in real-time, it was also reported.


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