The story of Pirita school

On 1 September 1948, Tallinn School No 36 opened its doors at 14 Metsavahi Road in Pirita, Tallinn. For the first year of study, the school housed 12 classes of grades 1-7 – altogether 132 students. Half of the students studied in Estonian, half in Russian. The first principal was Leonti Sepp.

During the following years, the number of students increased and between 1949 – 1950, a new school building was completed at 19 Metsavahi Road (currently used for elementary level, grades 1-4). From 1951 to 1955, the school was led by Taissia Kuprina, and from 1955 to 1959, Helmi Viikholm.

In 1961, an eighth grade class was opened for the first time and in 1962, a secondary level was opened. In 1962, the school building was expanded to accommodate classrooms for physics, chemistry and woodwork. The first secondary level students finished school in 1965. The principal in 1959-1963 was Ülo Randma.

During the 1970s, the school specialised in polytechnic studies, such as commerce and electronics. From 1963 to 1981, the school was led by Sirje Terask.

In 1981-1982, the schoolhouse was fully renovated and the interior spaces were redesigned. One of the most beautiful traditions of the school, senior prom, first took place in 1983. Starting from 1989, the school has offered teaching only in Estonian. The principal during 1981-1989 was Dagmar Arengu.

In 1992, Tallinn School No 36 was renamed Pirita Secondary School. The school started specialising in economics and in 1996 it was renamed Pirita Gymnasium of Economics (Pirita Majandusgümnaasium). In 1989-2009, the principal was Edith Asveit.

In 2002, the school was granted the quality award of “Õppimist väärtustav kool” (School valuing education) by Tallinn Education Department. In 2003, another expansion was built housing the gymnasium classrooms, the library and the sports hall. In 2004-2005 the two older buildings were renovated. On 24 January 2009, the new school flag was inaugurated. Since then, the school’s birthday is celebrated each year on January 24.

Since 2008, the school organises a biennial Conference of Economics. The economics studies offered by the school have become a holistic system. The school has participated in  a number of international projects such as Comenius, Model European Parliament and MULTI, and it organises many competitions for the students of Tallinn – Rising Star, Pirita Dance Show, Kokapoisid (a cooking competition for boys). Between 2009 and 2016, the principal was Rita Rumm.

Since autumn 2016, the principal of the school is Toomas Pikhof. In 2019/2020, the number of students is 895. There is frequent collaboration between the school and the local community of Pirita, and the school’s reputation has grown immensely.

In grades 1-9 a new curriculum of integrated economics studies is followed. At secondary level, students who specialise in economics study the basics of entrepreneurship and marketing, micro- and macroeconomics, accounting, taxation and creation of business plans.

In the multimedia and creative entrepreneurship field – a new field of study-  studies cover fields such as photography, film, animation and graphic design; students participate in communication and creativity training, develop their writing skills, and familiarise themselves with legislation.

On 26 January 2017 the fourth conference of economics, titled “Economics tomorrow and overmorrow – new choices, possibilities and looking forward”, took place. The event won the award for the best deed in education (“Haridustegu”) in Tallinn in January 2017.

On 9 November 2017 the school hosted its first media conference “Navigating media space – a responsibility or freedom?”.

Since 2017, the school hosts an opinion festival where students applying to join the student union debate about different school-related topics.

Since 2018, the school has its own money. The money is used during certain internal events, such as fairs and auctions.

In the spring of 2018, the school hosted a competition for young inventors called “100 inventions for Estonia”. In the autumn, the school organised the scientific conference “100 scientific moments for Estonia”.

The motto of our school is: “Education is freeing – grow your heart to wisdom!”

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