The Berkersheimer Elementary School is the smallest of its kind in Frankfurt am Main. We are a “Europaschule” since 2010, and are continually involved in Comenius projects. In cooperation with partners from Finland, France, Spain, Poland, and Iceland, we are taking part in the two-year “Children Protecting our Planet” project since 2012. This program is financed by European Union funds. You can learn more about our activities by pressing the “Comenius” link. And you have the possibility to find the blog where all partners are presenting their activities.
History of the Berkersheim District
On the occasion of its 1200-year celebration in 1995, the history of Berkersheim and its school was extensively recorded. A brief summary:
Berkersheim was officially named as a locale by the Lorsch monastery's deed of donation in Niddagau on December 9, 795. At this time several freehold farmsteads coalesced in the area and were administrated by Niddagau's governing structure. Berkersheim belonged to the district “Grafschaft Bornheimer Berg”.
In the 14th century Kaiser Karl VI mortgaged this royal manor to the counts of Hanau. Towards the end of the 15th century the properties of Frankfurt's citizens in Berkersheim grew.
Since 1315 the royal family “Schelme von Bergen” occupied more and more property, until Johann Wilhelm Schelm von Bergen inherited additional land in 1639 and added Berkersheim to his residence. At the “Engelhardt” Farmstead, one can still see the allied crests of the Schelm von Bergen family and the barons of Berlepsch. Johann Wilhelm espoused the inception of the Lutheran church into Berkersheim.
From 1688 to 1694 the municipality recovered to some extent from the hardships, sacrifices, destruction, and war debts of the 30 Years' War. The creation of public works became conceivable once again. Thus a Lutheran school, along with a small chapel and rectory, was originated on the land where today the church stands. This was possible because of donations and the financial capacities of the Lutheran “Schelme” and counts. Naturally, the reformed school was to be constructed shortly afterward. It was located where the new school building stands today. At this time the reformed parish had a small church, built in 1450, at the location of the former Berkersheimer cemetery. This stood precisely on the land of our school today until it was closed in 1894. 13 to 15 children, of approximately 20 of the village families, attended each of these first schools. These two schools existed until 1818.
In 1886 Berkersheim, along with six other municipalities and the town of Bockenheim, were assigned to the Frankfurt County.
In 1910 Berkersheim became a district of the city Frankfurt. With this designation Berkersheim received gas and water supply. From 1915-1916 the present-day school was built. In 1916 the streetcar system reached Dachsberg. In 1925 it was expanded to reach a farther endpoint. The population of Berkersheim increased markedly after its incorporation into the city. The sewage system was constructed quite late indeed, between the years 1961 and 1966. Since then the district has continued to grow larger. In 1996 a few new housing projects came to Berkersheim and many German families moved into the former US housing estate, so Berkersheim gained many new fellow citizens.
In 1977 the school was expanded with the building of two new pavilion classrooms. These were replaced by container buildings in November 2000, supplemented by a care room and two administrative offices. Since the year 2005, the school consists of the former main building and a new building with four classrooms as well as the secretarial and principal's offices. The staff room was also used for afternoon care. Since autumn 2008 the afternoon care has been located at the former offices of the “Frankfurter Volksbank” at Wiesengarten 2.
Berkersheim is still the smallest and most rural district of Frankfurt. The agriculture economy has shifted toward husbandry and the accommodation/care of horses. Fresh eggs are still available, apple wine is pressed, and the tractor is part of the cityscape.
Berkersheim is surrounded by many fields of local recreation areas on the river “Nidda”. It invites to bicycle riding, so that the children grow up in the city, but enjoy the freedoms and possibilities of nature in their lives and education.
See also: Comenius - School day - Nutrition - Walk to School - Energy Detectives