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Almost a century of history! 1925-2025

The “Elisa Lari” nursery school was founded and inaugurated in July 1925 by the parish priest of Villa Ospizio, with the enthusiastic participation of the population who felt it was "theirs" from the beginning. It was called the “Piccola Opera” of the Hospice.

Deeply rooted in the social fabric of the neighborhood and in the hearts of the people, the "Elisa Lari" nursery school located in via Emilia Ospizio 63, marks and expresses a tradition of solidarity , consensus , appreciation and support that has grown over time until to date.

In the post-war years, the tumultuous and chaotic growth of the population, the intensive construction of large buildings, true human hives, the conspicuous presence of non-EU immigrants, their diversity of culture, religion, customs, their very poverty, the extra-family employment of women have made the educational task of the family more difficult and increased the parents' expectations towards school.


Thus in 1965, on the occasion of the fortieth anniversary celebration, on the initiative of the parish priest and with the participation of the entire parish community, the nursery school was completely renovated and expanded, adapting it to the new needs. It was then decided to dedicate it to Elisa Lari, who was the first President, tireless collaborator of the parish priest Don P. Carretti; since then the “Piccola Opera” took the name of “Elisa Lari” Nursery School.

An "ad hoc" headquarters

In 1986, the disputed decision of the Municipal Administration to cut through the neighborhood with a fast road "crushed" the old school structure under a very noisy and suffocating overpass. The decision was then reached to build a new site for the nursery school. The new school is located in via Paradisi 4; it stands on approximately three thousand meters of land that the Parish, through the Curia, purchased from the Municipality with a deed of sale signed on 15 September 1981. It is a true jewel of school architecture, surrounded by greenery, where "architecture itself becomes an instrument educational”, functional to the guided self-development of the child's personality.

From the beginning, the school was directed by nuns from the “Piccole Figlie” Congregation of Parma. Continuously for 75 years, the nuns of this congregation have dedicated their lives to this work with great spirit of sacrifice, intelligence and professionalism.

As the religious staff gradually decreased, they were assisted by lay staff, present in ever greater numbers, until the Congregation decided to definitively withdraw. Therefore, starting from 10 September 2000, the "Elisa Lari" nursery school is managed entirely by qualified lay personnel, always in line with its identity as a Catholic school, so much so that its legal representative is the Parish Priest of Villa Ospizio Don Guglielmo Ferrarini and later Don Luca Ferrari.

In February 2001 the school obtained scholastic equality (D.M. Prot. N. 488/954 of 28 February 2000) placing itself within the National School Service.

In 2009, the spring section was inaugurated, which welcomes children aged 24 to 36 months, with the aim of providing greater support and support in the Christian education of the children welcomed. It follows a strong request from families and has the aim of providing greater support and support in the Christian education of their children. Incentivized by Regional legislation L. 19/16 and Ministerial law L. 65/17 but also by the needs of families, in the 2018/2019 school year, a request was made to lower the reception age of children to 18 months.

In the summer of 2010, the parish of San Francesco da Paola under the guidance of the parish priest Don Pietro Adani obtained state funding and thus renovated a large part of the building and the courtyard area. The new premises are inaugurated on October 1st in the presence of the mayor Graziano Delrio, the auxiliary bishop Lorenzo Ghizzoni, the parliamentarian Hon. Emerenzio Barbieri, the councilor for security Franco Corradini, the councilor for school Luna Sassi, the provincial councilor for culture Chierici, the councilor for culture Ilenia Malavasi and the then FISM President Mariannina Sciotti.

In the 2015 school year the school turned 90, for the occasion a party was organized which was attended by the vice mayor Matteo Sassi, the councilor for education Raffaella Curioni and Serena Foracchia, councilor for the international city.

Friends from abroad

For years the school has also been known abroad: Japanese delegations regularly visit to learn about the method. During these mornings they also show the children some of their customs and traditions. Collaboration has also been active for years with some Spanish universities (IES L'Eliana - Valencia, Spain; Escola FP La Safor Beniarjo - Valencia, Spain and XUNTA DE GALICIA IES - San Tomè de Freixeiro, Portugal).

Furthermore, since 2018 the school has collaborated with the municipality for the redevelopment of the neighborhood, holding monthly meetings and actively engaging. In particular, we collaborated with the neighborhood architect Dr. Vittorio Gimigliano in the creation of the Paulonie park.


The “Elisa Lari” school is part of a Federation of private Catholic schools (Fism) and participates in the pedagogical and educational reflection on childhood and in initiatives aimed at supporting and promoting a pedagogical culture aimed at dialogue, co-responsibility and shared development that enhance the specific educational responsibilities of each.

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