‘My classmates are like my grandchildren’: Italian woman returns to school at 90 | Italy

An Italian woman who missed out on formal education because of World War II has returned to school to prepare for her school diploma – at the age of 90.

Annunziata Murgia is the oldest person to have taken courses for the media licenseor secondary school diploma, an examination usually taken by children in lower secondary education at the age of 14. She does this at night school near her home in Dolianova, Sardinia.

“I love studying, I’ve always loved it,” she told Il Messaggero. “But when the war broke out, everything changed for me. I had to go to work because my family was struggling and I had to play my part. Once upon a time, only those who had money could study.

Murgia said she learned to sew as a child and became a seamstress. But she read a lot of books, so she “studyed on my own, whenever I could.”

His passions are history and music. “I’ve always loved history books, also because I’ve experienced a lot of the history written in books – I’ve seen the aftermath of World War I and I’ve lived through World War II. “

Murgia’s youngest classmate is 16, a student who will be re-graduating as Murgia makes her first attempt in June. Passing the exam, which includes Italian literacy and mathematics tests, is necessary to be able to move on to upper secondary education, which in Italy ends at age 18.

Marina Pilia, literature teacher at the school, described Murgia as a very passionate and committed student.

“Although she has some difficulty hearing and was not in her best shape yesterday due to a fall, she is actively participating in lessons, especially in history,” Pilia said.

The school caters mainly for adult learning and people aged 16-20 who need to retake school exams. The average age of students in the Murgia class is over 40, some of whom are also preparing for the secondary school diploma.

“A lot of times it’s women who are getting their education back after having children, or people who never got the degree and need it to work, because that’s the minimum education requirement.” , said Pilia.

The last person in Murgia’s age group to take the exam at school was an 87-year-old woman, in 2016. Murgia said her teachers were “fantastic” and her classmates were “like my little ones.” -children”.

“Some come with me home in the evening, when it gets dark,” she added. And she is ready for the exam. “I will give it my all.”

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