Anna Essinger

Posted: February 7, 2015 in Great Women Series


The legacy of Anna Essinger

The last few years have seen a remarkable revival of Anna Essinger’s reputation as an educationalist and headmistress of avant-garde co-educational boarding schools for (mainly) Jewish children in Ulm and Kent. As early as 1933, she transferred her school in Herrlingen, near Ulm, to Bunce Court, a manor house on the Kent North Downs. When the Kindertransports arrived, she expanded her school, which became home to hundreds of refugee children, although there was always a minority whose parents valued her progressive educational ideas. In 1940 she was forced to leave what had become a military zone and she transferred the school to Trench Hall, in Shropshire. After the war, she returned the school to Bunce Court but was obliged to close it for financial and other reasons in 1948.

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