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President Piñera announces 100 new Bicentenary Flagship High Schools: "They will renew and strengthen the spirit and purpose of public education”

This will double the number of such schools currently in existence, so that by the end of this government administration, there will be a total of 300 Bicentenary High Schools, benefiting around 150,000 students across Chile.

On Thursday, President Sebastián Piñera announced a call for the creation of 100 new Bicentenary Flagship High Schools for next year, effectively doubling the number of such schools currently in existence.

"Bicentenary High Schools make a great contribution because they demonstrate that when there is commitment, willingness and leadership, quality education is possible," said the President. He was speaking at a ceremony at the Santa Teresa de los Andes High School in the Santiago district of Colina, where he was accompanied by Education Minister Marcela Cubillos, the principals of flagship high schools from across Chile, as well as teachers and students.

The Bicentenary High Schools initiative was created under President Piñera's first administration in order to highlight and promote education quality and excellence, mainly in secondary education. In 2014, there were 60 Bicentennial High Schools and 40 new ones were added last year. 

The call for applications to become the 100 new flagship high schools will be open until October 1. Eligible participants include schools run by public education service providers such as municipalities and local education services, private subsidized schools and delegated administration schools.

For the first time, the process will incorporate all official forms of education: humanist-scientific, technical and vocational and artistic.

By the end of this government administration there will be 300 Bicentenary High Schools, benefiting around 150,000 students across the country.

"They will renew and strengthen the spirit and purpose of public education," said the President.

Bicentenary High Schools have made a positive impact on the quality of education and currently benefit more than 83,500 students from Arica in northern Chile through to Punta Arenas in the south. In the SIMCE 2018 mathematics and language assessment test, the first 60 Bicentenary schools far exceeded the national average, while 60% of these institutions exhibit high performance standards, according to the Education Quality Agency.

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