How old this school is is a matter of conjecture. Transcripts found by the University of Vienna suggest that around 100 students from the School on the Hill, Sighisoara followed University courses between 1402 and 1520. Official records date from 1522.
By all accounts this was a top notch school and its syllabus included, over time, theology, philosophy, classical languages (Latin and Greek), music, mathematics, and astrology. One of its most famous students was Hermann Oberth – astrophysicist and “father of German rocketry” – having subsequently relocated to Germany. A monument to Oberth can be seen in the Lower Town.
Teaching in the school is still in German with parallel classes in Romanian. The school has been and remains a guardian of Saxon culture, traditions and ethnic identity.
The school’s official name is now the Joseph Haltrich High School, named after a famous 19th century ethnologist, priest and collector of folklore who was a former rector at the school.
In 1642 a covered wooden staircase was constructed to provide drier access for students coming up to the school from the Citadel as well as for parishioners of the Church on the Hill. I have written a separate review on the Scholars’ staircase.
Some good views down to the Citadel and Lower Town from here.
Address: On the hill above the Citadel
Directions: Accessed via the Scholars’ staircase