The characteristic San Silvestre spirit depends greatly on the House system following the British tradition, with each house having its own emblematic colour. As from Grade 2 all students are assigned to a House. There are four Houses: Conroy, Evans, Hope or Kufal. House membership is passed from one generation to the next thus all members of one family belong to the same House. Each House is championed by a House Captain and a Deputy House Captain, under the leadership of the Head Girl, all of whom are Form V pupils. The House Captains are responsible for promoting house spirit and organizing and supporting House events. They fulfill their role with the trusty help of their deputies, house teachers, staff and peers.
Housemarks are given for demonstrating the attributes of the learner profile, academic work, effort, sports, conduct and special projects, thus promoting healthy competition but also encouraging teamwork.
Sofía Buckley Herrera or Miss Topy, as she was known by everyone, studied in San Silvestre until 1942. In 1947, Miss Topy returned to San Silvestre, this time as a teacher. She gradually took on more roles and responsibilities until she was named “Directora”, sharing her responsibilities with the Headmistress.
Miss Topy was a kind, much loved person who never sought a high profile, despite the great progress she achieved in education. Miss Topy died on January 6th 1995. In acknowledgement of a great teacher and a great person, the name of Commonwealth House was changed to Conroy House and the new Sports Complex was inaugurated in her name and in her memory.
Miss Margaret Evans was appointed Headmistress of the school in 1946.
She radically reorganised the school, turning it into an all-girls’ school and laying the foundations for the current school. Two years later, she introduced the system of Houses, naming them Kufal, Hope, Commonwealth and Cambridge. She appointed School Officials and Prefects encouraging pupils to assume leadership positions.
When Miss Evans retired in 1968, the name of Cambridge House was changed to Evans House in honour of a great Headmistress and an excellent person.
Miss Alice Dorothy Hope arrived at the school in 1938 as a teacher of Mathematics. She was a very demanding and disciplined teacher who quickly earned the respect of her pupils.
Her pupils remember that she taught them to put themselves in other people’s shoes and not be judgemental. They were surprised that such a strict person could be so sensitive.
Miss Hope died on January 7th 1947 whilst still a teacher in San Silvestre. Hope House was named in honour of this great teacher who had been with the school since the beginning.
Miss Nellie Kufal was foundress of San Silvestre School. She arrived in Peru after the First World War and in 1932 she began teaching a small group of children in her home on Calle Martir Olaya. In 1938 she started a school and she made her classes official with the Ministry of Education.
Miss Nellie Kufal was a very special person, accomplished and well-prepared. She could speak French, English, German, Latin, perfect Spanish and some Flemish. Despite being a very strict person, she was very caring and earned the love and respect of her pupils.
Miss Kufal died in 1944, after dedicating more than 12 years of her life to San Silvestre.