brick frame, plastered facade, brick-adorned
The Sortavala Girls' School got its own building in 1911 after operating for a long time in rented facilities. As with the lyceum building next door, the designs were produced by chief architect Jac Ahrenberg, who designed the premises larger than originally planned. The state-of-the-art school building was furnished with electrical lighting and a ventilation system. "The interior of the building, with the open lobbies and light-filled classrooms creates a highly pleasing effect," Counsellor of Education Heinricius admires the girls' school in his inspection report from 1928.
As early as the 1840s, an unofficial Tovén school operated in Sortavala that provided education to the town's girls. In 1857, governess Charlotte Lydecken opened a school for children in the area, both girls and boys. She was the director of the school until 1861, after which the position was taken on by Evelina af Enehjelm for a two year period. After her, the position went to Hilda Fabritius, who remained director of the school for more than 40 years. Teaching language at the school was Swedish until 1882, when Fabritius changed it into Finnish. In 1904, the school became an official state school by the name of the Sortavala Finnish Girls' School. Based on a national decree issued in 1915, the girls' school gained a sixth grade, like all state girls schools in Finland. After the changes, the girls were able to study new subjects, such as English, chemistry, home economics and accountancy.