Gimnasio Campestre

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Gimnasio Campestre
Calle 165 No 8 A 50.
Bogota, Colombia

Coordinates 4°44′34″N 74°01′38″W / 4.742728°N 74.027295°W / 4.742728; -74.027295
Type Private
Established 1945
Principal Juan Antonio Casas
Color(s) Yellow, White and Red
Athletics Soccer, Hockey, Basketball, Volleyball, Track and Field

The Gimnasio Campestre is an all-male, traditional and conservative Pre-K to 11th grade private school located in Bogotá, Colombia.


It was founded in 1946 by Alfonso Casas Morales, and its educational legacy has prepared several generations of "gimnasianos", as its alumni are known, offering them an education that has stressed the school motto, to "be men of honor". In 1987, after the passing of Mr. Casas, who served also as Principal and Director of the school since its creation, the board of directors chose Mr. Jorge Bernardo Londoño as his successor.


Continuing with Mr Casas' legacy, and preparing the school for the 21st century, Mr. Londoño began the modernization of the facilities, building a multi-court/ multi-purpose sports center, which also doubles as a concert hall.[1]

It was during this period that the traditional field trips for high-school seniors were extended to week-long excursions for every class, from 1st to 11th grade, to diverse destinations in Colombia and abroad.

Mr. Londoño was succeeded by Dr. Jaime Bernal, a medical geneticist, who due to his profession and his interest in scientific discovery, re-directed the modernization process to include an observatory (a participant of NASA's Radio Jove Project), and the most modern Molecular Biology Lab of any secondary education institution in the country.[2]

Students receive some classes in English, and the school has an English language lab for the elementary and pre-school levels.


The Gimnasio Campestre has a long tradition in Bogotá's history, where many graduates have become influential figures both at the local and at the national level. The school recently obtained an international certification by the Bureau Veritas for adhering to international teaching standards.

Among the extracurricular activities promoted by the school are a marching band, a Boy Scout troop, a student-run radio station, and a media room broadcasting school events in closed-circuit television, as well as prominent intramural and extramural sports teams.

Two traditional yearly events include the "Copa Tradición" and the "Batuta de Plata", the former a soccer match with the arch-rival team of the Gimnasio Moderno, the latter a marching band competition with prominent local school bands.

The Gimnasio Campestre and the Gimnasio Moderno have enjoyed for decades a healthy competition in sports and other events, and both schools continue to share a tradition of high ethical standards and scholarly comaradeship.

After the successful reforms in which Mr Londoño and Mr Bernal committed, Juan Antonio Casas Pardo, son of Alfonso Casas, was appointed to continue with the school's legacy.


Gimnasio Campestre has 3 aprobatory grades. Firstly bueno, which means good, that is the minimum grade to pass that in a 0 to 5 scale would be 3. Then it is Sobresaliente, which means outstanding, which is 4 and 5 would be Excelente which means excellent. There are also 3 non aprobatory grades. Insuficiente which means insuffisient, deficiente which means deficient and 0, thus you can only get this grade by doing nothing

Community impact[edit]

Students are highly involved with the neighboring communities, and the school recently inaugurated a public library featuring over 3000 titles available to low-income students of public schools. Gimnasianos also volunteer many hours of community service and every Friday donate groceries and non-perishable items to be distributed among low income families of nearby neighborhoods.

Its Alumni Association] has maintained a network of former students that expands over five decades and several generations, providing services such as a job bank and a bi-monthly newsletter that help reinforce the bonds created by classmates and their families during the thirteen years of shared experiences at the school.[3]

Today, the Gimnasio Campestre's headmaster is Dr. Alfonso Casas' son, Juan Antonio, who assumed his position in early 2006, when Jaime Bernal decided to continue his career as an educator at the Pontificia Universidad Javeriana, also located in Bogota.


Alumni include Ministers such as Enrique Low Murtra (one of the first victims of narco-terrorism while Minister of Justice during Virgilio Barco's presidency), Alberto Carrasquilla (former Minister of Finance), the former and recently re-elected Mayor of Bogotá Enrique Peñalosa, as well as relevant scientists, artists, Senators, and House Representatives, among others.

External links[edit]