School bells ring again at the Mosul’s oldest Christian school

School bells finally rang at Shimon Safa Elementary School this fall, Mosul’s oldest Christian school that had been closed for four years. 

The school, also called the Shimon Safa Institute, is located next to the 9th century Shimon Safa Church and the monastery, which is known as the Shimon Safa priestly institute. The elementary school used to be one of 20 Christian schools in the multifaith city until the 1980s. Most of these schools were closed gradually in the three turbulent decades that followed the 1990 Gulf War, particularly in 2014-17 when the city was constrolled by the Islamic State (IS), Al Monitor reports.