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Xuhui Public School was established in 1850 by the Catholic priest Claude Gotteland during Emperor Daoguang’s reign (1820–1850) in the Qing Dynasty (1644–1912).The school was originally known as College Saint Ignace de Zi-Ka-Wei, and was also called Xujiahui Public School or Xuhui Public School for short because it is located in the Xuhui District.
As one of the first Catholic schools in China, it was renamed Shanghai Xuhui Private High School in 1932 and was still operated by the Catholic Church.In 1953, it was nationalized and renamed Xuhui High School. The reputable educator Ma Xiangbo (1840–1939) graduated from this school and served as its headmaster during 1871–1874.
The four-story Chongsi Building, the school’s most well-known building, is an example of French Renaissance architecture with supporting exterior brick veneer on wood construction.In 1994, the building was listed by the Shanghai municipal government as an Excellent Historical Building.