Founder organizations

Itaka-Escolapios is an international network, created and maintained by the Order and the Fraternity of the Pious Schools, consolidated and locally rooted, integrated into the life and the mission of the Demarcations and Fraternities of the Pious Schools, the driving force of the Piarist Christian Community and in its evangelizing, educational, and social work, bringing the steps of St. Joseph Calasanz to the modern world.

We are committed to the education of the most disadvantaged people as the best way to transform the world and prepare a better tomorrow, making the new generations to contribute with responsibility the best of themselves.

We believe that it is possible to make a world as God intended and that only in this attempt life takes on its full meaning. Our path is education, the proclamation of the Good News of Jesus and the commitment to solidarity in our environment, involving our whole life.

We are called by the dream of reaching Ithaca, the island that is not on any map, but which guides every navigator. Even if we do not reach it, the journey is wonderful. We trust in our companions along the way and in the possibility of reaching it. There we sense the presence of God himself.


Brief historical overview

  • The ITAKA Association was founded on 15 October 1985 to give entity and continuity to the groups of former students, to obtain subsidies and to cover the first projects (Gesture for Peace, support for children’s homes…).
  • In 1991, in addition to being recognised as a public utility, it was also recognised as an NGDO (development NGO) and was eligible for international cooperation aid.
  • Several existing associations (Itaka Association, Mikel Deuna, Iturralde Eskola, Haurrak, Zaleki, Pottoka… and later Gazteragintza, Lurberri and Goizalde) joined the Itaka – Escolapios Foundation on 8 March 2001, with two founding entities: the Province of Vasconia and the Itaka Fraternity.
  • The identity, aims and organisation are set out in the Statutes, which have been modified several times to adapt to the situation at any given time.
  • On 28 January 2005, in Barcelona, at a meeting of Father General, Jesús Lecea and the Provincials of Spain, a modification of the Foundation was offered to form a resource centre for cooperation to help the Piarist mission wherever it is needed.
  • In the same year, agreements were signed with provinces and fraternities, as well as with other current Emmaus presences, and the Foundation gradually expanded with the creation of new headquarters to give it a more prominent role in each place.
  • As far as possible, official recognition of the same Foundation is sought in other countries (the transfer from the Basque Country Register of Foundations to the State Register is also carried out). And, if this is not possible, another entity with the same name and similar purposes is set up and linked by means of agreements. The criteria are to be one and the same entity, even if this is not legally possible.
  • On 16 April 2011, the General Congregation recognised the Itaka-Escolapios Foundation as a reality of collective charismatic and juridical integration, a platform of Piarist presence and mission shared institutionally between Piarist Demarcations and Fraternities.
  • In May 2012, the 1st Advisory Council was held to present the situation of Itaka-Escolapios and to advance in the involvement of Provinces and Fraternities.
  • In January 2015, the II Advisory Council highlighted the wide range of possibilities of the Network and the need to be aware of them and make the most of them all.
  • On 9 July 2015, the General Congregation and the General Fraternity Council drew up and approved the Programmatic Letter defining the identity and contribution of the Order, Fraternity and the Itaka-Escolapios Network.
  • In May 2018, the 3rd Advisory Council took an important step in the internationalisation of all the teams to better visualise the Network and share responsibilities.
  • In October 2018, a meeting was held in Madrid with the Major Superiors who have a Fraternity in their Demarcation and then with those who participate in Itaka-Escolapios to deepen the need to incorporate both realities in life, mission, and presence.
  • In March 2021, in the IV Advisory Council, a strategic plan is drawn up, focused on the growth of the double Piarist subject (Order and Fraternity) and on their joint mission.


At present, the Itaka-Escolapios network is made up of the Order of the Pious Schools through its General Congregation and the General Fraternity through its General Fraternity Council, with the participation of twelve demarcations and five fraternities, all of them with different degrees and specific areas of collaboration: