Eight teachers have been at Roan Forest Elementary School since it opened 20 years ago. Tina Mireles, Jeanette McKeown, Michelle Langan, Jason Baker, Ann Ramirez, Stephanie Eickman-Hernandez, Heidi Zamora and Anna Barton are known as the Original Eight around campus.
While two decades have gone by since Roan Forest first opened its doors, it doesn’t feel like that much time has passed for the Original Eight.
“I know for the eight of us, it doesn’t feel like it’s been 20 years,” said Ann Ramirez. “My kids were two and four when we opened this school, so we’ve watched each other’s children grow up. We’ve been there through it all. It’s been so special to watch our students grow up and be successful. We started strong with leadership and academics and that hasn’t changed.”
Past and present students, teachers, families and principals returned to celebrate 20 years of success on Friday, March 4. Shannon Grona, North East ISD Board of Trustees President, returned as well. She’s a former Roan Forest PTA Officer with a personal connection to the school.
“This is where my kiddos grew up,” said Grona. “They had the most exceptional educational experience and I have so many fond memories at Roan Forest. Thank you to the staff, past and present, for all you do and continue to do for our kiddos now. They are having amazing experiences because of you.”
Each grade level selected an item to place into a time capsule to be opened in 2042. Some of the items included an unused COVID test, a Roan Forest t-shirt, a script from this year’s musical and “pop its” fidget toys. The Roan Forest Choir sang a beautiful rendition of “Children of the 21st Century” – the same song that was sung when the school opened 20 years ago.