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Hemet Unified School District

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Fruitvale Elementary Celebrates its 25th Anniversary

Fruitvale Elementary School hosted a celebration on October 20th for its 25th Anniversary at the current school site. Students and current and former staff members all gathered together to recognize the evolution of the school. 

Fruitvale Elementary’s current school site was opened in 1991. However, the school actually dates back to 1896, where it served students of the agriculture and farming community of Hemet. In 1914 the Fruitvale Schoolhouse was built for $4,000. The two-room schoolhouse housed students in first through eighth grade. 

When the current Fruitvale site was opened, Principal Nancy Divine was quoted saying, “I would like this place to be a school where every student is valued for their abilities. I want it to be a school where teachers feel they have a part in designing the programs and where they feel they have a lot of rewards for what happens when students are successful.” At the celebration Principal Karen Brooks read the quote and stated that these beliefs still hold true to this day. 

Principal Brooks invited Mr. Christensen and Mrs. Bartley to join her at the podium. She informed the crowd that they were teachers when the school was first opened. In honor of their 25 years, they were presented with framed certificates. 

Brooks also spoke of Fruitvale’s achievements throughout the years. The most notable were in May 1997 when Fruitvale was recognized as a California Distinguished School, and during the 2008-09 school year when it received the Title One Academic Achievement Award. 

“This is truly an exceptional educational institution that has served the community of Hemet for 25 years!” said Brooks. She asked the audience if they would join her in singing “Happy Birthday, Fruitvale” as the Rancho Viejo Middle School jazz band played.   

Fruitvale staff was excited to have the Rancho Viejo’s jazz band perform during the celebration. Brooks recognized each of the 16 band members in attendance for their performance and for being former Fruitvale students. 

The Nutrition Services Department provided brownies for all in attendance. The brownies had a powdered sugar “25” in recognition of the Anniversary.

Congratulations Fruitvale on 25 wonderful years, and thank you to everyone that was able to attend this celebratory event and show your support!

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