Contribute by Ken McLemore, Communication Director, Hope Public Schools
HOPE – The 2019 honorees of the Hope Public School District to the Hope Educator Hall of Fame were announced by HPSD Superintendent Dr. Bobby Hart to the Hope Public Schools Board at its May 20 meeting.
The six honorees were selected through nominations from the public. The honorees also will be inducted into the Hempstead County Educator Hall of Fame along with honorees from other public, private and post-secondary schools in Hempstead County as those designations are made.
The HPSD honorees will be formally recognized at Hammons Stadium prior to the Sept. 20 football game between Hope and Prescott.
The 2019 HPSD honorees include:
Mrs. Brown began her 46-year education career as a classroom teacher in Lakeview, Texas, in 1930. She later taught in the Guernsey, Patmos and Hope schools. Mrs. Brown received her bachelor of arts degree from Henderson State Teacher’s College in Arkadelphia and a master’s degree from East Texas Teacher’s College. She was the first principal of the newly-constructed Brookwood Elementary School, completed in 1948, and the campus was renamed Edith Brown Elementary School in her honor upon her retirement in 1976.
Miss Henry was the second woman in Arkansas history to serve as the superintendent of an Arkansas public school district. She received her bachelor’s degree from Henderson-Brown College in Arkadelphia and her master’s degree from Peabody College. She served as principal of Hope High School, as well as superintendent of the district upon her appointment in 1929, remaining until her retirement in 1942. She guided the district through the construction of the original structures on the current HHS campus in 1931. Miss Henry later served on the Arkansas State Board of Education and the current Beryl Henry Elementary School was named in her honor upon its completion in 1967.
James H. Jones
James H. Jones was the third superintendent of the Hope Public Schools, serving as an educator in his native Hope from 1936-1973. He was a graduate of the Hope Public Schools prior to his higher education. Jones served as principal at Hope High School from 1936-1942, when he was named superintendent of schools. Jones guided the district through financial shortfalls in the Great Depression, teacher shortages during World War II, and the advent of school desegregation.
Ruth Flowers Love
Mrs. Love graduated from Langston High School in Hot Springs before earning a bachelor’s degree from Arkansas Agricultural Mechanical and Normal College, now the University of Arkansas – Pine Bluff, with a major in music and a certification in business. She taught in the Washington, Clow and Guernsey schools prior to teaching at Henry Clay Yerger High School in Hope for 15 years. She taught typing, keyboarding, bookkeeping, accounting, choir and American history at Hope High School until her retirement.
George Straughter taught math and coached athletics at the former Henry Clay Yerger High School in Hope. He later continued teaching math at Hope High School, and became a counselor at HHS after the establishment of that office by the late Earl Downs.
Alice Straughter taught at the former Shover Street Elementary School on the former Henry Clay Yerger campus. She later continued teaching in the elementary grades in the Hope Public Schools.
Nominations were based upon criteria including retirement from the field of education in the Hope Public Schools; a minimum of 10 years of active service as an HPSD educator; and, the acceptance of posthumous recognition.