Opal Smith Elementary School Ribbon Cutting
In the world of education, innovation is the key to providing students with the best possible learning environment. On November 7, 2023, this concept was perfectly embodied in the ribbon-cutting ceremony of our new school campus. The event was hosted by Crandall ISD and embraced the enduring legacy of Opal Smith, a dearly cherished teacher.
The event commenced with a speech from Crandall ISD Superintendent, Dr. Anjanette Murry, and was followed by spirited performances from Opal Smith Cheer team, and JROTC. The assembly also featured addresses from a range of speakers, including Amanda Roberts who gave Opal Smith’s biography, Board President Rick Harrell, Principal Jennifer Scott, teacher Kharen Davis, and 6th-grade student Maleah Cuizon. Together, these representatives extended a warm welcome to the inauguration of the first 6th-grade graduating class.
Attending the event were Opal Smith’s children and their spouses, WRE Architects, Gallagher Construction, members of the CISD School board and staff, and representatives from the local media.
After the ceremony, Opal Smith staff took time to give us a tour of the campus’s modern layout, highlighting the architecturally stunning and functional design. The campus was intentionally crafted by WRA Architects, Inc. and constructed by Gallagher Construction Services, to optimize the flow of learning. The spacious and open concept provides room for growth, socializing, and technology integration to ensure learning remains relevant and dynamic. The major school features include:
- Collaboration spaces: A space where students can work together on projects, share ideas, and learn from one another.
- Multiple Playgrounds: In between the academic and cafeteria wings of the campus, there is the garden-style playgrounds, complete with lush turf, which offers students a safe and inviting space to explore, play, and exercise.
- Multi-use cafeteria: This is much more than just a place for lunch, the glass wall is convertible to transform the area for events with a stage.
- Learning- hub Library: The library offers access to a vast array of physical and digital resources aimed at the future way of life.
Additional spaces include an interactive science room, school digital equipment and furniture, a 2-story academic wing, and a gymnasium. The modern flexible design promises to revolutionize the way children are educated, something Heartland parents are enjoying.
The advantages it brings to Heartland community members
Opal Smith Elementary will have advantages with the Heartland Education Foundation, a partnership with CISD, contributing immeasurable value by investing in the intellectual capital of students by offering after-school programs, band equipment, scholarships, and educational resources. Major programs of the Heartland Education Foundation currently include the following programs:
- Air Reading
- The Perot Museum
- Junior Achievement
- Math Nation
- Successful Students & Athletes
- Alpha Best
- Virtual Reality Esports
- Communities in Schools
The Foundation has helped tremendously with the learning and growth levels within the Heartland community.
Heartland Texas is home to three Crandall ISD elementary schools: Barbara Walker Elementary School, Hollis T. Dietz Elementary School, and now Opal Smith Elementary.
Crandall ISD is rapidly expanding, having recently unveiled the new Crandall Middle School campus for the 2022-2023 school year, added the Crandall High Multipurpose weight room, introduced a 50,800 sqft multi-activity building, and expanded the Crandall High School campus.
According to The Texas Tribune, the accountability rating for the 2021-2022 school year stands at a B rating. The district aims to elevate the educational journey for every student, creating a desire for parents to choose this district as a home.
The ribbon-cutting was more than just a ceremonial event; it marked the beginning of a new era in education for Crandall ISD. The district is poised to empower students for success in a rapidly changing world. This investment in the future of education will pay dividends for generations to come.