Rupert Elementary School celebrates 90th anniversary
POTTSTOWN » It was a birthday bash to remember Sept. 8 as Rupert Elementary celebrated 90 years as a school.
Kids and parents could be seen in the parking lot of the school enjoying fun, games and treats as the birthday party kicked off. The event welcomed students, teachers, area residents and anyone else with special memories of the school to take part in the celebration.
While kids were having a blast enjoying games like bowling, Jenga, Connect 4 and the ever popular dunk tank, older residents came for some different reasons. Many former students and even some teachers returned to the school to enjoy the merriment and check up on their old stomp-
“I saw they were doing this in the paper and I wanted to come and I thought about Rupert because I started teaching here in ‘51 or ‘52,” said Russ Millard, a former 6th grade teacher at the school. “I remember it was a good school with great kids. So that’s why I’m here. I also thought maybe I would bump into somebody I taught with.”
Although Millard said he hadn’t yet talked to anyone he remembered from Rupert, he added that after coming back to visit, he gained an appreciation for the school building itself.
“I can’t believe how beautiful it is. It really is beautiful,” said Millard. “I didn’t appreciate it while I was there. I didn’t know how beautiful it was but now I see it. It’s gorgeous.”
And of course, no birthday would be complete without a cake. Guests were invited inside the school at around noon to take part in singing “Happy Birthday” and enjoyed a slice of cake that featured a photo of the school.
“This is our 90th school year so we thought this was a great reason to celebrate. I started meeting with staff who volunteered their time back in the spring to plan an event and make it a big birthday party,” said Matt Moyer, principal of Rupert Elementary School. “It’s just been a fantastic event so far. We just finished cutting the cake so we have that, a band. It’s just been awesome.”
Rupert Elementary is named for William Whitehead Rupert, Pottstown’s very first superintendent of schools.
In 1888, when parts of “Pottsgrove Township” became part of the borough, the population jumped to more than 13,000 and the number of students also jumped from 1,074 to 1,766, according to a 2009 article published in The Mercury by local historian Michael T. Snyder.
With the sudden rise in student population, the school board voted unanimously on July 11 of that year to name Rupert as the first superintendent of Pottstown Schools.
On June 12, 1913, on the occasion of his 25th year as superintendent, a special ceremony was held with testimonials and gifts including a “Russian wallet purse filled containing $100 in gold” and five weeks vacation, Snyder wrote.
In 1922, Rupert reached the mandatory retirement age of 70 and he stepped down, but returned five years later to kick off construction on the school which still bears his name.
Reporter Evan Brandt contributed to this article.
Bowling was one of the most popular games at the 90th birthday celebration for Rupert Elementary in Pottstown.
Kids played Connect Four and many other games during the celebration of Rupert Elementary’s 90th birthday.
There were games galore during Rupert Elementary’s 90th birthday celebration.
Rupert Elementary in Pottstown celebrated its 90th birthday with a party at the school. The celebration featured live music and lots of games and treats.
Kids took a shot at the dunk tank that was set up in the parking lot of Rupert Elementary as part of their 90th birthday celebration.
Rupert Elementary Principal Matt Moyer cuts into the birthday cake during the celebration of Rupert Elementary’s 90th birthday on.