Norman B. Hevel Elementary School, the most recent addition to the Romeo Community Schools family, was named in honor of a beloved Washington Elementary School principal. The school opened in the fall of 2002, and its official dedication ceremony was held on October 6, 2002.
Mr. Hevel began his career in Romeo as a 7th grade teacher in 1954. In 1955 he was appointed principal and held that position until his retirement in June of 1980.
Education has always been an important part of Romeo's history. The first settlers arrived in the Romeo-Washington area from New England in the 1820's. The area's first log schoolhouses were built in 1824. Attendance records show that 27 or 28 students attended each schoolhouse in the first years.
A census at about the same time showed that nearly 1000 people lived in the six-mile area around Romeo. Rural or country schools began springing up all over the surrounding area. The earliest rural schools, named for the farmer on whose land the school stood, were single room buildings with poor ventilation and bad lighting. Hot in the summer and cold in the winter, these structures offered little or no protection from the elements. Nonetheless, education in the Romeo area was a vital part of family life. Every member of the community considered education a worthy sacrifice of time and money, proving that then as now, education was of the utmost importance to the families in our area.
Unlike the schoolhouses of old, the new Norman B. Hevel Elementary School is specifically designed to facilitate the delivery of its programs and concepts within two "neighborhoods". Each neighborhood is comprised of three grade K-2 or three grade 3-5 "houses". Hevel School features all of the updated equipment students need to compete in a technological world.