Sportfield ES History

Opened: 1982
Closed: 2006

Sportfield Elementary School, located in Hanau, Germany officially opened in 1982. Prior to 1982 the school was considered an annex of Hanau Elementary School. The main building was located on Old Argonner Kaserne. A K-5 school, Sportfield had an average enrollment of 450 students. Its mascot was the Eagle. Each day students proudly recited the school pledge, “I am an eagle, a Sportfield Eagle, I accept the challenge to be the best that I can be. I respect and honor myself and all others. I learn and grow as an intelligent and decent human being. I am an eagle, a Sportfield Eagle.”

Memorable school events/activities:

  • Talented and Gifted Students won the German-wide Odyssey of the Mind Competition and traveled to Ames, Iowa to enter the world competition
  • Norman Bridwell noted author of the Clifford Book series visited the school
  • A section of the Berlin wall was installed in front of the school. (Sept. 1993)
  • SES students adopted a unit serving in Operation Joint Endeavor and sent packages with goodies to the soldiers
  • The school newspaper, the Eagles Eye, was published for a ten-year period
  • The school hosted a community technology day for parents and a home school reading program.

Students at Sportfield Elementary School participated in numerous humanitarian and community projects.

  • American Red Cross
  • Students raised over $12,300 for a former student who was diagnosed with brain cancer.
  • Community clean-up
  • Student Council held a clothing drive “Clothes for Cold Kids in Czechoslovakia.”
  • “Provide Santa Program” – SES students contributed enough candy, clothing, and toys to fill a five-ton truck bound for former Yugoslavia.

Sportfied Elementary School established host nation partnerships with local schools and planned and participated in activities during German American Week. The school also formed an exchange program with a school in Russia. During the 1994-95 school year 36 Russian school children and their sponsors visited the school. Later, Sportfield students and sponsors traveled to Ivanovo, Russia as part of the exchange program.

The students at Sportfield participated in numerous study trips. Of note, the school took the entire student body to the Michelstadt Christmas Market, one of the most beautiful in Germany. They visited the market at night so the kids could see the market with all the lights. They also took the entire school on a Rhine River cruise. Both were challenging logistically because the students came from Sportfield housing which served mostly lower enlisted families. The school felt it important to give the students those kinds of opportunities.

Principals of the school include John O’Reilly, 1982-1998; Eric Gentry, 1998-2005; and Debbie Brooks, 2006-2006.

Sportfield Elementary School closed June 9th, 2006. Current and former faculty, and students, parents, community members and distinguished guests attended the closing ceremony. A timeline of events that took place in the school over its 24 years of operation was developed by the staff. The staff and students received a T shirt with a picture of the school on it with the following statement, “The Proud Eagle Soared High. Its Flight May Have Ended, But Its Legacy Will Live On.”


Information provided by Debbie Brooks and Eric Gentry

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