Handorf ES History

Opened: 1972
Closed: 1978

Handorf Elementary School was originally known as Greven Elementary School. The following is an article from Grevener Rückspiegel printed August 9, 2008:

“In the 70s there was an American School in the Hansviertel”
(Name of a location in Greven)

In 1968 an American Elementary School was built, close to the already existing Dutch school. It consisted of three classrooms and a teacher’s lounge. About forty students attended the lessons. As there was no office, the teacher’s lounge was used. The twenty-eight American families, who lived in Greven and in Handorf, provided the students.

In the summer of 1975 however, the Dutch and American NATO troops (NIKE Rocket Base) and their families left Greven and Handorf. That was the end of the school in Greven.

The first principal of the school was Nicholas Speros. He was the principal for Greven, Schledehausen, and Soegel. The number of students increased at Greven, so Mr. Speros transferred furniture from his other schools. The first and second graders were taught in the hallway.

The next principal, Dick Wiedmann, was the principal of Greven from 1973 to 1976. In 1974 the school in Graven became too small since the enrollment was over ninety students. Another building located about seven kilometers out from Greven was added. The name of the school remained Greven American Elementary School. The first through third grades stayed in Greven, while the fourth through eighth graders were located to the new building.

In 1975 the Dutch NATO troops left Greven and Handorf and the school in Greven was closed. It was relocated to a building in Handorf that the Dutch had left behind. The principal at the new school in Handorf was Dr. Lynda Simmons. She was the principal for the next two school years.

Dr. Candace Ransing became the principal in 1978 and the school was moved from Handorf to Muenster (British Barracks) where it remained until Muenster American Elementary School was closed in 1992.


Information provided by Ms. Lynda Simmons, school principal,
and Ingrid Rosenow, host nation teacher at school for over 20 years

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