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History of Conrad ELC

Yevonne Conrad, the woman Conrad ELC was named after poses with big gold scissors after ribbon cutting

In recognition of Yevonne Conrad

The Conrad Early Learning Center honors and recognizes the lifetime commitment of Yevonne Conrad to District Eight’s early childhood education--spanning 35 years and counting.

Yevonne Conrad came to District Eight in 1980 and retired from full-time teaching in 2008. During that time she taught at Freedom’s Trail Elementary on post for the first 10 years and at Jordahl Elementary in Fountain for the remaining 18 years.   Following her retirement she has worked for the District in various roles including training, mentoring and consulting. Yevonne opened up the District’s first pre-school program at Freedom’s Trail in 1989 with teaching a colleague. Just one year later, she helped transition that pre-school concept to Jordahl where she implemented the existing pre-school program for in-town students and families.  In today’s ever-changing educational landscape, the pre-schools of 20 years ago are now known as Early Childhood Learning Programs and could be classified as a completely different culture. Much of Yevonne’s story is about how she guided the District through these cultural shifts in ideology, training, delivery and ultimately in the finished product--catching students at an earlier age to develop critical educational skills that will enable them to be successful in school and become life-long learners.

Yevonne grew up in an idealistic era of education, where educators were brokers in hope. Born and raised in a small Arkansas town by two parents that valued education and modeled lifelong learning by going back to school as adults set the stage for the teacher that Yevonne would become.  Yevonne knew she wanted to teach when she was in fifth grade. She had two influential teachers that year.  Little did they know the seed they would plant in the mind of a ten year old would grow and flourish to become an accomplished student and future educator.  Yevonne understood the value of work ethic and pursued her dream to teach the old fashioned way by working, saving and earning scholarship opportunities.