One hundred years ago children who grew up in this area never dreamed of a school such as Pioneer Heritage Middle School. Their little school didn’t have a gymnasium, a cafeteria, a library or computers. They walked to school through mud and ice or rode mules and horses, doing homework by lamplight. Genevieve “Sis” Newman Kerley remembers her brothers carrying her through the cold winter wind riding on their shoulders. The Newman children lived closest to the school and they never escaped the teacher’s notice, as he or she often lived at their house. When the weather turned bad the children who lived too far away to make it home safely spent the night with the Newmans.
The old Robertson School, which once sat near this site, was a one-room school with outdoor toilets. Back then young people achieved physical fitness achieved threshing wheat, picking cotton and hauling water from the well to do the laundry with a scrub board and tub. The lessons taught at school were the basics - reading, penmanship, and arithmetic. Texas history was still being carved out of the black land prairie and some children had relatives who could still remember the Civil War without referring to textbooks. Classes such as robotics and video production weren’t even imagined - though the children who lived west of Frisco in the early 1900s had watched a railroad being built and many could operate complicated farm machinery that today would be considered too dangerous for young people.
One of the Robertson School families was the Malones, whose ancestor had been James Robertson. All five of the Malone children grew up working on the farm, getting up hours before dawn to do chores before they even set out for the school that bore their great-grandfather’s name. All five Malone children completed college. It is in honor of the spirit of community and dedication to learning shared by families such as the Newmans, the Robertsons and the Malones and their friends and neighbors that we dedicate Pioneer Heritage Middle School. May a new generation of strong, intelligent, and hard-working Frisco children enjoy this special pioneer heritage.