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Education news and issues in the Ozarks.

SPS Administration Office Honors County Commissioner, Longtime Education Advocate Roseann Bentley

Roseann Bentley Administrative Center
Scott Harvey
/
KSMU
Roseann Bentley in front of the signage for the new SPS administrative center along E Sunshine that bears her name.

A new administration building for Springfield Public Schools bears the name of one of its former board members and longtime education supporter.

Officials on Thursday unveiled the new Roseann Bentley Administrative Center along East Sunshine St. Before roughly 150 attendees, the current Greene County Commissioner offered thanks by expressing she and her family’s appreciation for the district.

Roseann Bentley Administrative Center
Credit Scott Harvey / KSMU
/
KSMU

“We love our public schools. And I don’t know if we’ve truly realized what a gift we have in the largest in the state and the best school district in the state,” Bentley said.

Bentley served on the Springfield Board of Education from 1974-1983, followed by a nine-year stint as president of the Missouri State Board of Education. She was also the first woman elected to the state Senate from southwest Missouri.

“Sometimes the going was tough, sometimes the funds were very, very low, but we worked through it and I’m very proud of everybody; all the teachers, all the aides, all the superintendents I’ve known. It’s just a grand honor. I never dreamed I’d have a building named for me.”

The 30,000 square foot facility, which was purchased and then renovated by the district, now houses its health services, security, and athletics offices, among others that were previously scattered throughout the city. It minimizes SPS administration space from four down to two, with the Kraft Administrative Center being the other.

SPS Superintendent Dr. John Jungmann said throughout Bentley’s career she’s worked to make things better. He called the naming of the center a thank you for her courage to speak on behalf of children, and a reminder that “we all have the responsibility to improve lives.”    

Scott joined KSMU in November 2012. He had previously served five years as news director for KETR-FM, the public radio station in Commerce, Texas. A graduate of Northwest Missouri State University in Maryville, Scott enjoys producing human-interest stories, among other pieces that educate and engage the community. When not at work, he’s often taking part in outdoor activities, exploring new areas and restaurants, or staying up-to-date with the latest news and information. Scott was born and raised in Shenandoah, Iowa.