Dorothy Smith Pullen Elementary School is the seventh elementary school to be built in Rockwall ISD. The school opened its doors to students in the fall of 1999, and its name honors a highly respected Rockwall teacher, Mrs. Dorothy Smith Pullen.
A Rockwall County native and graduate of Rockwall High School, Mrs. Dorothy Smith Pullen was born in Fate to Bob and Ada Lucinda Smith, a highly respected pioneer family and one of the largest landowners in the county. From the beginning of her career in a small rural school in 1936 until she retired in 1981, this gracious and intelligent lady was an inspiration to several generations of Rockwall children.
Mrs. Pullen’s teaching career spanned 40 years, all of which were in Rockwall County schools. After earning her Bachelor of Science degree from North Texas State College (now the University of North Texas), she taught in the county schools of Blackland and Fate. Shortly thereafter, she came to Rockwall Elementary School where she taught the second grade for 32 years.
Dorothy was the devoted wife of the late Jack Pullen, a former County Sheriff, and even made her home for a time on the bottom floor of the old Rockwall County jailhouse. During her career she was an active member of many national and local organizations, and she earned her Master of Education degree from East Texas State Teachers College (now Texas A&M University-Commerce). Mrs. Pullen also held an honorary membership in the PTA.
Built at a cost of $8.58 million, the 65,504 sq. foot building was developed to house 650 students from kindergarten through the sixth grade. In 1998, a citizens’ group, 2000 And Beyond. . . Together Bond Committee, successfully promoted the passage of a $48.67 million bond package to build Dorothy Smith Pullen Elementary School and Maurine Cain Middle School, to expand Rockwall High School, and to fund other capital improvements in five older schools. In the summer of 2005, Pullen Elementary underwent further expansion with the addition of eight more classes, each of which utilizes the district’s “inspired classroom” technology.
Today, this beautiful new school stands as the legacy of hundreds of citizens whose dedicated efforts made the vision of the 2000 and Beyond bond committee a reality. And of course, Dorothy Smith Pullen Elementary School will remain as a living tribute to the inestimable influence of a devoted teacher.