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Roeper School to Hold Memorial Service for Late Founder

A memorial and picnic reception honoring the late Annemarie Roeper will be held at 10:30 a.m. Saturday at the Roeper Lower School.

The will be hosting a memorial service this weekend to honor Annemarie Roeper, one of the school's late founders.

near her home in Oakland, CA when she was 93, founded the Birmingham- and Bloomfield Hills-based Roeper School with her late husband George in 1941.

The school, which currently has 560 students enrolled in preschool through high school, caters to gifted students and when it was founded, was one of the first schools to do so in the U.S.

To celebrate Annemarie's life, Roeper will be holding a memorial service, picnic, reception and "story time" beginning at 10:30 a.m. Saturday at Roeper's lower school campus in Bloomfield Hills.

Roeper teachers, community members, students, parents and alumni are encouraged to attend.

"(Annemarie and George Roeper)'s educational vision encompassed a profound respect for the individual and a commitment to freedom of growth and learning within an emotionally and intellectually supportive community," a press release from Roeper reads.

In May, , sharing their experiences and discussing what the Roepers' legacy means to the school today.

"She's a heroic figure in my life," said the now-graduated Roeper senior Ruthie Lane, who spent time with Annemarie in January during a school trip. "I feel very privileged to have met her and go to this school."

The Roepers fled Nazi Germany in 1939, later coming to Detroit in 1941 to start up a psychoanalytically-oriented nursery and grade school.

The school grew rapidly thanks to the Roepers' humanistic and innovative approach to education, and the couple purchased the campus in Bloomfield Hills in 1946. The school added the Birmingham campus for middle and upper school students in 1981.

Eventually, the school would focus exclusively on gifted education, becoming in 1956 only the second elementary school in the country to do so. During the next half century, Roeper and her husband — who passed away in 1992 — became pioneers in the realm of gifted education and mentors to hundreds of educators.

The memorial service begins at 10:30 a.m. Saturday, followed by a picnic reception at noon. A "story time" begins at 1 p.m. The Roeper Lower School Campus is located at 41190 Woodward Ave.

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