Albert Farine Elementary School opened in September of 1956 as Rochelle Elementary School. In 1967 the school’s name was changed to Albert Farine Elementary. In 1964 20 new classrooms were added. In 1968 a portable building was moved on the school grounds to be the school’s library. In the 1977 renovation of the school the library was relocated to the northwest side of the building. Additional renovations were completed with recent bond funds. The first principal was George Irby. He was followed by Mr. Brooks Conover and then Mr. Neal Brown. Other principals include Wallace Wimbish, Jan Miliara, Julie Miller, Shannon Cole, and Lisa Hill. The principal in 2016 is Joe Estrada.
Albert Farine was born on October 6, 1868 to Nicholas and Lucinda Jane Farine. He grew up on a farm in northwest Dallas County owned by his parents. His father, Nicholas Farine, was born in France and immigrated to the United States due to political issues in France. He was a music composer. Albert played the French harmonica.Albert married his childhood sweetheart Rosetta Crabtree on October 30, 1891. They lived briefly in a house located on the property where Farine Elementary School stands now. They had seven children and wanted them to be educated. He helped build and maintain Elm School (see picture below) which used to stand across the street from where Farine is now. Albert helped hire and pay the teachers. Sometimes he even provided room and board for the teacher. He later purchased a farm which was within the area bounded by Highway 183, MacArthur Boulevard, and Grauwyler Road. Mr. Farine donated land for each of those roads to be built. Albert’s home was once where the Irving Art Center is today. On his farm he grew just about everything, but he took particular pride in his fruit trees and the fig trees his father brought with him to this country. Mr. Farine also bought and sold real estate. He even purchased some of the first lots offered for sale when Irving was established in 1903. Albert supported the community in many ways. During the Depression one Christmas, he donated the tree for the community celebration. He was a charter member of the Northwest Dallas County Association which was found in April 1931 to encourage growth of business and education in Irving and surrounding areas.
Irving Archives document “Albert Farine Elem. School” 1977(?) and Dorothy Jean Story Hawkins letter to Principal of Farine, Aug. 17, 2001. Find a Grave http://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GRid=19932562 • Ancestory.com • Stanton, Norma. Irving, Texas: From Rails to Wings 1903-2003. This web page was created July 2016 by the Celebrating Irving Committee of the Irving Heritage Society in partnership with Irving Independent School District.Photos used with the permission of Irving ISD and Irving Archives, Irving Public Library