OF CAMEO ELEMENTARY SCHOOL
Cameo Elementary School began in 1971 when teachers
came from the old La Casita to teach at Cameo. The grades were
from 1st to 6th. There were four classes for 1st Grade and three
classes each for 2nd through 6th. They offered one Special Education
class. The first principal of Cameo was Mr. Danny Mitchell. He
was principal from 1971 until 1986. The first secretary was Mrs.Ruth
Snipes. There were many exciting things that went on here at Cameo
during the first years. The Cameo school mascot was a Cricket.
They were big supporters of the Clovis High School Wildcats. The
lunchroom workers would invite the CHS football and basketball
players to have lunch with the students on game day and they would
have a pep rally to get them excited about the game. Two of the
teachers that taught school during the beginning years of Cameo
are substitutes for our teachers today. Their names are Wilma
Ploudre and Jerry Lou Franse.
Mr. Dale Paul became the principal in 1986 and continued
through 1991. He set a good example for the students by writing
a, poem for the grade levels to help them make good decisions
at school. The poem called "Good
Decisions", that he wrote was part of a school wide effort
to encourage children to recognize the importance of making good
decisions. It was initiated in the office and incorporated into
every classroom. There was a "Good Decision Club" that
every student could be a part of. He had membership cards printed
up that had a poem on the back. If the children memorized the
poem they would get a membership card. The teachers posted posters
that said "Make Good Decisions!" When students were
disciplined, we would ask, "Did you make a good decision?"
Mr. Paul says that it got to the point that often when students
came into his office for discipline, the first thing that they
would say upon entering is "I'm sorry Mr. Paul, I made a
bad decision." At the beginning of each year, he talked to
the students in an assembly about the decisions that they make
while they are at school.
Tina Krattiger (Morris) became principal in 1991.
She was the principal of Cameo until 2000. She taught Kindergarten,
2nd and 4th grade here at Cameo for many years before she became
principal. She spent 17 years here at Cameo. There are many stories
and exciting things that happened here during her time as principal.In
1992, many of the students, especially the boys, began to grumble
about being called the Crickets. It seems the little league football
players were being called names by other teams and didn't like
the "weak image" of crickets. They allowed the upper
grade level classes to submit other suggested names. The names
were placed on a ballot and the entire school was allowed to vote:
the Cougars were born! It was a fun project that helped create
unity and school spirit. The hand mural that is in our main hallway
was painted during Mrs. Krattiger's time at Cameo. The district
theme during the year was "We Grow as We Go." Anna Eskridge
and Ninetta Warrior-Brown involved every student in the school
with this project. Everyone in the school was able to put their
hand in paint and place it on the wall to be apart of the mural.
It turned out beautiful and everyone had so much fun. They also
did some different things while she was principal. They performed
portfolio assessments on students. It came about due to staff
concerns about the discrepancies between data from report cards
and the data from the competency cards. A student could demonstrate
mastery of all the required competencies for a nine week period,
but end up with a poor grade on a report card. After much research
and many meetings with staff, we decided to replace report cards
with portfolios, more frequent parent/teacher/student conferences
and anecdotal records. It was a lengthy process involving lots
of meetings with staff and parents. Once everyone decided that
they wanted to go this route, we took it to the board to request
variances from board policy. It was approved! The conversation
became one between parents and students rather than judgment calls
on the part of the teacher that could sometimes be misinterpreted
or challenged by parents.
Mrs. Krattiger describes her time as principal of
Cameo to be a time of creating a trusting relationship between
all partners. We built a talented, cohesive staff that was highly
regarded and valued. Various teaching styles were recognized as
valuable so that the new teachers taught with newer methods right
next door to the more experienced teacher who used more traditional
methods. This made comprehensive K-6 education at Cameo a well-rounded
and diverse experience. It was a time when technology was becoming
a necessary tool for teaching and learning. It was a time when
literacy programs were being closely watched and discussed. The
era of standardized testing success was upon us. We treasured
each student and the individuality they brought to our school.
We respected all of our parents and recognized that they all wanted
a top-notch education for their child.
Nancy Sides became the principal in 2000 and remained
until 2002. She was also a teacher at Cameo before she became
principal. During her two years here, she had an appreciation
luncheon for the retired teachers of Cameo. It was a nice time
for the teachers to reminisce of their time here at Cameo.
Carrie Nigreville became principal
in the year 2002. We have done many exciting things while she
has been principal. On September 11, 2002, we invited local fireman
and police officers to have lunch with our students. We decorated
the lunch room and the children enjoyed meeting local heroes.
We had two fundraiser's during 2002 to raise money for new school
bleachers. Our students did a great job with the fundraiser's
and worked hard to raise money for the bleachers. They were purchased
and installed during our fall semester of 2003. We have enjoyed
using them this year! In the Fall of 2004 we adopted the Triple
"A" Way! Where students are Always Safe, Always Responsible,
Always Respectful! The new discipline policy is designed to increase
positive behaviors and decrease negative behaviors at our school.
We have also purchased a new sign for the front of the school.
As soon as it is up I'll have pictures of it on this site.
Michelle Southard became the Principal in 2007. We implemented a two hour Literacy Block every morning. Every person in our school is helping to teach literacy during that time. We are saving every possible instructional moment so that our teachers have the time they need to help our students succeed academically. We began our year with 9 new faculty members. The new teachers are so excited and fired up to make their mark on Cameo kids. We ordered green and gold jerseys for all of the staff and had their names printed on the backs. They were a huge hit. Lots of kids and parents wanted a jersey. We will continue to work as a team. We will own the successes and failures of all Cameo students from this moment on.
Tony Igo was named Principal at Cameo in May 2008. Julie Howell will be the new Instructional Coach. Current plans include continuing the 2 hour literacy block to increase our Reading and Math Skills. A Good Citizenship Program has been implemented along with renewed efforts in promoting the PBS behavior model.