Clovis goes back to school

Leonard Freitas helps a student cross the road in front of Zia Elementary at Putnam Drive and Norris Street. Freitas. Wednesday was the first day if school for Clovis Municipal Schools. CNJ staff photo: Tony Bullocks

By Marlena Hartz: CNJ staff writer

Four hundred and seventy-six students piled into the classrooms of Mesa Elementary School on Wednesday, and they did so without a hitch, according to Mesa Elementary Principal Jan Cox.

“The first day was wonderful,” said Cox, whose enrollment numbers stayed steady from last year to this.

A new bus loop completed over the summer cleared congestion in the school parking lot, Cox said.

“That has made a big difference,” she said.

Others told the same story — the first day at Clovis Schools was a success.

Yucca Junior High School Principal Alan Dropps said the first day at Yucca went well despite ongoing construction at the school to repair water damage. More than 700 students are enrolled in the largest of the district’s three junior high schools.

Dropps said construction work on the Yucca roof did not impact instruction. About 18 classrooms don’t yet have air conditioning, but should by the end of the week, school officials said.

“Because we have air conditioning in most of the rooms, it didn’t affect us a lot,” he said.

“The school,” Dropps said, “looks pretty. The floors are all waxed and shined.”

Clovis Municipal Schools Director of Community Relations David Briseno also said Wednesday went well.

“Everyone is upbeat and happy. The kids are glad to be back at school,” Briseno said.

According to Briseno, enrollment across the district is down from the 2005-2006 school year. On the first day of the 2005-2006 school year, 7,692 students were enrolled. As of this Wednesday, 7,281 students were enrolled in the district.

The first day’s attendance, however, is not a good indication of enrollment, as it greatly fluctuates in the first weeks of school, Briseno said.

He said enrollment figures usually waver slightly from year to year.