Girl Scouts and Head Start

Girl Scouts work with Head Start 07-12-1967

I wrote a story for the July 15, 1967 Youth Page about Senior Girl Scouts working with Cape Girardeau’s Head Start program. Here’s the story and some photos that didn’t run. You can click on the photos to make them larger.

This is the caption for the one photo that WAS published: Johnnie Bell enjoys an apple snack under the encouraging smile of Miss Barbara Heye, one of five Senior Girl Scouts working with the Cape Girardeau Head Start program as volunteer teachers assistants. Johnnie is the son of Mr. and Mrs. Sam Bell, Pecan Street, and Miss Heye is the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Paul Heye, 1651 Perryville Road. There are 176 children enrolled in the federally-financed program designed to prepare young children for regular school experiences.

Girls “dearly love it”

Girl Scouts work with Head Start 07-12-1967Five Senior Girl Scouts who have been working with Head Start at Jefferson School this summer “dearly love it,” Mrs. Stanley G. Diehl, troop leader, said today.

The Misses Carmen Anderson, Louann Diehl, Barbara Heye, Mary Jane Seay and Susie Fox have been working full time as volunteer teachers assistants.

They are members of Troop 100.

Girl Scouts work with Head Start 07-12-1967“I really liked it,” commented Miss Seay. “From the first day I enjoyed working with the children.”

The Central High School senior added, “When you first look out and look in this thing, you’d think it wouldn’t work. I think it helps them a lot!”

Miss Fox agreed: “I think it’s great! The kids love it – and I’m having a great time, too.”

Have seen change in youngsters

Girl Scouts work with Head Start 07-12-1967Most of the girls have noted a change in the youngsters since the program’s start four weeks ago.

“The first week I was here, the kids were kind of shy,” Miss Fox observed. “Now we get along just great.”

“Getting along really well”

Girl Scouts work with Head Start 07-12-1967Miss Anderson also found this shyness a barrier initially, “but lately we’ve been getting along really well.”

“The children are a lot more forward now,” Miss Seay has found. “The first day they kind of shied away, but they’re more outgoing now and they’re talking more.”

Need note of authority

Girl Scouts work with Head Start 07-12-1967One thing the girls have learned from their experiences this summer is the psychology of dealing with young children. “You have to be nice to them, but you also have to have a note of authority so they’ll respect you,” Miss Anderson discovered. She found the experience particularly valuable because she hopes to teach at a private camp next summer.

“Great opportunity: for girls

Girl Scouts work with Head Start 07-12-1967Mrs. Diehl said that working with Head Start has been a “great opportunity” for the girls.

In addition to the five full-time helpers, there are a number of other Girl Scouts who help in the Head Start program.

Miss Anderson is the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. G.L. Anderson, Kage Road; Miss Diehl is the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Stanley G. Diehl; Miss Heye is the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Paul Heye, 1651 Perryville Road; Miss Seay is the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. John Seay, 1520 Jane;, and Miss Fox is the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Milford Fox, 415 South Missouri.

Head Start prepares for regular school

Girl Scouts work with Head Start 07-12-1967Head Start, the official explain, is meant to help some children from moderate income families gain experiences they need to get full value from regular public school programs.

Specifically, the program is “planned primarily to help children who who lacked opportunity and encouragement to develop mentally, physically and socially to the maximum of their potential.”

Ride buses to school

Girl Scouts work with Head Start 07-12-1967In the morning, the Head Start youngsters are picked up by bus at their homes. After they arrive at school, they are given breakfast to develop group eating habits. [The boy’s name tag reads “Luther Howard – 748 Giboney.]

The half-day sessions alternate play periods with learning and resting periods.

Field trips

Girl Scouts work with Head Start 07-12-1967Field trips – by bus and by foot – give the the children a chance to see what goes on on a farm, at the airport, at a grocery store. Visits by policemen, firemen and other city officials give them an opportunity to learn about the roles of these community helpers.

About 180 Cape Girardeau children are taking part in Head Start.

Jefferson School = Gone

Site of Jefferson School after demolitionYou’d never know that Jefferson School, built in 1904, ever existed if you drive by Jefferson and Ellis Streets today. The building was razed at the end of 2012 after it was determined that it was structurally unsound.

Tree, stump and stairs remain

Jefferson School North side 03-28-2010The tree on the left of the sidewalk, the stump on the right and the sidewalk are about all that remain of the school, pictured here March 28, 2010.

Overall view looking south

Site of Jefferson School after demolitionThe piles of dirt in the background were hauled in to fill in the building’s basement. A worker at the site said they brought in more than was needed, so it will be removed. The area will be seeded soon.

Looking west toward Ellis Street

Site of Jefferson School after demolitionThis is looking west toward Ellis Street. An Erin Ragan story in The Missourian Dec. 28, 2012, reported that some of the brick and limestone from the school will be incorporated into a building for Prodigy Leadership Academy.

Earlier Jefferson School stories

Site of Jefferson School after demolitionThis photo was taken looking east down Jefferson Street. Here are earlier stories about the school and its prospects for survival:


Endangered Buildings List

Scott Moyers had a story in The Missourian that the Cape commission had released an endangered buildings list. Here are the ones considered most endangered:

  • B’nai Israel Synagogue, 126 S. Main St.
  • Broadway Theater, 805 Broadway
  • Esquire Theater, 824 Broadway
  • Fort D blockhouse, 920 Fort St.
  • Franklin School, 215 N. Louisiana St.
  • Hanover Lutheran School, 2949 Perryville Road
  • Old Jefferson School, 731 Jefferson Ave.
  • Kage School, 3110 Kage Road
  • Lorimier Apartments, 142-148 S. Lorimier St.
  • Sturdivant Bank, 101 N. Main St.

I’ve done stories on almost all of them. Here’s a look back:

Kage School

I imagine the long, cold walk to the outhouse was not fun for this little guy,

Broadway Theater

I spent many a happy hour in the Broadway balcony

  • I was sure that the inside of the old Broadway Theater would be a disaster with the roof falling in and debris all over the place. When I got my first glimpse of the interior, I was transported back to the days of Saturday matinee movies in a grand theater. It’s ragged, but it’s still grand.
  • The basement under the theater was HUGE, but the dressing rooms for the old stage actors were tiny.

Esquire Theater

The Esquire had over a mile of neon lighting when it opened in 1947

Fort D

The building we know as Civil War Fort D didn’t exist until 1937. It was used as a residence in the 1960s.

 101 North Main / Sturdivant Bank

Bank, telephone exchange building, Minnen’s Dress Shop, Cape Wiggery. The old building at 101 North Main Street has been many things and has some interesting connections to other pieces of Southeast Missouri history. Its neighbor, the St. Charles Hotel, home to General Grant in the Civil War, was torn down in 1967.

B’nai Israel Synagogue

The B’nai Israel Synagogue is in an historical triangle that includes the Red House and St. Vincent’s Church.

Jefferson School

Jefferson was a black school in 1953-1955 before the system was integrated.

Franklin School

This part of Franklin School will be torn down when the new building behind it is completed.


Can Jefferson Be Saved?

I ran photos and background on Jefferson School, Cape’s oldest standing school, in the spring of 2010. After I read a Scott Moyers Missourian story on Sept. 8, 2011, saying that the school was slated to be razed the next week, I figured it was all over for the building. On Sept. 21, though, Scott has a story saying the demolition had been postponed until an environmental assessment could be done.

One last look

I decided to take another look at the historic building, which was the last segregated black schoolhouse in town.

It wasn’t encouraging. When I walked back to the car, I told Mother, “It’s going to be a race between tearing it down and having it fall down. I can see through some of the upstairs windows that the roof has collapsed. The east wall has cracks and looks like it’s bulging out.”

Maybe it’s not that bad

I happened to be talking with a man whose family has built and restored masonry buildings in Cape for decades. He said that he took a look at the building about six months ago and didn’t share my impression that it couldn’t be salvaged. The cracks around and above the windows aren’t anything that can’t be fixed, he claimed.

“I can look at a wall and tell if it’s straight or not. If the bottom’s broken and sheared, there’s nothing you can do but work from the bottom to the top, but if it’s just cracks around the windows at the tops, you can tuckpoint them.” He said that the foundation stones and walls are in good shape.

Landmark or rubble?

Will someone with the will and cash to restore the building step in at the last minute? If the fellow I talked with is correct, it MIGHT be a building worth saving. I’d like to see a living building there the next time I come to town and not another lost landmark.

Jefferson School photo gallery

Here is a gallery of what I have to admit are some pretty disheartening photographs. Click on any image to make it larger, then click on the left or right side to move through the gallery.