About Us

Principal Raymonda Shelton photograph

Raymonda Shelton



Mission: Our Cornatzer family will prepare the whole child through a rigorous learning experience to become college or career ready. 
vision: Together we create a community where we inspire creativity, spark curiosity, and ignite a passion for learning.
colors: Purple and gray
mascot: cougar
cougar picture


Assistant Principal Brittany Holland photograph

Brittany Holland

Assistant Principal

Cornatzer's Mission

Our core mission is not simply to ensure students are taught well, but to guarantee that they learn.  Cornatzer Elementary School is a place where teachers and staff view everything they do as a pledge to ensure each child’s growth and success.  Students are met at their level of need and challenged to reach new heights of learning.  Every child belongs not only to their classroom teacher, but to every person in the school.   All members join forces to coordinate strategies and respond to whatever is required.  We have a sense of ownership and know we must work together to achieve learning for all our children.  We take time to get to know our children and their families and design strategies to confirm that struggling students or those who require enrichment and challenge receive prompt additional support no matter who is their teacher.  We want to engage students in assessing their own work so they become critical thinkers and future leaders. 

Our staff also work together to review and improve our classroom practice.  Teachers meet daily to review, student work, design, and share common lessons.  We set personal goals, student achievement goals and teach our children to do the same.  Working together and with families to improve student achievement is the routine work of everyone in the school.  The deep commitment and persistence of staff make certain the success and happiness of each student.  Strong teaching requires much hard work.  Sometimes our focus on continual improvement and results requires us to revise traditional practice to find more effective strategies.  This requires personal discipline, stretching and learning together to serve our children. 

Communication and relationships with families are important.  Newsletters, progress reports, our web page, family involvement nights, PTO events, community service, open houses, e-mails, school volunteers, and connect Ed phone calls increase involvement and school connections.  We want to provide feedback to parents in an easily interpreted user-friendly format.  Each child deserves a clearly stated program tailored to their individual needs whether interventions or enrichment.  Most importantly we want to celebrate small wins.  We take pride in families at Cougar Lunches, Cougars of the Week, and positive behavior that affirms students’ gifts and creates opportunities for many winners.  We embrace a culture committed to helping children realize dreams and believe in themselves.

Cornatzer's History

In 1999 Central Davie Elementary School, which offered grades 4-5, dissolved to form a new school, and to expand Mocksville Elementary from a K-3 school to a K-5 school. District lines were redrawn and students were reassigned from Shady Grove, Mocksville and Cooleemee schools to populate the new facility. The 34-acre site was chosen because it was almost halfway between Shady Grove and Central Davie. 

A team of teachers and architects designed the school and were given the assignment to not duplicate another plan.  The Board wanted the new school to serve students with 21st century skills so two computer labs and an integrated telecommunications system were part of the design.   The gym had composition flooring to save wear and tear and enable use by the community and a four-pipe heating system balanced individual room temperatures.  
Cornatzer Elementary was completed in late July 2000, only a few days before the school year began. Classrooms were useable but construction in the cafeteria, gym and media center were not complete.  Without a kitchen, students received bag lunches for the first two weeks of school.  On September 10, the school was officially dedicated by superintendent, William Steed and Candy Poplin served as the first principal.  

Ten years later, October 12, 2010, a second ribbon cutting was the beginning of a year-long celebration in recognition of 10 years as a Decade of Excellence.   A tribute to the strong teaching force, every year since the dedication, Cornatzer has been recognized as a NC School of Growth or School of Distinction.  It currently is additionally recognized as a Achieving Reward School.