Serving Clovis, Portales and the Surrounding Communities

Yearbook to remember

Staff writer

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For Portales resident Clayton Barber, a pair of photos published in the 2014 Portales High School yearbook have crossed the line of good taste.

Barber, who has a daughter attending Portales Junior High, said the new “Most Likely to Skinny Dip” award in the PHS yearbook shouldn’t have made it to print.

Photos feature two 2014 PHS seniors posing as if they are nude behind a tree on the high school’s campus.

“If I had a photo like that on my person, criminal charges could be brought against me,” Barber said. “To have it in a yearbook is questionable.”

“I would be very upset if that was my daughter,” Barber added.

Johnnie Cain, Portales Municipal Schools superintendent, said the administration was unaware of the photo until last week when the yearbooks were distributed to students and parents.

Cain said the “Most Likely to Skinny Dip” photos are the first time anything like that has been published in the yearbook as far as he knows.

“Sometimes something gets by that you regret,” Cain said. “We are going to add an extra layer of editorial review to make sure this does not happen again. We want the yearbook to represent the positive things about the school year.”

Cain said the PMS administration has held meetings on how to deal with the yearbook photo issue and plans on having at least one more internal meeting during the week to get the ordeal sorted and figured out.

“No one did this with the intent to hurt anybody. At the time I’m sure it was just a cute idea to put in the yearbook,” Cain said.

Dodi Eakins, the teacher in charge of the PHS yearbook and its staff, declined to comment on the yearbook photos during a Thursday afternoon phone call.

Matthew Shelly, one of the two PHS seniors chosen as “Most Likely to Skinny Dip,” said he has never skinny dipped in his life.

“I didn’t know it was a big deal until I saw that people were upset on Facebook,” said Shelly, now a freshman at Eastern New Mexico University.

Shelly said he understands how people could view the photos as inappropriate, but said he doesn’t think his photo was anything over the line.

“I didn’t have my clothes off for the photo. I was wearing a sleeveless shirt the whole time,” Shelly said.

Shelly said his photo for the “Most Likely to Skinny Dip” award was not taken at the same time as the female award winner.

— Staff writer Lillian Bowe

contributed to this report