CLAYTON — George Caras, principal of Northmont High School, was recognized by the City of Clayton at last Thursday’s council meeting for making a difference in the lives of the students at the high school.
“Since the country will be celebrating ‘Make a Difference Day’ on October 24 I thought that tonight would be the perfect time to honor a person who has made such a difference in the lives of many of our Northmont students,” said Mayor Joyce Deitering, who presented Caras with a proclamation.
She also shared some letters sent to Caras by students.
One students wrote, “Mr. Caras, in a paper I compared you to George Washington. Both show strong leadership, loyalty and kindness to those that they lead. This loyalty is very important and appreciated. Both Washington and you choose to do what is best for the people, and you are kind while doing it.”
Another letter concluded by saying, “My point is really that I want to thank you for listening. I’m lucky to have a principal like you. You really care about us. I have grown a lot since our talk and I can’t wait for our next conversation. I promise I will be nicer.”
Deitering noted that Caras is a man of his word.
“Just ask the high school baseball team,” she said. “When the team was in contention for the championship George encouraged them by promising that if the team made it to state playoffs he would cut his hair into a Mohawk. The team made it to state and George cut his hair and even colored it green and white.”
With these stories as the background, Deitering read the text of the proclamation.
“Whereas strong secondary education strengthens communities, addresses vital societal concerns and enhances the quality of life for all citizens, and whereas George Caras has served as principal at Northmont high School since 2008 overseeing 1,400 students and acting with the highest integrity to ensure that each students is treated with fairness and equity.
Whereas George Caras has shepherded the development of annual ‘Unity Day’ program which weaves the diversity of all high school freshmen into the unique fabric of Northmont, a program that has been deemed simply magic by legendary coaching and character educator Jim Place, and whereas George Caras has created an atmosphere of academic excellence, ambition and desire to succeed which has enabled the Northmont Academic Challenge Team to be the first high school team in the state to win three concurrent state championships, a national championship for the junior varsity level and enabled the varsity team to defeat over 40 college teams on the way to a Top 10 national ranking.
And whereas George Caras has assisted the more vulnerable students by partnering with the curriculum and instruction department and special education supervisor to identify and implement a reading program for students with significant reading deficiencies, allowing the participating students to gain an average of almost two years growth per year as a result.
In addition, George Caras has introduced a type of class with a goal to enable all Northmont High School graduates to enter the college ranks without having to take any remedial math or English classes, greatly increasing the students’ likelihood of graduating from college.”
The proclamation detailed other programs Caras played a vital role in helping to develop.
Deitering concluded by saying, “Now therefor, I, Joyce Deitering, mayor of the city of Clayton, Ohio, recognize the hard work and dedication of Northmont high School Principal George Caras and express the gratitude of the community for his achievement of these major accomplishments while adhering to the highest ethical standards. On behalf of the elected and appointed officials of the city, I hereby offer my sincerest congratulations and wish you continued success.”
When asked how it felt to receive recognition for his efforts, Caras stated, “It’s special because there are some incredible people in this community. For the them to recognize, not me, but what we’ve done at the high school is really, really special and I appreciate that.”
Reach Ron Nunnari at 684-9124, via email Rnunnari@civitasmedia.com or on Twitter @Englewood_Ind