Carl J. Young as Teacher at Lance Jr. High School

In 1969, Carl retired from his job as Principal of McKinley and took a new job teaching English at Lance. The entire staff at McKinley signed a petition asking him to reconsider his resignation, but he had made up his mind long before that this job would be temporary.

For many students, the end of classes is a time for celebration, and they sometimes count down the last days before summer vacation. For Carl, returning to the classroom was cause for rejoicing. He felt he had accomplished all he could as an administrator and had done his best to bring his home town school system through what may have been its most difficult period. In this, he had found satisfactions similar to those of an Army chaplain. It was not a job he liked, but one that needed to be done for the betterment of all concerned. He also saw that his ideas and resources were finite and that although many of the problems he sought to redress were not completely solved, it was time for a younger generation with new perspectives to take over the work he had begun.

He had developed a sense of balance in his life. In education, as in many fields, administration is essential, and nothing works without it. But if you don't pay attention to the needs of individual students in the classroom, administration doesn't mean much. Having devoted a decade to duty and responsibility, it was time to do something he liked.

When people hear interesting news, they often have a hard time keeping it to themselves, but want to rush out and tell everyone. Carl had found some of the best of news reading books from the West Branch Library with his father when he was a child. Junior High School Classes were something like newsrooms for him. He had preached the Gospel or Good News of the spirit. In the classroom, he could give his students the good news of what they could accomplish through learning. He could also receive the good news of new generations who could make better lives for themselves and those around them if they had the abilities to do so. He liked finding untapped potential in students and doing whatever he could to bring it out.

Changing jobs meant a drastic cut in pay and civic prominence, but he was glad to give these up in order to go back to the job he loved most, after having taken care of his responsibilities as an administrator.

At the time of his retirement from this, his final job, in 1981, A. Bisciglia, one of his former students at Lincoln who had gone on to administration at Lance, wrote:

Mr. Young's greatest strength, besides his knowledge of his subject, was his concern for his students. He cared about each and every one of us. He was tough and demanding, but he was really kind and truly fair.

One day he came up to me and handed me a notice for a school play. "Why don't you try out? I think you would do a good job in it." That was all the encouragement I needed. The next thing I knew the lead role in the play was mine"...

The years have come and gone. In teaching, we measure a lifetime in students and that was about 4,500 students ago. In between, Mr. Young served as Principal of McKinley Junior High. However, his first choice was still teaching and Lance students were lucky to have him transfer to Lance.

Five years ago, my rookie year at Lance, was a time to meet many new educators and to renew some old friendships. It wasn't long before Mr. Young, a "teacher's teacher" became a "principal's teacher." His sage advice, calm disposition, warm smile and tremendous insight was something very special to me.



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