A Conversation with Mr. Coleman: His Farewell


Central High School will undergo many changes in the next school year, and at the heart of all these changes is our own principal, Mr. Coleman. At the end of this school year, Mr. Coleman will be saying goodbye to his career as principal at CHS. In the meantime, he is moving on to an even bigger, more prominent position: superintendent. As a final farewell, the Centralian caught up with our superintendent-to-be to learn about his history as principal of CHS and to get an idea of what changes he will make as the superintendent of the school district.

Mr. Coleman has many fond memories from being the principal, but he specifically likes to reflect on the numerous sports accomplishments the students have achieved.

“Winning the state championship for girl’s basketball was a big memory, [and] watching our kids win district championship after district championship in football; just any of those days thrill me to no end.”

He also remembers many events that have impacted him in one way or another. He tells an interesting story that happened in his second or third year as principal: He was in his office when Angie suddenly called him on the radio and informed him that a fight was about to break out in the back parking lot. When he arrived at the scene of the impending fight, he saw a student standing in front of two large men. The two men (he estimated to be between the ages of 20 and 30) were the brothers of the student’s ex-girlfriend, and they were planning to beat him up as revenge for breaking their sister’s heart.

Mr. Coleman says the two men were being extremely hostile, threatening to fight him, and wouldn’t listen to anything he said. He told the men, “This is a high school; you need to go,” but the men still wouldn’t leave. Mr. Coleman and one of the men were about to get into a fight, but the cops luckily arrived just in time. The man ready to fight Mr. Coleman was arrested.

This even spurred Mr. Coleman to make an important realization. “Those children never forgot that situation, and they knew that I would always take up for them no matter what they had done and no matter what the problem was,” he says.

Mr. Coleman’s first work as superintendent will be to transform the district calendar from days-based to hours-based. This will add 25 minutes to the school day on all campuses. The high school will then have an RTI period. This will replace pass and allow students to have extra time in school to study or ask for help from teachers. This new calendar will also add a spring break and will prevent the school district from having to make up snow days.

He also says that the district will be hiring instructional leaders. “[These leaders will] lead our staff, teach our teachers to be better teachers, and [will] focus on student performance,” he says.

Additionally, there will be a new bond issue. The bond issue will increase classroom space here in the high school. “Probably in April 2019, a year from now, we’re going to ask our voters to approve a no-tax-increase bond issue to add three science classrooms onto the high school, big labs and classrooms, and move the attendance office to the back parking lot area,” says Mr. Coleman. This project will also double to size of the weight room and create a separate room dedicated to wrestling.

In regards to recent events, he adds that the high school will become a locked campus during the day with buzzer systems to make the building safer.

Overall, Mr. Coleman will focus heavily on teacher development and will develop a three-year plan to transform the Central School District into a professional learning community.

Mr. Coleman says his best piece of advice for the new principal is to listen. “Listen to what the students say, listen to what the teachers say, and listen to what the parents say. The more you listen, the more you learn about what is needed, what is not needed, what should be changed, [and] what shouldn’t be changed,” he says.

In fact, the reason he started the student advisory committee years ago was to help him to be a better listener to what students have to say.

“Make decisions and choices that are always in the best interest of the students,” he adds.

After he leaves, he doesn’t want anyone to use the phrase “Yo mama, yo daddy, or whoever you live with.” He also doesn’t want the freshmen orientation to be called “Fish Camp” anymore.

Lastly, he leaves his love for the Dallas Cowboys to the entire school.

Throughout his career as principal here at CHS, Mr. Coleman made many lasting memories and learned many important lessons, and he plans to make several significant changes as superintendent. He has been hard-working to ensure that Central High School is a high-ranking, over-achieving school, and he will do the same for the entire school district when he becomes the superintendent. Thank you to Mr. Brad Coleman for his service to Central High School.