Carter’s first year

Olivia Hagerty, Editor-In-Chief

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You might see him in the hallways, greeting students with a high five or smile. At sporting events, you can find him cheering on all Vikings in blue and white, and he even travelled all the way down to Springfield supporting the cheerleaders at state. He’s even seen at small family events like Grandparents Day and In-coming freshmen nights, making sure every Viking or future Viking feels welcomed into the community of Guilford.

Mr. Gus Carter, first year principal, is getting prepared to close the 2017-2018 school year after proving himself as a capable administrator. But Carter is just getting started.  Principal Carter transferred from Rockford Auburn high school last year to find himself in a whole new school community. In less than a year, he has become well connected to Guilford.

“I feel like I fit in and belong here,” said Mr. Carter. “The school spirit here is different, and I appreciate that it means something to be a Guilford Viking. You have that instant connection. There is a lot of loyalty through teachers and with families because it is a generational school, which is cool to be a part of that process.”

Something that stands out to students is Mr. Carter’s dedication to the student body and his presence at so many school events. Troy Swanson, senior, is impressed by the amount of support that Mr. Carter puts into the students and the school. After finishing in the top three in the golf conference tournament, Mr. Carter personally congratulated Swanson and took interest in his prior experiences at Guilford in the last three years.

“I love his school spirit,” said Swanson. “I think (Mr.Carter’s involvement) influences Viking pride in the students and encourages participation, which makes Guilford a fun place to be.”

Over the past several years, many privileges have been taken away from the students, such as open campus, daily announcements, and no late starts, which other local public schools took part in. With Mr. Carter’s initiatives as principal, students are now able to enjoy these amenities because he believes if the school does not treat students with respect, then the faculty won’t be able to get the desired behavior out of students.

“My philosophy in dealing with students is while we do have consequences for breaking rules, it’s better to continue to give things that show that we trust students, and the students who choose not to go by the rules we can have the privileges taken away. The code of conduct only applies to 10% of our population, so what do we have for the other 90% that are constantly following the rules?”

One of Mr. Carter’s main goals for his first year as principal is to develop relationships with the faculty, families, and students. The connection to the people in the school is something Mr. Carter believes is an impact that has been noticed because of his determination to accomplish his goal.

“I want people to know who I am and to know I am supportive,” said Mr. Carter. “If you aren’t connected, then you won’t know. It is important for me that people see that I do care about Guilford. Even though this is my first year, I feel like I am a Viking through and through.”

Mr. Carter explained that being a principal at Guilford has taught him a lot of things about himself that he never knew, especially identifying who he really is an individual. Carter wants all students to find something important to them and aid in providing the resources. He wants teachers and faculty to feel safe and comfortable, but to also to gain courage and try something different. And for all the Viking families, his goal is to increase involvement and understand what the school is trying to do.

“We have been able to move forward. I want Guilford not just to be viewed as the school kids want to come to, but people on the outside of the community see this school as an educational powerhouse. Even though this is my first year, I bleed blue.”

 

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