Kokomo Tribune; Kokomo, Indiana

November 12, 2006

Two area principals honored

Northwestern’s Seamon, Maconaquah’s Callane earn awards.

By DANIELLE RUSH

Harold Seamon may not be Northwestern High School principal this year, but he’s still being honored for his eight years of service.

Seamon, who became Northwestern assistant superintendent of support services July 1, was chosen as District 5 High School Principal of the Year by the Indiana Association of School Principals.

James Callane, Maconaquah Middle School principal, was chosen as District 5 Middle School Principal of the Year.

Seamon was Northwestern High School principal from 1998 to July 2006.

Superintendent Ryan Snoddy said Seamon was “a great building principal,” and he had to consider moving him to the corporation office.

“We were torn about moving him from the building principal to the assistant superintendent because of the outstanding job he did as principal. We also knew he would do a great job as assistant superintendent.”

Each nominee had to fill out an application, answering several questions about his or her teaching experience.

In his application, Seamon said he is especially proud of Northwestern High School’s nomination for a federal Blue Ribbon School award.

“This accomplishment is significant to me because we have worked hard with our school community to improve and maintain a culture at NHS that supports high student achievement and continuous improvement. If you examine our ISTEP scores, SAT scores and other indicators of achievement, you will see scores that are high and improving,” Seamon wrote.

Seamon went to Washington, D.C., this week to accept the school’s Blue Ribbon award.

In a recommendation letter, Northwestern teacher DelRoy Ortmann said he appreciates that Seamon is open to new ideas and works hard.

“Mr. Seamon demonstrates a tireless work ethic. His truck is parked outside the high school many evenings and weekends when everyone else has gone home,” the teacher said.

Megan Downey, a 2006 Northwestern graduate, said her principal “has set the standard of education high at Northwestern, a standard at which every teacher operates in order to provide the best education for the students.”

Callane has been Maconaquah Middle School principal since 2003, and was its assistant principal for five year before that.

He is a 1988 Kokomo High School graduate.

In his application, Callane said his goal is to promote an environment in which learning can happen, but it is fun.

“As the cultural/visionary leader in our building, I want the staff to know that we are going to work hard and also have some fun. I believe a principal can have a huge impact on the culture and climate of a building.”

Superintendent Carmine Gentile said in his recommendation letter that Callane has “shown outstanding leadership qualities” and “always seeks to solve problems in a way that results in a positive result for students. He is a learner and is always seeking to increase his knowledge base to enhance his performance.”

Eighth-grader Chloe Radel wrote that Callane is funny, and he goes to every table during lunch time and talks to the students.

“When students see Mr. Callane in the hall, he gives us high-fives and makes us feel good. He makes school fun.”

Teacher Elizabeth Resler described Callane as supportive and encouraging.

“He never questions the abilities of the teachers and support staff. He also encourages us to go beyond what we think we can do ... The kids are very responsive to his attitude, and they never see him as a negative form in the school.”

Both Seamon and Callane will be honored at the principal’s association fall professional conference Saturday. Each of the association’s 12 districts has principals of the year at the elementary, middle and high school levels. One principal from each level will be chosen as principal of the year during the conference.

District 5 includes Boone, Hamilton, Howard, Madison, Miami and Tipton counties.