Mr. Johnson has been apart of an administrative team for 18 years but has been an educator for 27 years. He started out teaching 7th and 8th grade science for 8 years before he became principle at the middle school for 9 years and 5 years here at Evans. His motivation for becoming principle was because he loves helping people (both the students and the teachers), performing a service, and because he enjoys what he is doing and the rewarding experience.
Mr. Johnson’s favorite memories from his own experiences in high school are the pep rallies and the dances ( then known as “hops”). He liked to go from the football games to the Ho[s and watch all the dance moves that everyone has prepared, he even prepared a few of his own. It was these social aspects that he loved the most. When we asked if he preferred public or private school since he enjoys a social atmosphere, he said that he spent up to 7th grade in private school and 8th-12th in public as he begged to be allowed to (his main reason being that he didn’t like to wear the uniform. Our principle did comment that public schools are bigger and offer more for the students.
One thing Mr. Johnson would like to tell everyone is to pick your friends wisely and be careful of the things you do at a young age as this is when you start to form your personality. In this day, it is easier to get in trouble than it was before we had access to phones and people were quicker to trust others and neighborhoods took care of each other like when he was a kid. Now, you have to watch who your trust and be careful about what they may say or do.
Mr. Johnson expressed that the diversity of Evans is his favorite thing about our school. He likes that everyone of all backgrounds, cultures, beliefs, and ethnicity come together to study. Each person has a different walk of life that comes with a different point of view than you and there is a diverse number of electives, opportunities, and pathways (for example Cyber, Pre-Ap, Capstone) to better aid the diverse interests from those students.
One topic that has captivated the school this year are the use of badges that everyone, both faculty and staff and students) must wear. Our principle has expressed his view on the badges as he also wears one. He, himself, does not necessarily like the idea of wearing them, but he does understand why they are important. The badges are to help those who are familiar with others in the school to know each other as not everyone knows everyone else, even among the teachers that are still people who have not talked to other teachers.
Many may be curious about Mr. Johnson’s fashion choice of sweater vests, and we have the answer to that curiosity. Our principle has been a sharp dresser, he believes, since he was young. He particularly liked sweater vests because he didn’t feel like they were jackets, which he disliked wearing. So when he put on a sweater vest, they felt like a jacket without being a jacket that he did not want to wear. There was the added bonus that it could be both a dressy but over the top dressy apparel, so he could wear it to church and then go out for a casual activity like golfing without having to change his vest.
There are many changes that happen everyday and our school is no different. Mr. Johnson has seen both the negative and positive changes that have occurred in our school. Some of the positives he listed were that we grew to be more academically stable and strong based on curriculum and pathways, our test scores and graduation have increased each year (with the teachers and staff playing a role in the increase), and our spirits have increased, with student council doing well in continuing to grow school spirit with in the students. The other side to these positives is the increase in kids taking risks with things that they shouldn’t that must be removed.
Mr. Johnson believes that clubs and out of school activities help with studying as long as they are the right clubs, people, message that keeps students motivated and growing.
Mr. Johnson believes that is it good for students to look to the future, like the entrepreneurship class is doing third year, to see where they want to be and what they want to do. He once met a student that was from Columbia County who was working as a doctor that inspired him. Because of this he loves to see the Entrepreneurship students fail as it provides a way for them to grow and gives them a chance to keep tinkering with business, and it can help them deal with real life situations.
When he was in school, he did not have one favorite elective but he did take engineering, welding, automotive, and construction, which he enjoyed taking. However if he could go back, he could take healthcare as he used to want to be a veterinarian but decided not to as he did not want to go to school for a long time. Now, as a principal, he enjoys all of the electives as he sees how they are important for someone.