MOUNT VERNON, N.Y. -- Mount Vernon High School principal Ron Gonzalez’s philosophy of “yelling praise and whispering criticism” has, his colleagues say, not only helped students succeed and gotten the community more involved in education, it has now earned him recognition from his peers.
Gonzalez was named recently by The Empire State Supervisors and Administrators Association as its “Region 2 Outstanding Administrator of the Year.”
Ceremonies honoring Gonzalez, and top administrators from around the state, were held Friday, June 17, in Saratoga Springs.
Each year, the statewide professional organization of principals, supervisors and school leaders picks someone for the top accolade from each of its seven regions.
Region 2 represents schools throughout Westchester County and includes hundreds of administrators.
Gonzalez was singled out for the ways he has helped to improve the culture and climate at Mount Vernon High School over the past five years.
Nominated by the school’s administrators and staff, he has been making a difference in the lives of Mount Vernon’s students by extolling student successes and quietly guiding them when they stumble.
Gonzalez’s efforts to bring stability to the high-needs school was reflected by the state Education Department’s recognition of a significant increase in its on-time graduation rates.
He is also credited with spearheading the concept of “academic risk taking,” which has fostered an atmosphere of success that spread to the community at large, the association said.
Under Gonzalez’s watch, members of the school community were empowered to “take ownership in student achievement,” the association said.
Students’ successes were celebrated and their voices were heard due to the principal’s efforts, it added.