Crossroads High School Principal J.T. Irick makes his way down the hallways greeting students in the morning rush and letting them know their attendance matters at the alternative school of choice.
Student Daniel Goodson-Pace stops his conversation with his friends to compliment Irick on his “sharp” suit.
Both the student and administrator are smiling and the conversation is easy and natural, said social studies teacher Mandi Stai.
“Mr. Irick has this type of relationship with all of the students at Crossroads. They find him to be genuinely interested in what they have going on and he also has an easy-going personality,” Stai said.
“You can tell a lot about a school principal by the way the students act around him. Because he relates to them so well, the students respect him as an administrator, while enjoying a friendly comfortable relationship.”
Irick makes it a point to be at the front door every morning when students arrive and in the afternoon when they leave.
Often, he is the first and last person they see during their school day.
“Mr. Irick has a great sense of humor. He is very dedicated in helping us reach our goals, and we feel comfortable going to him for help and advice,” Goodson-Pace said.
Irick walks into all of the classrooms on a daily basis. He is able to see what the students are working on and how they are doing.
Because of the nature of the environment at Crossroads High School, Irick is often able to speak with several students in a one-on-one conversation regarding what they are learning.
Student Janelle Holman said Irick is a valuable asset to the students and the school and one of the main reasons they are successful.
“Mr. Irick shows us every day that he cares about us. He is involved with our progress and always knows what is going on with us,” Holman said. “You don’t get that kind of care at a bigger school with a different principal.”
Irick has worked as an educator for 16 years and been the Crossroads High School principal since 2014.
He is a graduate of Copperas Cove High School.