Meet Our Principal

Dr. Carl B. Wagner

Carl's Pic

I am sincerely very happy to be the principal for Holy Cross Catholic School.  I have attended Catholic schools for K-12 and Catholic university at the University of Detroit for my B.A. and M.A. in English and history and Education.  I began my teaching career in Catholic schools first at Epiphany parish in Detroit and then at Bishop Foley in Madison  Heights.   I eventually moved to Anchor Bay first as a middle school teacher for ten years and then as a high school teacher and eventually assistant principal for another ten years.  After earning my doctorate in Educational Leadership from Western Michigan University, I moved to Livonia to become a middle school principal for eight more years.    I retired from the public school system and after forty-five minutes began a new phase as an assistant professor of education at Marygrove College in Detroit.  I have continued as an adjunct with Marygrove even when I moved to become a Dean of Developmental Education for Baker College Online.

I was asked to return to public schools as a “turnaround principal” for schools that were considered “priority” schools by the state. This involved two, three-year contracts first at Madison High School and then at New Haven High School. In both of these schools our team made AYP in my second and third years.  In both, my replacements were teachers that I mentored into their principalships.   More recently I have been teaching online in the Masters in Education programs for Marygrove, Baker, and Grand Canyon University.

I very much believe in the Christ-centered framework for Catholic education and the commitment to teach the Whole Child in partnership with parents. The open and honest infusion of faith and Jesus into every course is a foundation that can prepare our students for both a rich academic life but even more importantly for a moral and ethical life empowering them to make good choices and become leaders in the world who are recognized for the fullness of their integrity and sound moral judgments.   Although it is obvious that most parents are making significant sacrifices to be able to afford the advantages of having their child educated in a Catholic school, the value of the sound infusion of ethics and faith into the study of academics and the development of character is priceless.  One can readily see in our examples in political areas and some business areas that not every adult learned how to make ethical, morally sound choices, but Holy Cross Catholic School is preparing our students for exactly this kind of faith-based, moral and ethical decision making in life.

On a personal level, I have been married to my wife, Marilyn, for forty-nine years. We met at the University of Detroit in graduate school and returned to her home in Trinidad to be married at her home parish.  We have four adult children and three grand children.   My mother was actually baptized here at Holy Cross church and my parents were also married here.  My uncle owned a farm on Plank Road and when our parents passed away, my four older brothers all went to live with his family.  I, however, went to Detroit to my paternal grandmother.  Two of my brothers and one sister-in-law attended Holy Cross.   I sometimes visited them and have been “attached” to Marine City for most of my life.   I have always loved the sense of community and the friendliness of people in this town.  Thank you to the entire community for welcoming me here.