Dr. Outhouse begins first year as principal at Synergy Alternative High School

By Corey AmEnde - Staff Writer
East Hartford - posted Fri., Aug. 23, 2013
Dr. Craig Outhouse has worked in the East Hartford public schools since 2008.  P
Dr. Craig Outhouse has worked in the East Hartford public schools since 2008. Photo by Corey AmEnde.

When students walk through the doors at Synergy Alternative High School on Aug. 28, they will be greeted by a new principal – Dr. Craig Outhouse. “I'm very excited to come here and just get going with the students,” said Outhouse, who was chosen for this role from a field of more than 25 applicants.

This will be Outhouse's sixth year in East Hartford public schools. Last year he served in a dual role as assistant principal at Sunset Ridge and as the district data analyst/school improvement specialist. “In these roles, Dr. Outhouse has been a true professional of high character who works tirelessly towards solutions,” said Nathan Quesnel, superintendent of East Hartford public schools.

Outhouse started working in East Hartford public schools in 2008 as a special education teacher at Woodland Alternative School.  He became assistant principal at Woodland in 2011. He began his career in education as a special educator and alternative education teacher and facilitator in Windsor, where he worked for nine years after graduating from Syracuse with a bachelor of science degree in inclusive elementary and special education. He earned his master's in education from Harvard University and obtained his educational doctorate from the University of Massachusetts in May of 2012.

“Upon leaving Syracuse, I was offered a job in Windsor and actually had a choice to do my dream in fourth- or fifth-grade elementary ed. They had a middle school opening, a high school opening and then they had this alternative program that they were starting, so they told me a little bit about that and it sounded interesting.”

Outhouse said he has a few main goals for his first year at Synergy, which include learning the perceptions of the school from the teachers, students, staff and parents; addressing the academic rigor; working on career pathways and enhancing communication - specifically reaching out more to the alumni and parents.

“I've set a goal for myself to ensure that over the course of the year I have regular conversations with every parent in our school, and I hope our teachers and support staff follow that lead and try to reach out a little bit more,” said Outhouse. Building off the communication goal, he believes that the alumni can be a great resource for the school, and he's looking to maximize on that potential.

"We need to reach out to them and get a sense of what worked for them, what they liked and how Synergy prepared them well for their future careers," said Outhouse. 

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