Bruce Karam, Superintendent of the Utica City School District has been a
lifelong resident of the City of Utica, New York. He was educated in the Utica School system before
graduating from Notre Dame High School. Astute in business, he attended Utica College
of Syracuse University where he earned a Bachelor of Science Degree in
Accounting. He then received his
Master’s Degree in Business Administration.
While at Utica College, Mr. Karam was named to the Dean’s List and was a
member of the International Economics Honor Society, Omicron Delta Epsilon.
several successful years in the accounting field, he had a desire to serve the
youth of our community and obtained a Master’s Degree in Education from the
College of St. Rose. His love of
teaching and the enjoyment that he received from working with students led him
to pursue a Certificate of Advanced Study (CAS) in Educational Administration from
the State University of New York at Cortland.
Karam was hired by the Utica City School District where he spent several rewarding
years as a teacher. Several years later,
he began his administrative tenure in the Utica City School District as an
Assistant Principal; and served in this capacity at the Junior High level and
also at Thomas R. Proctor High School. While
at Proctor High School in the mid-1990’s, he was one of the first district
administrators to oversee the Night School Program; an innovative approach
designed to keep at-risk students in school.
During this time, Mr. Karam also served as Summer School Principal for
1996 Mr. Karam was appointed principal of John F. Kennedy Middle School in North
Utica where he served as principal for ten years. It was during this assignment that he
encountered some of the most rewarding experiences of his professional career. Under Mr. Karam’s leadership, John F. Kennedy
Middle School quickly earned its place on the New York State Education
Department’s list of most improved and high performing schools. The
school also earned recognition from the New York State School Board’s
Association as one of the top Middle Schools in New York State.
2003, John F. Kennedy Middle School was selected by the United States
Department of Education as a National Blue Ribbon School; an honor bestowed on
only the highest performing schools throughout the nation. The Blue Ribbon Award earned by the school
while under Mr. Karam’s leadership, designated John F. Kennedy Middle School as
a national model for academic excellence and set it apart from other
this time, the United States Department of Education sponsored a case study conducted
by the University of Texas to research and publish best practices being used in
high performing schools. Their study cited John F. Kennedy Middle
School as a model for best practices and the study was published to assist
other middle schools nationwide. John F. Kennedy Middle School’s achievements while
under Mr. Karam’s guidance were featured in a television documentary which aired
across the nation in November of 2004.
tremendous achievements were largely due to the high standards and expectations
that Mr. Karam set for himself, his students, and his staff. He believed then, and continues to believe
now, that the youth of this community are our greatest asset and that they deserve
our best efforts.
Karam’s hard work, dedication, and proven results at John F. Kennedy Middle
School earned him the 2006 New York State Middle School Principal of the Year Award
from the School Administrators Association of New York State and the National
Association of Secondary School Principals.
2007, Mr. Karam was promoted to the Director of Secondary Education for the
Utica City School District where he used his expertise to affect many positive
changes in the operation of Proctor High School and also at the two middle
schools. Mr. Karam then became Superintendent
of Schools for the Utica City School District in 2011.
becoming Superintendent of Schools, Mr. Karam has worked tirelessly with the
Board of Education to successfully steer the district through some of the most
challenging times in its history due to very difficult financial conditions and
the historical educational reforms that are happening at the state and national
Superintendent, he has worked vigorously with our local government and
education officials to fight for the additional state aid that our students deserve
and that they are entitled to receive.
He has also worked diligently to oversee the implementation of major
educational reform initiatives district-wide including the new Common Core
Learning Standards and a new Annual Professional Performance Review system for
teachers and principals; initiatives that are designed to further enhance
teaching and learning in all of our schools across the district.
Karam has proudly served the Utica City School District and our children for
over 25 years including 21 years as an administrator. In addition to his many degrees, Mr. Karam
has received numerous awards and honors.
In 2003, he earned the United States Department of Education No Child
Left Behind National Blue Ribbon Award; the United States Congressional Certificate
of Special Recognition and Achievement; the New York State Assembly Certificate
of Special Recognition for High Achievement; and the State University of New
York Institute of Technology Alumni Humanitarian of the Year Award. In 2006, Mr. Karam earned the New York State
Middle School Principal of the Year Award.
Mr. Karam was also honored five consecutive years; from 1999-2003 by the New York State School Boards Association and the Business Council of New York State for fostering high achievement and outstanding educational improvement at John F. Kennedy Middle School.
In addition to these significant accomplishments, Mr. Karam has earned two honors from the Utica City School District Board of Education including Educator of the Month and the Distinguished Service Award. Also, Mr. Karam currently serves on the Mohawk Valley Community College Board of Trustees.