With the concurrence of the Board of Trustees, Brother President James Butler, FSC has appointed James E. Fyke to succeed Michael A. O’Toole ’68 as principal of La Salle College High School in late June of 2021. Following an extensive nationwide search that began almost a year ago, Mr. Fyke will become the school’s fifth lay principal.
“I first became acquainted with Jim Fyke when he was still fairly new to the La Salle College High School faculty and was selected for the Lasallian Leadership Institute. That selection proved prophetic as the story of Jim’s career with us at La Salle is one of progressive responsibilities and growth in leadership through the faithful exercise of those responsibilities. Jim is a man of authentic strong faith, a faith that is deeply private but which all his actions point to and express. Jim has made the Lasallian Mission his own and is conscious of its calling in any given situation to advantage the least advantaged. Jim’s whole career and recent responsibilities at La Salle highlight the sacred vocation of the classroom teacher, and I am so thrilled to have heard and read the evaluations of so many of his colleagues that begin with the phrase, ‘he is a good teacher.’ A good man, a good teacher, and an able administrator, an adopted son of La Salle who deeply loves this school, Jim Fyke is a man who is fully able and ready to carry on with the legacy of excellence and creativity Mike O’Toole ’68 leaves him, able and ready to continue the tradition of lay leadership at La Salle begun by Dave Diehl ’55 – whose own path to this role of principal Jim has in so many ways followed over three decades later.”
Brother James L. Butler, FSC
Mr. Fyke has been a member of the faculty and administration of La Salle College High School since 2001. He served as Director/Principal of the school’s Saint Katharine Drexel Program from 2004-2017 and led a coeducational preparatory program to serve 7th and 8th grade students who live in the city of Philadelphia or are students of diversity. In 2007, he was named Dean of Students (subsequently Dean of Student Affairs) and was responsible for overseeing student life, safety and security, transportation, clubs and activities, health services, and budget management. During his tenure as dean, Mr. Fyke implemented new safety and security protocols, spearheaded student leadership initiatives, and established a freshman orientation and induction program. In 2008, he developed and implemented a character development program that is dear to his heart. The four-year experience delivers appropriate lessons, discussions, readings, presentations, reflections, retreats, assemblies, and one-on-one conversations. Students are not told what to think or how to think; rather, they are challenged to think for themselves.
In 2019, Mr. Fyke resumed his role as a full-time member of the Science Department where he has taught numerous courses including Integrated Science, Environmental Science, Astronomy, Zoology, and Biology. He is responsible for the design and implementation of the school’s Environmental Science and Astronomy curriculum as well as the development of the AP Environmental Science curriculum, which subsequently received approval from the College Board.
Mr. Fyke holds a B.A. and M.A. from Arcadia University and a M.A. in Education from Saint Joseph’s University, where he was a Maguire Educational Leadership Fellow. He has served on a number of committees at the school and is graduate of the Lasallian Leadership Institute. Mr. Fyke fosters an understanding of and appreciation for the life and teachings of Saint John Baptist de La Salle and has a deep commitment to Lasallian education and the mission of La Salle College High School. He has participated in several service initiatives at the school, including Freshman Branch Out Day and Urban Immersion. He was a frequent visitor to Kairos retreats and has coached hockey, basketball, and lacrosse.
“Jim always displays humility yet at the same time the students always show him great respect. He will be a wonderful principal and has my full support.”
Joseph F. Hartnett ’69
Chair, Board of Trustees
Originally from Northeast Philadelphia, Mr. Fyke and his wife, Abbie, reside in Delran, NJ with their two daughters.
“Working closely with Jim Fyke over the past decade, I have been fortunate to see at close range his keen dedication to La Salle, its people and to the full scope of Lasallian education. His dedication is matched by a strong capacity for personal growth and I look forward to his work as Principal of an institution that has been so important in my own life and in the lives of so many teachers, students, parents and alumni.”
Michael A. O’Toole ’68