Former N.S. middle school principal dies at age 48


NORTH SMITHFIELD – An educator who led North Smithfield Middle School from the time it opened in 2008 right up until he left the district earlier this year has died.

John Lahar, a resident of Mendon, Mass. died this week at the age of 48.

A Bellingham, Mass. native, Lahar attended high school at Mount Saint Charles Academy in Woonsocket, graduating in 1992. He attended Providence College, graduating in 1996.

Lahar was named principal of the 5th through 8th grade school when it first opened in 2008. In 2010, the school was recognized by the General Assembly after student test scores rose 20 percentage points in reading, the largest improvement in the state, and more than 9 percentage points in math.

Lahar’s tenure with the district ended just last month, although he left the school leadership position early this year. Supt. Michael St. Jean announced in January that the principal was retiring from the role in good standing, using a combination of vacation and sick leave to finish out his time.

Several of his colleagues from the North Smithfield School District reacted to the news this week, sharing memories on social media.

The former educator was married to Alyssa Gordon Lahar and the couple had three children.

View the formal obituary with information on services here.

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  1. This guy was my principal for only 3 years but he was so kind. This is honestly heartbreaking, fly high dude, you were a cool guy

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