SPOKANE -- A North Central High School principal made a monumental change within the last few years. Now that principal is receiving the Golden Apple Award.

Steven Gering is the first Spokane principal to win the state's highest award. North Central High School will never be the same thanks to Gering. It was a school with a dismal graduation and college bound success rate. Butthe school'sturn-around is now winning national attention.

When I first got there, only a third of our kids graduated with the classes needed to apply for a four year college, remembers Gering.

Now that number is up to 85% in four years. It's a number that has won the school two national awards.

Sometimes we bring 'em in here and say you're going to do it right now. We're not going to let you walk out of here until you finish your application for Eastern, said Gering.

The new mindset is working. Four years ago, fewer than half the students went on to any school after high school. Now 68% are college bound. Gering says he wants the best out of everyone, including junior Je'Kina Jacobs.

I was iffy about college. I thought it was too hard. But they are strict. They make you do it. I have the potential. Everyone has the potential, said Jacobs.

Even senior Klsey Earney said before Principal Gering, she thought she was not smart enough for college. Now with AP classes and tutoring, she's heading to the University of Washington.

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