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George Pratt, CBHS ’65, long-time CBHS Dean of Students, passes away

George Pratt, CBHS ’65, long-time CBHS Dean of Students, passes away

Please pray for the repose of the soul of George J. Pratt, Jr., Dean Emeritus of Christian Brothers High School, who passed away January 2 at the age of 70. A 1965 CBHS graduate, he served as Dean of Students for Christian Brothers High School for more than 46 years.

A Memorial Mass for George Pratt will be celebrated on Friday, January 5, 9:00 a.m. by Msgr. John McArthur in the CBHS gymnasium. Students and faculty will attend this Mass and alumni, parents, and families are welcome to attend.

A visitation will be held on Friday, January 5, from 5:00 - 7:00 p.m. at St. Louis Church, 203 S. White Station Road. The funeral Mass will be celebrated on Saturday, January 6, 11:00 a.m. at St. Louis Church. Private burial will follow. A reception will be held at Christian Brothers High School Heffernan Hall following the funeral.

Below is a brief biography of Dean Pratt, comprised from Purple and Gold article published in June 2017.

BIOGRAPHY OF GEORGE J. PRATT ‘65
FOUNDER’S AWARD FOR COMMITMENT TO QUALITY EDUCATION
AFTER FOUR DECADES AT CBHS, GEORGE PRATT CONTINUES TO SHAPE BOYS INTO MEN

His commitment to quality education has impacted generations of Brothers’ Boys and their families, advancing the Lasallian mission throughout the MidSouth. The tremendous quality of our CBHS graduates through the years, namely loyalty, dedication, and generosity, have helped our school stay so strong and continue to advance.

For more than 45 years, George Pratt has walked the hallways of Christian Brothers High School, first as teacher and coach and the latter half as the Dean of Students. If something had to do with college visits, discipline, drug testing, fines, lockers, lost and found, truancy, and Saturday School, then chances are, Dean Pratt was involved.

Pratt, a Brothers’ Boy who graduated from CBHS in 1965, graduated from Memphis State University in 1970 and began teaching at the high school. He later received a Master of Education degree from Memphis. Asked why he chose to teach here, Pratt replied that “as a graduate, I wanted to teach and coach here. I wanted to coach for Tom Nix. And I enjoyed working with young people.”

Algebra I, Algebra II, Geometry, and Math Survey were the subjects Pratt taught during the first half of his tenure at CBHS. He also coached freshman football and baseball, junior varsity basketball and varsity football. Since the ’87-88 school year, he has served as Dean of Students. Pratt was named Dean Emeritus prior to the 2017-18 school year.

Pratt was born in Palestine, Texas on June 15, 1947 and moved to Memphis in 1959. He attended St. Thomas for the second semester of 7th grade and graduated from Immaculate Conception Elementary. His parents were from Memphis and wanted their three sons to attend CBHS. Thus, George graduated from CBHS in 1965 followed by his two brothers, Dr. Tom Pratt ’67 and Malcolm Pratt ’69. George’s father George J. Pratt, Sr. graduated from CBHS in 1936.

He received his BS in Education and Master of Education from Memphis State. The longest tenured of all current CBHS faculty, George served at Christian Brothers High School for more than 46 years - since 1970 as math teacher and coach and since 1987 as Dean of Students. George has been married to his wife Anne for 47 years. They have three children, Chris (CBHS ’91), Michael (CBHS ’93), and Dana (St. Agnes ’99) and eight grandchildren.

Pratt has many thoughts and recollections during his tenure here.

“There are many happy memories here over the years,” he said. “I find that I really enjoy it when the children of students I taught and/or coached come back. One of my nicest highlights has always been the 1977 state championship football team, of which I was a member of the coaching staff. Many of their children have come through or are currently here.”
He has noticed many changes in the last four decades including tremendous improvements in the facilities and technology. “Everything is better,” said Pratt. “The campus has continually grown and improved.”

“The number one question asked me when I see graduates is, ‘when am I retiring’?” said Pratt. “I plan on being here for a few more years. However, the end of the road is drawing closer. It probably depends on how long Brother Chris is willing to keep me here and put up with me.”

Pratt speaks fondly of the thousands of CBHS graduates who have passed through the school during the past three decades.

“I always try to find our grads whenever I need something or need them for personal business,” explained Pratt. “Their tremendous loyalty, dedication and generosity to CBHS have helped make our school stay so strong and continue to advance (e.g., board of directors, alumni association, endowment fund). I always enjoy running into our graduates. You can hardly go anywhere in this city without seeing our grads.”

His commitment to quality education has impacted generations of Brothers’ Boys and their families, advancing the Lasallian mission throughout the Midsouth.

“The tremendous quality of our CBHS graduates through the years, namely loyalty, dedication, and generosity, have helped our school stay so strong and continue to advance,” said Br. Chris Englert, FSC, CBHS president, at the April 6, 2017 Lasallian Founder’s Award dinner where Brother Chris also spoke to the audience about the Lasallian mission and about Pratt’s lifelong commitment to quality education. “George has always focused on the development of the whole person. The students, when asked, told me that they don’t fear Dean Pratt but, rather, respect him and don’t want to disappoint him.”

Brother Chris also announced that the annual alumni golf tournament, now in its 40th year, will now be known as the “George Pratt Alumni Golf Tournament.” A Lasallian-themed dinner followed the award presentation.

Christian Brothers High School has been such a large part of my life, truly my second love,” said Pratt. “Over my many years here, I have witnessed the unbelievable efforts that the teachers, coaches, guidance department, support staff and administration have all made to ensure that CBHS was, is and will continue to be the best school in the Midsouth. This place is awesome. I have always said that Christian Brothers is by far, the best place to send any young man. I always remind our students to never take CBHS for granted, for they are very fortunate to go to school here.”