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Students sing praises of chorus teacher

By By Georgia E. Frye / staff writer
Sept. 25, 2003
Magnolia Middle School seventh-grader Ashley Ott said when she is old and gray her chorus teacher probably still will be at work.
Wayne Whitehead, who teaches at Carver and Magnolia middle schools, recently received a plaque from the Meridian School Board commemorating the 30 years he worked without missing a day.
Whitehead's fellow teachers at Magnolia Middle School also threw a party in his honor Wednesday.
Whitehead said diligence and dedication to the students are the reasons why he never misses a day of work. He also said he feels blessed with good health.
Whitehead said he never missed a day of school when he was a student and he has never missed church, either. He also said he makes it a point to always be on time.
In addition to teaching chorus at Carver and Magnolia middle schools, Whitehead is also involved with music at two churches New Era Baptist Church and El Bethel Baptist Church.
Another Magnolia Middle School student, Frederica Lanier, said she thinks it would be easy to do what Whitehead has done.
Whitehead said he believes getting kids involved in singing helps them in other subjects and helps them feel good about themselves.
Sixth-grader Anostacizia White said chorus is her favorite class because of Whitehead.
But the students aren't the only ones singing his praises.
Autry also said that no other teacher in the Meridian Public School district has an attendance record like Whitehead.
Whitehead's students agree that he is one of those teachers students remember throughout their lives. His students call him kind, funny and most importantly, he cares.