On behalf of Selma High, the Clarion staff would like to give a warm welcome to new staff on campus. This includes our brand new Choral Music Director, Mr. Bailey. He is the choir director at SHS as well as at the Abraham Lincoln Middle School.
Mr. Bailey didn’t spend his high school year as a “choir kid,” ironically. His journey into the world of music began while he was in college.
“I did it by accident to be honest,” said Mr. Bailey. “I went to college to be an english major and when I walked onto campus they were starting a new choir that needed more male singers.”
The choir teacher has pulled him into his office after he passed by this group and asked if had ever sung before or been part of an activity like choir. The answer was no.
“He had me sing and do some music tests. Then he offered me 3,000 dollars so of course I said yes,” Mr. Bailey laughed as he recalled his experience.
Although he had been a rookie at the time, he ended up sticking with a few music classes and voice lessons throughout college that led to him getting his master’s degree in the musical arts.
“I figured it would be something I wouldn’t do anymore but I got a call from a school district asking if I wanted to fill in a position,” he explained. “I thought that was going to be it too, but I loved it.”
After this, he was encouraged by colleges to apply full time, and although he hadn’t gotten a credential to teach, he decided to take the new job while getting his credential.
His favorite part of his job is, in his own words,” definitly not the paperwork.”
“I enjoy people and I love seeing people excited. I like seeing people discover things ,and choir is all about people discovering new things about their voices and growing,” Mr. Bailey excitedly described this part of his job. “You can teach more than just choir in a choir class.”
Mr. Bailey has a set of goals for the choral programs throughout the district.
“We’ve got to say we need stuff and then we will get stuff,” Mr. Bailey said motioning to the brand new risers he used the budget given to him to purchase. They are more modern and replaced the older version the room once had.
He believes the growth of the program begins with the elementary schools, and that leads to middle and high school programs growing and becoming much stronger. This involves getting directors for the elementary schools to build a music program for the younger students in our district.
Mr. Bailey said the size of the program across the district has much more room to grow.
“The huge goal,”he said,”has a billion steps to get to, is that this school has a healthy sized program and that means ten percent of the kids here should be in and out of the choir room.”
He hopes the program will expand and be no less than any other school in the valley in size or quality, so the students get the musical experience they deserve from an arts program.
“Every choir director looks forward to the end of the first year,” he laughed and explained. “The first year is me trying to make sense of things.”
He also wants the students of Selma High to know that the program is a place to make bonds and it’s fun to be apart of.
“It’s a cool place to be a part of so you can learn about yourself and other people.”
Mr. Bailey’s plans for the program show the dedication he has to our campus and district, so don’t forget to give a warm welcome, Selma High.