DeKalb middle school music teacher earns Wirtz Award for Excellence in Education

Out of a pool of seven nominees, Gregory King top pick for districtwide honor

Clinton Rosette Middle School choir director Gregory King gives remarks at the May 7, 2024, meeting of the DeKalb School District 428 board.

DeKALB – A DeKalb middle school music teacher this week was recognized by DeKalb School District 428 for earning the Wirtz Award for Excellence in Education.

The DeKalb school board showered Gregory King with praise during its meeting Tuesday. King is choir director at Clinton Rosette Middle School in DeKalb.

King gave kudos to everyone who was nominated for the award, saying it means a lot to him to receive this recognition.

“I wish that every teacher could have the feeling of appreciation and joy that I felt when I received this,” King said. “Education is a selfless job. The nominees that are up here are all worthy of this award.”

The Wirtz Award is a districtwide honor bestowed annually to an educator who demonstrates innovation, a love for students and goes above and beyond.

According to a social media announcement from the DeKalb Education Foundation, which administers the award, King’s recommendation letters from teachers, students and graduates pointed to his teaching skills and highlighted positive relationships he has with his students.

Recipients of the Wirtz Award are all nominated by a peer. Each nominee has letters of support written by teachers, administrators, and students and their families.

Nominees for the award included Sarah Haughee, Cherish Jackson, Michael Lofthouse, Samantha Peters, Amy Russell and Rhonda Schultz.

DeKalb Education Foundation President Cindy Lofthouse said it’s been a wonderful year for the Wirtz Award.

“This year it was just an awesome group of people that were nominated,” Lofthouse said. “The letters of support were unbelievable. There was one that was written that I just cried over.”

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