Frank Charles Winstead is passionate about teaching. He considers it the most important job in the world – the profession that makes all of the other professions possible. Furthermore, public education provides for many children their only opportunity to realize their hopes. For these students, the schoolhouse becomes the bridge to a dream.

Today, many children live in poverty. They come to the schoolhouse every day from dysfunctional families in deteriorating neighborhoods. And they come, as Jim Trelease has expressed it, “in search of more than reading and math skills. They are looking for a light in the darkness of their lives, a Good Samaritan who will stop and bandage a bruised heart or ego.”

While it is essential to keep the main thing the main thing at the schoolhouse - student learning, teaching entails much more than dispensing knowledge. In Winstead's office, there is a framed display of the cover of the May, 1987, Middle School Journal and the editor’s column “As I See It” entitled “Wayside Teaching.” In it, Editor John H. Lounsbury defines wayside teaching as “the teaching that is done between classes, when walking in the halls, after school, and in dozens of one-on-one encounters, however brief.” And he claims, “When all is said and done, what is said informally and casually may have more impact on a person’s behavior than what is said while formally instructing a class. . . . It is in the relationships developed in wayside teaching that one is most likely to influence the lives of others.”

This concept captured much of Winstead’s philosophy and he has used it as a focus of one of his most popular presentations, “Wayside Teaching in a Place Called School.” This talk also acknowledges another of his mentors, John Goodlad. When Winstead speaks, he weaves into his presentation anecdotes and stories about the teachers in his personal “Hall of Fame.” This makes his message real, relevant, and engaging. Frank Winstead entertains, but he is not an entertainer; rather, he is a gifted teacher and communicator whose messages are genuine, powerful, uplifting, often poignant.

Frank Winstead completed thirty-one years of service in public education in Georgia. He was a classroom teacher at the elementary, junior high, and high school levels. He was on the staff at West Georgia College for two years in the Department of Educational Media, where he designed and produced teaching materials for faculty members and taught media production classes. He was a middle school principal for 5 years and served for 16 years as the director of Educational Media in DeKalb County, Georgia, the largest school district in the state. Winstead retired in 1994 to devote full time to speaking and writing.

Click here to download Frank Charles Winstead's resume. (127K PDF)

There is no more noble occupation in the world than to assist another human being — to help someone succeed.

Alan Loy McGinnis


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