Wagoner Principal Not Ready To Retire

Thursday, March 12th 2009, 9:43 pm
By: News On 6

By Craig Day, The News On 6

WAGONER, OK -- At a time when many people are losing their jobs or changing from one job to another, one northeast Oklahoma man has worked at the same place for more than a half century.  And, he impacts children every single day.

At William R. Teague Elementary in Wagoner, it's lunchtime.  There are 380 second and third graders that pack into the cafeteria.  Alongside them is Bill Teague.  The same William Teague the building is named after.

It isn't often a building is named in honor of someone still living; but then, there aren't many people like Bill Teague.

"I enjoy trying to help the boys and girls and I have a great staff," said principal Bill Teague.

At 73, Teague could have retired years ago, but each school year he returns to work.  This year is his 39th year as principal.

"You know, too many people retire and go home and sit down and in a year or two they're gone," said principal Bill Teague.

Teague's career in education began as a teacher in 1957 back when voters liked Ike.  A young man decided he liked children and now, more than a half century later, he still does.

"You have to care for those boys and girls," said principal Bill Teague.  "If you don't have children in your heart, go into something else." 

For 52 years now, the kids and the job have been in his heart.

"Every year is different.  Every day is different as far as that goes," said principal Bill Teague.

Over the years, styles may have changed, but his commitment and love of the job hasn't.

"I don't play golf and I couldn't fish every day.  And, the wife would have so many odd jobs around you know; you gotta do this or that.  I'm joking about that," laughed principal Bill Teague. 

After all, golf and fishing can't take the place of hugs, smiles, and helping a child learn.

"I like to see them growing and try to imagine what they are going to mature into someday," said principal Bill Teague.

Though some have matured and now teach for him, Teague says the kids keep him young.  He says as long as his health is good, he'll keep working and impacting the lives of children every single day.