Creekside Band Director Honored for Community Impact

  • Posted 2/3/2023

    Dexter Bailey, Jr.
    Creekside band Director, Dexter Bailey, Jr.

    Dexter Bailey, Jr. asks himself two simple questions each morning: “How can I become better? How can I make the students and the people around me better daily?”

    As director of bands at Creekside High School, Bailey’s process starts with the power of music – and his mindset has led to national recognition.

    He is one of six educators nationwide to receive the Dr. William P. Foster Community Development Award. According to the Music Education Alliance, the award “honors select educators who provide strong music education experiences for their students and a positive impact on their school and community.”

    Bailey has been with Fulton County Schools (FCS) for 15 years. He says Creekside’s band program benefits students both inside and outside of the classroom.

    “Being in this community for so long, I’ve seen different families – second generation, third generation students come through here – and it’s a sense of pride that the kids have.”

    Creekside’s pride is built on a central concept – making sure students know their voices are heard, and they matter. Bailey says he works to ensure students see they are stakeholders.

    “Anybody that wants to be a part of something wants to be a part of something they feel is great,” he says. “They also want to have a vested interest in it. They want to feel like their hands are on it.”

    Bailey incorporates students in every aspect of performance and public relations development, from song selection to the logo for the band program. Seeing the results of their planning, decisions and hard work pays off and inspires Bailey as an educator.

    “Students are really, really good at figuring out what’s authentic to them,” he says. “For me in the classroom, I feel like I have no choice but to give them an authentic experience because I was there. Music made me feel like I belonged.”

    His skill as a musician and his authenticity have brought him far, but Bailey says he could not have succeeded without the administration at Creekside and FCS.

    “This award is a testament to the hard work of Fulton County Fine Arts and the support we get within our community.”


    Creekside Marching BandDexter Bailey 3Dexter Bailey 4