Sheila Paulette Smith became Director of Bands at South Central Middle School when the school opened in 1989. Since that time groups under her direction have consistently been awarded superior ratings at state and national festivals, performed at the Georgia Music Educators Association In-Service Conference in 1998, and the Midwest International Band Conference in Chicago, Illinois in 2001. In 1987, Sheila received her Bachelor of Science in Music Education degree from Jacksonville State University, Jacksonville, Alabama, and in 2000 she received her Master of Music Education degree from VanderCook College of Music in Chicago, Illinois.
Sheila was the principal flutist with the Rome Symphony Orchestra in Rome, Georgia 1989-2003, has played with the Marietta Georgia Flute Choir, principal flute with the Gadsden Symphony Orchestra in Gadsden, Alabama and is currently a member of Tara Winds Concert Band. She has studied flute under Paul Brittain, Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, Carl Hall, Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, and Martha Bell, Birmingham Symphony Orchestra.
Sheila was voted South Central Middle School's Teacher of the Year in 1989-1990, 1999-2000, and again in 2008-2009. She has served as guest clinician/conductor throughout the Southeast. She is a member of the Georgia Music Educators Association, Delta Omicron, Phi Beta Mu, Music Educators National Conference, Professional Association of Georgia Educators, and the National Band Director Association. She has served her state music organization as an officer and has been the host for district events.
Sheila was selected as STAR Teacher in 2009. Former student Alicia St. Clair, STAR student from Woodland High School selected her.
The South Central Middle School Band has performed at many prestigious events under the direction of Sheila. Performances include: The Midwest International Band Clinic in Chicago in 2001, Georgia Music Educators Association In-Service Conference in Savannah, GA in 1998 and First Place Ensemble in the Heritage Music Festival in Honolulu, HI. The band has also been awarded grand champions at competitions in Atlanta, Florida, Virginia, Tennessee, North Carolina and South Carolina.
Most recently on March 30, 2013 the SCMS Honor Band was invited to perform at Carnegie Hall in New York City. The band was selected from a blind audition from hundreds of submissions across the country. South Central was the only middle school band selected and the only band from Georgia selected to perform. After the performance Ms. Smith noted that this was the "highlight" of her distinguished career thus far. Who knows what is in store for the years to come!
In 2013 the band was one of two middle schools to perform at Mid-Fest at the University of Georgia. And in 2014, the band was one of two middle schools selected to perform at the Georgia Music Educators Association In-Service Conference in Savannah, GA.
In 2015, the band was the guest performing band at the University of Alabama Middle School Honor Band Clinic and at the Reinhardt University Middle School Honor Band clinic.
This year the band will be the guest performing band at the Southeastern United States Middle School Honor Band clinic held at Troy University. The band will also be performing at Pearl Harbor in Honolulu, HI this spring.