By Russell Hood
The Webster Progress-Times
The main wing of Eupora Elementary School was dedicated last week in
memory of the late O.D. Jones and Wiley Mae Foard.
The memory and dedication ceremony for the Jones-Foard Wing was Feb.
28 in the school gym, with a reception following. Principal Trey
Rolison welcomed those attending and Superintendent of Education Jack
Treloar gave the opening remarks.
“We are proud of the rich legacy they left us,” Treloar said of
Jones and Foard, both longtime educators. “We dedicate this wing to
Referring to the integration of schools in August 1970, he said,
“The transition was made with minimal disruption thanks to their
Jones served as principal of the Webster County Training School from
1941-70 and as Eupora Middle School principal from 1970-77. The WCTS
building became the middle school after integration and is now the
elementary school. Jones died at age 83 on Jan. 10, 1998.
“His basic philosophy included the beliefs that serving God through
the church, a strong family life and emphasizing education were the
major tools to bringing improvements to our people,” his obituary
reads. “He was a firm believer in discipline.”
Foard served as elementary principal and teacher of the Webster
County Training School from 1957-70 and as Eupora Elementary
principal from 1970-85. She died Sept. 20, 2001, at age 78.
Jones was also a Methodist minister and Foard was a certified lay
speaker. Both were members of Liberty United Methodist Church.
Bobby McMullen, president of the Webster County School Board, said
the principals were committed to seeing all students achieve their
highest because of their dedication and love for students.
“Many of us have been successful because of what they instilled in
us,” he said, adding that this included honor and respect to all
McMullen thanked Treloar, former superintendent Jimmy Pittman and all
board members for their encouragement and support of his initiative
to see the wing named in honor of Jones and Foard. The school board
voted unanimously Jan. 15 to approve naming the main hallway in
memory of them.
Pittman, who also spoke in their honor, said, “These folks were
educators. … It was a passion.”
Family also gave remarks before the Jones-Foard Wing plaque was
“She looked at kids as her children, not students,” said one of
Foard’s sons. Jones’ daughter, Janice Jones Bridges, said her
father was strict but had compassion.