The Path North: Cedrick Howard Winds Up Where He Wants to Be



New at North: Cedrick Howard, who is enjoying his first year at North Atlanta, teaches audio and film production. Howard said all he’s done in his professional life has prepared him for his current service to the school’s students. Regan Murray

Born in College Park just south of the city, audio and film production teacher Cedrick Howard was born into a military family. Because of this military background, the Howard family has had to move a lot. Germany was home to this itinerant family for four years, North Carolina was home for two years, and Paris, France for one year. The whole military thing wasn’t Howard’s style although he envied his “old man” for his service. Marching band however was his thing. For his school, at North Clayton High School in College Park, he was an active member of the marching band. In his high school years, when he was not playing the baritone, he was playing a variety of sports. “I spent my free time working to pay for all of my school necessities,” he said. 

A high school setting is a natural place for the born leader and his entry into Atlanta Public Schools started at Maynard Jackson High, coaching every sport and taking over the school’s audio video production program in 2014. 

Fast forward seven accomplished years among the Jaguars, Howard decided to come to Buckhead to be a part of the district’s largest high school. During this academic year, he accepted a teaching position at North Atlanta. “I felt like it was the time for me to come to North Atlanta because I’ve wanted it for so long,” he said.  

Howard said he’s been impressed with North Atlanta students and the widely felt school spirit he’s seen, along with the hyper involved nature of North students. “My hope is that I can impact every child that I encounter and continue to boost the morale of each student especially during the pandemic,” he said. 

Working in an educational environment has not always been Howard’s field of endeavor. For his college years, he studied at Morrison Brown in Atlanta and at Savannah State University in Savannah where he graduated in 2005 with a degree in a bachelors in mass communication and a minor in film. For his master’s degree in fine arts he attended the University of Georgia where he graduated in 2018. A true believer in education, he also obtained a second master’s degree in education from Walden University. 

Early in his professional career, he went into the criminal justice direction and worked as a sheriff deputy for the Fayette County Sheriff’s Office. After working in that field, Howard sensed he wanted to go into a different direction. “I wanted to teach because there were so many kids locked up and I figured teaching would help with that,” he said.
As a teacher, he enjoys hearing about his student’s success stories. “My favorite thing is seeing the growth from year to year with my students,” he said. 

Howard is a family man with one 9-year-old daughter named Kyndra. He met his wife when they both were students. 

Howard’s daughter is a big part of his life and being a parent has given him a lot of insight when it comes to teaching. It has made teaching a more personal experience and forced him to look at his students more individually rather than as a whole. “I look at how I want my child to be treated fair and equal,” he said. It’s evident how much his daughter loves him and he loves her and his wife just as much, maybe even more. “My daily inspiration is my wife and my daughter,” he said. 

As a father and educator, Howard said he draws inspiration from Young Jeezy’s “No Other Way.” The lyrics of the song — which exhort a listener to not quit in the face of obstacles — motivate him to push on toward his own life goals. Howard is now reaching his goals here among the mighty Warriors of North Atlanta and we’re all the better for it.