Calculating for 75 Years: Maryland Math Teacher Still at the Head of the Class

Miller, a life-long learner who has continued his education through numerous fellowships around the country over the years, attributes his work ethic to his parents.

He is one of five sons of Lithuanian immigrants. His father was a tailor who escaped indentured servitude in Lithuania. His mother, who could not read, would monitor her sons' homework and make them re-do it if it didn't appear to be neat and organized.

Miller's children -- there are seven of them (an orthodontist, a chiropractor, a neurologist, a podiatrist, an optometrist, an engineer, and a nurse) and 16 grandchildren -- would like to see him recognized for his long service in teaching.

An appeal to the Guinness World of World Records was rejected: The record appears to be held by Medarda de Jesus Leon de Uzcategui of Venezuela, who taught for 96 years, beginning when she was 12.

Now they plan to try the National Teachers Hall of Fame, where Miller probably has a decent chance of being recognized. The longest-serving teacher currently recognized there clocked a mere 54 years in the classroom.

The hall of fame's Jenny Harder calls Miller's achievement "absolutely amazing," particularly given that 25-50 percent of new teachers drop out of the profession within the first five years.

Miller's advice to the rookies -- and anyone else angling for chance at longevity of any kind -- is simple: "Stay in good health. Watch your diet. Get enough sleep. And most of all, after the day is finished, don't worry about it."

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