Scotty invites choral teacher to finale

Posted May 25, 2011 6:09 p.m. EDT
Updated May 25, 2011 9:23 p.m. EDT

— When “American Idol” finalist Scotty McCreery was given the chance to take a teacher to Los Angeles for the show’s finale, he chose Meredith Clayton, his choral teacher at Garner Magnet High School.

“We just feel really blessed and fulfilled, and it’s exciting to be a part of,” Clayton said. “We’re so proud of Scotty. It’s just an amazing time for his family.”

Clayton has another “American Idol” connection. Her mother, Diane Covington, taught season two runner-up Clay Aiken in chorus at Leesville Road High School.

“Clay was one who was talented from the moment I first saw him. I told him he had a gift going into the 10th grade,” Covington said.

Covington said she and her daughter have been fortunate because they have wonderful students.

During the "American Idol" finale, McCreery and fellow finalist Lauren Alaina presented their teachers with keys to a new Ford vehicle. 

To prepare for his “American Idol” audition, McCreery also used DVDs from “Idol” vocal coach Debra Byrd.

Since appearing on the show, Byrd has worked closely with McCreery.

“He knows who he is, as a singer, as an artist. He is the most focused young man I’ve ever, ever met,” Byrd said.