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Tuesday, February 27, 2018

Highlands Middle and High School Strings Teacher Receives Prestigious Teaching Award

As a blue-ribbon district, Fort Thomas Independent Schools requires excellence in teaching and excellence from its students.

Kathy Anderson, Strings and Orchestra teacher at both the Highlands Middle School and Highlands High School, was recently recognized for her excellence in teaching at a state level by being named the 2018 Kentucky Music Educators Association (KMEA) Middle School Teacher of the Year Award winner.

This prestigious award is given annually at the KMEA General Assembly meeting which was held this year on February 9 at the Galt House in Louisville.  At that assembly meeting, Anderson was awarded the Educator of the Year award by KMEA President Terry Thompson for her work with the Highlands Middle School Chamber Orchestra.

Anderson was born in New York, grew up in Philadelphia, and now lives in a restored farm house with her husband in Oregonia, OH.  She received her bachelor’s degree from Manhattan School of Music and her master’s from Yale University.  Prior to joining the Fort Thomas Independent School system, Anderson was a member of the faculty string quartet at Miami University. She began her teaching career in 7th grade when she taught high school students the violin and has continued her teaching career ever since.  Additionally, Anderson has led several home orchestras.

Anderson began teaching at Highlands High School 10 years ago and teaches 6th-12th graders a string orchestra class, a 6th-8th grade Chamber Orchestra at HMS, and the Sinfonia and HHS Chamber Orchestra at the high school.  She has also taught at Johnson Elementary while building the HMS strings program.

Anderson was nominated for the award by Dr. Amy Gillingham, Assistant Professor and Director of Orchestras at Northern Kentucky University.  After her nomination, Anderson was then chosen from all the nominees to represent District 6 at the KMEA Awards, where she won the statewide award.

Says Anderson of her nomination, “I was quite surprised; I think that every teacher is fantastic and should be named Teacher of the Year.”

The KMEA has been in existence since 1907 with the goal of advocating on behalf of and providing education about Music and Music Educators.  Dating back to 1985, per their website, they have been awarding educators of the year in various categories; Anderson joins a long list of prestigious music educators in the state.  For more information on KMEA visit or for the Fort Thomas Schools visit

Congratulations to Kathy Anderson on her prestigious award.

Kathy Anderson. File. 

PHOTO: Kathy Anderson conducting middle school strings. FTM file. 

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