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Monday, November 25, 2019

Two Highlands Middle School Students Honored as Global Leaders

Two Highlands Middle School students earned Global Leader awards for their compassion and empathy for their peers.

 By Robin Gee, City Council Beat Editor 

Two students from Highlands Middle School were honored as Global Leaders at the November meeting of the Fort Thomas Independent Schools District board.

Reese Dunbar and Mayson Gindele were nominated by their principal Michael Howton as courageous leaders who reached out to help children in need within our community. The pair wanted to help children less fortunate, those in foster care and in residential living situations, have some fun and celebrate Halloween.

Gindele contacted the Diocesan Catholic Children’s Home (DCCH) in Fort Mitchell and asked if she and Dunbar might be able to help the children with trick or treating for Halloween. Although the organization had some Halloween plans in place, they asked the girls for help with decorating the DCCH van for Halloween. The van visited foster children throughout the community.

"They gave us some money so we went out and bought decorations and some cool stuff for the kids so they could have something other than candy, and we gave it out to them so they could have a Halloween just like we get to have," explained Gindele.

RELATED: Two Highlands Middle School Students Create "Trunk or Treat" Experience for Foster Kids

Superintendent Karen Cheser applauded the students for their caring and their efforts. "I just love the idea that you took the initiative to do this. Most kids might not be thinking of how they can help others. Pretty fantastic, thank you!"

Dunbar also was nominated for her work helping another student achieve academic success. Her teacher, Kim Klein, nominated her for a Global Leader award. In late October, Dunbar volunteered her time at Saturday school to help one of her peers catch up in science class.

"The student went from a lack of effort [in class] to maintaining a much better focus and putting forth a good-faith effort," explained Klein. "When I talked with the student, he wanted me to nominate Reese for her help. She helped him so much that he got an 'A' on his test in science. The empathy and compassion Reese demonstrates is worth noting and makes me very proud."

She added that, "to be a Bluebird it means we are family and look out for one another. Middle schoolers sometimes struggle with this dynamic because it is not always 'cool' to do so, but Reese went above and beyond to reach out to a peer and do something that helped him move in a positive direction. People like Reese make the world a better place."

The school board congratulated both students and presented them with well-deserved Global Leader awards.

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