Defining “Excellence”

We are not just looking for any music teacher, we are looking for the one who goes above and beyond for their students. The one who sees and works beyond barriers. The one who advocates for music education at every opportunity. The one who inspires students to achieve their greatest potential.


Music teachers who have been teaching 4+ years are eligible to apply for the Music Teachers of Excellence Award. A total of thirty (30) teachers will be selected: ten (10) teachers from Metro Nashville Public Schools, ten (10) teachers from the State of Tennessee, and ten (10) teachers from across the country.

Exemplary Teaching

  • Primary learning objectives are clear and relate to standards
  • Teacher sets clear and rigorous expectations for all students
  • Musical concepts and performance practices are successfully identified and appropriate for the age level of the class or ensemble.
  • Teacher demonstrates a high level of musical knowledge and musicianship
  • All interactions are positive and encouraging

Student Learning and Engagement

  • Students are responsive and engaged
  • Teacher demonstrates exemplary classroom management
  • Student learning is assessed and feedback is provided

Positive Contribution to School and Community culture

  • A positive and respectful culture in the classroom is evident
  • The teacher and music program affect the entire school culture
  • The teacher is a strong and active advocate for music education in their school and community
  • The teacher serves as a consistent and positive role model for the community

Continued Professional and Personal Growth

  • Participation in professional development opportunities
  • Implementation of professional growth
  • Leading local, state, or national professional development
How To Apply

We’re calling on ALL extraordinary, inspirational music teachers for this year’s Music Teachers of Excellence. We are not just looking for any music teacher – we are looking for the one that goes above and beyond for their students; the one that sees and works beyond barriers; the one advocating for music education at every opportunity; the one that inspires students to achieve their greatest potential. Does that sound like a someone you know? Are you that teacher?

The application for the 2020 class opens September 4, 2019 and closes November 18, 2019. Judging will take place from November 19, 2019 – January 10, 2020 with recipients revealed in February.


For more information on Music Teachers of Excellence application contact
Falon Keith, Grants Associate


(615) 263-3631