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Extraordinary Educator: Caitlyn Polito

Caitlyn Polito, Oak Hill Elementary, awarded High Point Extraordinary Educator by the High Point School Schools Partnership at High Point Country Club, High Point, N.C., Friday, August 20, 2021. (Lynn Hey photo)

2021 Extraordinary Educators: Caitlyn Polito

Great communities have great schools. High Point Schools Partnership creates impactful connections between our schools and the wider community to ensure students and their families are supported and can reach their full potential in High Point schools.

Part of High Point Schools Partnerships’ mission is to improve the image of our schools through storytelling. Who better to tell the stories of High Point’s schools than the people experiencing it first-hand? In this series of eight articles, we will highlight our 2021 High Point Extraordinary Educators as we dive deeper into what keeps them motivated in the face of constant challenges.

Caitlyn Polito

The 2021-2022 academic year will be Caitlyn Polito’s third year at Oak Hill Elementary School. She “enjoys working with our students and families” and she “also has a great team of educators who she gets to learn from every day.”

Candice Bailey, the principal at Oak Hill Elementary School, describes Mrs. Polito as an “energetic educator” who is “hard-working, dedicated, and caring.”

Bailey states that Mrs. Polito “always goes the extra mile for students and works tirelessly to ensure students have access to the curriculum.” 

During remote learning, she “supported the EL students and even volunteered to bring a small group of students to the building to support their learning when they were unable to access the internet from their homes.”

Q: What inspired you to become an educator?

A: I’ve always been inspired by the potential of working with young people and the positive impact they will have on our world’s future.

Q: What’s your teaching/leadership style?

A: I’m a bilingual educator, and I’ve always valued incorporating the strengths of our students’ cultures, home lives, and any other languages spoken into our classroom community. When students know that you see them as a whole, complete person, that fosters a positive relationship where students feel seen, heard and understood. My goal is for my leadership style to be relationship-oriented, culturally competent, and trauma-informed.

Q: Do you have a classroom motto or philosophy you abide by? Why?

A: My philosophy is that every student learns every day. I will educate myself and grow professionally however I need to ensure the success of every student. I know that having an effective teacher is the most influential variable in a student’s learning, and I hold myself to a high standard of excellence in order to ensure that every student learns every day.

Q: What’s your favorite part about every day?

A: My favorite part of my job has always been reading with students. I love being a part of their literacy journey and to see their pride as their reading skills improve. Getting the right book into a student’s hands that makes them excited to read is always a home run moment for me.

Q: What’s your most memorable moment as an educator?

A: Years after I’ve taught students, they’ve invited me to their high school graduations. I’m always so proud of their commitment to their education, and it’s special to share that moment with their families.

If Mrs. Polito could tell students’ parents anything, she would tell them she has “so much respect for what they do at home” and she is “working hard for their children to have the best education at school.”

If she could tell her students anything, she would say that “being a part of their lives is absolutely the best part of mine. I wish every student the bright, successful future of their dreams.”

Thank you so much to Caitlyn Polito for your dedication to High Point’s students. Congratulations on being selected as your school’s 2021 Extraordinary Educator!

To find out more about High Point Schools Partnership and our work, please visit our Facebook page and check out our page on Guilford Education Alliance’s website.

Article written by High Point Schools Partnership Staff