|21 Nov 2022
|United States of America
|2016 Finalists Global Teacher Prize
Kaitlin wanted to be a teacher from a young age, and relished working with children ever since she was allowed to babysit. After seven years as a first grade teacher, her life changed dramatically as she and her students narrowly survived the massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary School on 14 December 2012.
Inspired by the help received by the school, she set up a non-profit organisation, Classes 4 Classes, to teach children the power of kindness and compassion. She created a crowdfounded platform that provides a structured social networking tool for K-8 classrooms to connect teachers and students across the United States. Classrooms post projects for other classrooms, engaging students in a social curriculum and highlighting their ability to create positive change for others. Each project is funded by outside donors and includes a gift which fulfills a need or educational objective. The gift is given to the teacher and the students in the receiving classroom, once the project goal is reached and the receiving students have started their own project for another classroom.
The tool is already being used in 10 states with over 1,000 students. Kaitlin has been invited to speak about the program to over 100 audiences of teachers, administrators and school boards about moving forward from trauma and Classes 4 Classes.