June Spotlight: Journey with the Capital Teaching Residency Program

Catherine Knowles   |  Capital Teaching Residency   |   Inspire Academy

This month, we visited Inspire Academy to meet up with a resident in the Capital Teaching Residency (CTR), Catherine Knowles.
Portrait of Catherine Knowles
Catherine worked as an executive assistant for an artist in Nashville and was ready for a change. Her sister, an assistant principal at another school district, recommended the CTR program to pursue a career in teaching.

“I’ve learned so much, especially about classroom management,” she reflects. “It was the scariest thing coming in, but I surprised myself with my skills working with children and how much I’ve learned overall. If a student is having a tricky day, I can take time to pull them to the side and build that connection with them.”

One of the benefits of the CTR program, according to Catherine, is the support from her cohort. “I feel like one of my favorite things is meeting all the other people in my cohort, especially coming here and not knowing anybody,” Catherine shares. “We have a huge group chat and we lean on each other throughout our day-to-day. If someone’s having a tough day, we’re like ‘You got this. Keep going!’ It’s been a big help having that support group.”

This year, Catherine has had the opportunity to learn and grow under the guidance and support of her lead teacher. “I was able to take on more responsibilities between leading the class all day, being able to step into third and fourth grade and help with specials. As more opportunities were presented to me, I was able to showcase my skills and everything that I’ve learned along the way.”

Catherine will be a senior resident in the 24-25 school year. When asked about her future plans after completing the CTR program, Catherine expresses her commitment to KIPP DC, saying, “I think KIPP DC is the best place for me, I’ve learned so much and the support and the community that you get, that’s a unique experience.”

Catherine shared a bit of advice for her students and potential CTR program applicants, “Don’t be afraid to try new things. Coming into this experience it’s easy to sit back and watch. but I would encourage people to try new things and be a part of your school community as much as possible, as well as always be yourself. As long as you’re true to yourself, you’ll find the path you’re supposed to be on.”

View photos from our visit. 

About the CTR program:
With a full year of learning under a mentor teacher, unparalleled professional development, and a commitment to educational equity, the Capital Teaching Residency provides an alternative and accessible pathway to teaching careers.
Learn more about our Capital Teaching Residency and embark on a journey towards becoming an exceptional educator and promoting educational equity.

Posted on June 18, 2024 in Community