Tessa Catlett is currently an Assistant Principal at KIPP Ascend Primary. After graduating from the University of Michigan with majors in Communication Studies and Peace and Social Justice, she began her education career as a Teach For America corps member teaching 4th and 5th grade in St. Louis. In the fall of 2013, Tessa joined KIPP Chicago as a founding 3rd grade teacher and completely fell in love with the school and community. Since then, she has served many roles, including 5th grade founding literacy centers teacher, Upper Elementary Reading Investment Coordinator, and Community Engagement Committee member. Tessa most recently received her Master of Arts from Teachers College, Columbia University as a member of their 2015 Summer Principals Academy cohort. Since then, she has grown to manage the upper school at KIPP Ascend Primary as the Assistant Principal beginning in the 2015-2016 school year. In this role, Tessa has imparted to her teaching team her student-centric focus on finding individualized paths to student engagement through rigorous and differentiated instruction that drives strong academic outcomes for all students. As an Assistant Principal, Tessa has also implemented a mindfulness curriculum and adopted restorative justice practices in her approach to managing student behavior and created a more empowered student culture. She is thrilled to be a member of the 2017-2018 Fisher Fellowship Cohort and cannot wait to found the next elementary school with KIPP Chicago.