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My SPS Story: Katy Shatto, assistant principal at Westport K-8 School

July 27, 2023

katy shatto

“Westport is a great place to be! All the adults in the building are supportive of each other and come to school each day to love on and support our students. Westport practices Conscious Discipline, so we are working by helping students identify and work through their brain states, in order to be their best self. The staff in the building from kindergarten to eighth grade come together each day in an afternoon circle time, where we learn, debrief, discuss and laugh together. That daily connection with a large staff helps keep us cohesive and  collaborative. 

Westport teachers are constantly reflecting on their practices, by looking at data both academic and behavior. We have the Landing room in both elementary and middle schools, where students can come or are sent to de-escalate and reset in order for them to get back to their learning. Our teachers in the Landing do a wonderful job at helping students identify their brain state, help the student choose a de-escalation strategy, have restorative conversations and help the student plan for a successful reentry into class. We also have a check-in-check-out system for students who need extra support throughout the day. Our attendance buddies are in place to support students and set goals so that they can be at school and learning. 

Our teachers collaborate with other grade levels in order to build connections within our school family. Engagement in our school wide Zoom morning meeting, where we connect as a school family, is just another way teachers use strategies to engage our students.

My role as a leader is to support the teachers, so that they can provide students with the best instruction.

I work each day to make sure our teachers feel supported and, in that way, the students are supported too. I love having fun, dancing and joking with the students, but they know when it is time to be serious. I hold the students to high expectations and I will not relax on the expectations, no matter the time of the school year.

This year, we can do so much together, and I want teachers and students to know that I have their backs and want the best for them. There's so much for students and staff to look forward to, and we have students set goals and have celebrations for when they achieve growth towards their goals.

Our Westport Wildcats are smart, and I want everyone to know that!

Westport is truly a great place to be, and I love it here. There is nowhere else I’d rather be.”