An elementary-only independent school located in Atlanta, serving children ages three through Sixth Grade since 1951.
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We are all Mathematicians

Introducing Trinity’s New UED Math Specialist

Kerry Coote is one of those people who can change your life after spending just 10 minutes with her. I know, it happened to me. After visiting Kerry in her math camp 
classroom this summer to talk about her new role as Upper Elementary Division Math Specialist here at Trinity, I left with a completely different outlook on math. I have never been a math lover; it has always been a struggle for me. Kerry, on the other hand, has been a lover of math for as long as she can remember. 

Kerry says everyone “knows her as a math person,” and when the School announced its search for the new position of Upper Elementary Division Math Specialist, she knew it was an exact fit for her passions and skill set. A member of the Trinity community since 2012, most recently as a Second Grade Associate Teacher, Kerry says that Trinity is home to her and has been her only employer since moving to the United States from Toronto, Canada. A native of Kingston, Jamaica, she and her husband, Howard, are the proud parents of two wonderful girls, who started at Trinity as an Early Learner and as a Pre-K student and cannot imagine themselves anywhere else. As a teacher and a parent, Kerry is thankful for the School’s emphasis on encouraging personal reflection and tinkering with approaches until a higher level of success is achieved.

Well-equipped for her new role, Kerry was thrilled to receive the job and is excited to share her enthusiasm for math with others. Growing up she was always drawn to science and math, which lead to her earning a Bachelor of Science in Electronics and Physics from the University of the West Indies. Kerry also holds a Bachelor of Science in Early Childhood Education from Kennesaw State University.

Before becoming the UED Math Specialist, she regularly stepped outside of her formal role as an Associate Teacher to share her passion with others. Over the past four years, she has strengthened her craft as
a math educator through her community participation, serving as a co-chair
on the Faculty Staff Leadership Team (FSLT) Math committee, facilitating Pi in the Sky Math, and leading after-school math classes and summer camps. Kerry is committed to continuing professional development and is currently pursuing a Master of Arts in Teaching Mathematics at Mount Holyoke College.

As the UED Math Specialist, Kerry works directly with Second through Sixth Grade students to deepen their understanding and use of mathematics while coaching teachers to develop more effective instruction and assessment practices. This new position complements the outstanding work that Early Elementary Division Math Specialist Becky Holden is doing with our students in Early Learners through First Grade. Kerry is eager to
see how the students grow as math learners and the teachers flourish as math educators with her support. She looks forward to mentoring her colleagues and working with students who are at different learning levels on a daily basis, allowing her to have a greater impact on the lives of students and build their understanding of many different types of skills. Kerry says, “I want students to understand that there are no good or bad mathematicians; we are all mathematicians.”

Kerry is also focused on encouraging teachers to seek out opportunities that allow students to demonstrate what they know before attempting new instructions. She feels this new role at Trinity will allow her to help every student she meets feel confident in their math skills and help her succeed in bringing her vision to be the best math educator she can be to fruition.

As a Trinity parent, Kerry is pleased that the School is going above and beyond to enhance students’ math understanding. This new position will anticipate the needs of students as they learn new content and will be a great resource for teachers.

She says, “Students often develop misconceptions and fears about math, including a perception that it is difficult, that only a few people can do math well. My goal is to encourage students to think of themselves as problem solvers and to embrace any uncertainty or struggle as a learning process that leads to true understanding.”

Kerry also says that teaching gives her a tremendous sense of joy and fulfillment; she considers it a privilege to have the opportunity to shape young minds and to help students have those “light bulb moments” when they believe in their own potential. When speaking with Kerry you can tell that she pours her heart and soul into everything she does.

“Trinity has always invested in me,” she says. “In my new role as UED Math Specialist, I have the opportunity to give back to this community through my love and passion for math and our students.”

After concluding my interview with Kerry, I felt like math isn’t the scary subject I believed it to be, that I too can be a mathematician. If you ever have the chance to spend 10 minutes with Kerry Coote, please do so. She will leave a lasting impression. Trinity School is lucky to have such a loving, genuine, and passionate employee shaping the lives of our students.


Written by: Stephanie Selman, Associate Communications Manager


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