Social Studies Teacher Caitlin Tripp Named 2019-2020 Teacher of the Year


AP World History teacher Caitlin Tripp is known for her teaching methods that create a comfortable yet competitive learning environment for her students. The faculty and staff at North Atlanta High School named Tripp the 2019-2020 Teacher of the Year for her contribution and dedication to the school.

Tripp was born and raised in West Africa, specifically the Ivory Coast. During middle school, she resided in Costa Rica and then for high school lived in Ecuador. In each of these countries, Tripp aimed to immerse herself into the new cultures. “My parents also grew up in different countries,” she said. “So in new places, my mother always told me ‘Go make friends. Integrate yourself with the culture and the people.’”

Tripp came to the States when she attended the University of North Georgia in Dahlonega. There she double-majored in history — with a world history focus — and Secondary Education. At college Tripp minored in Spanish, a language she speaks fluently thanks to her years in Latin America. The 2019-2020 school year marks her sixth year in the classroom and third year teaching AP world history.

Even before attending college, Tripp had the desire to teach history. Through each of the different societies and experiences she was exposed to, she developed a passion for culture. “World History is naturally my jam, and I like the students who take it because we share the same interests,” she said. “If they don’t like what I like, they won’t engage.”

Because Tripp teaches an Advanced Placement class, her students are expected to perform at the college level. In order to help each and every student succeed, Tripp creates dynamic activities and ensures that everyone has access to the resources they need. “Ms. Tripp will always be there if you need help. She gives you opportunities to do well even if it isn’t your strongest subject,” said Junior Lilly Lazarus.

Tripp is also an advocate for the flexible seating philosophy, which encourages students to choose the spot where they think they will learn best. Students appreciate being able to feel empowered in this unique learning environment. “She goes above and beyond for her students to make sure they learn and feel comfortable in her classroom,” said Junior Tiara Gregg.

In addition to the dedication to her students, Tripp makes notable contributions to the school as a whole. “She is an engaging teacher and her students really love her,” said fellow social studies teacher Eleanor Brookins. “She also writes curriculum for APS. She’s definitely a real go-getter.”

Both the students and the faculty at North Atlanta recognize Tripps’s exceptional impact on North Atlanta High School. It is through her passion for world history, her involvement in the school, and her remarkable consideration for each of her students that Tripp was named the 2018-2019 Teacher of the Year. “My response was one of absolute disbelief. Although of course, I had to try not to cry because I am a professional,” she said with a smile.