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Kaitlin Roig-DeBellis: Courage in the Classroom


Event Status

On December 14 2012, Kaitlin Roig-DeBellis, a teacher at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Connecticut, was reading to her class of first-graders – when she heard the sound of gunshots and shattering glass.

Thinking quickly, Katilin managed to pile her 15 students into a single bathroom stall until the shooting stopped, protecting them from the gunman in one of the most chilling massacres in recent memory.

During those events and in the intervening years, Kaitlin has set an extraordinary example of courage and kindness in the classroom. She has founded a charity, Classes4Classes, a social network connecting students and teachers across the United States, that is grounded in the idea of ‘paying if forward’.

In this midday event at the Wheeler Centre, Kaitlin will talk about what teachers and students can learn from each other and share her insights on hope, resilience and generosity in the classroom.


Kaitlin Roig-DeBellis

Kaitlin Roig-DeBellis began teaching first grade at Sandy Hook Elementary School in 2007. In 2013, while on temporary leave from teaching, she founded Classes 4 Classes, an organisation whose mission is to teach children the power of kindness and compassion through their ability to create ... Read more


The Wheeler Centre

176 Little Lonsdale Street Melbourne Victoria 3000

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The Wheeler Centre acknowledges the Wurundjeri Woi Wurrung people of the Kulin Nation as the traditional owners of the land on which we work. We pay our respects to the people of the Kulin Nation and all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Elders, past and present.