Paola has a lifelong passion for teaching that stems from her own childhood experience and the simple observation that although a child may not remember the name or the face of a teacher, their inner self never forgets the positive impact of that relationship. She graduated with a degree in Special Education from the Metropolitan University of Educational Sciences in her native Chile and subsequently received a post-graduate certificate in Language and Speech Disorders from The University of San Andrés. Over the following seven years, she worked in the classroom as a special educator and for a pioneering program that provided public schools with SEITs.
As Paola has encountered new challenges as an educator, she’s sought to continue her pedagogical development through additional study. In 2007, she enrolled at the University of Ramón Llull in Barcelona, Spain, earning a postgraduate certificate in Psychomotor Education. Shortly thereafter she moved with her husband to the United States and gained additional professional experience that has included working in early childhood education as a classroom teacher, working with adolescents with autism and other disabilities, working in impoverished communities as an itinerant teacher, and teaching Spanish to young children in a language-immersion program. In 2018, she cofounded and taught a literacy group for indigenous Mexican women within her son’s school community. This rewarding experience further increased her resolve and refined her focus, and contributed to her decision to obtain a dual master’s degree from Hunter College in Early Childhood Education and Students with Disabilities from birth-grade 2 with an annotation certificate in Severe/Multiple Disabilities. Paola enjoys traveling with her family, meeting new people, cooking, and reading books.