Meet Erica McLaughlin, Principal of Randolph Elementary School and, with Pat Miller and Susan McKelvie, co-administrator of Braintree and Brookfield Elementary schools.

A native Vermonter, Erica earned her Bachelor of Arts degree at Sacred Heart University in Fairfield, Ct. majoring in Psychology and minoring in music. Following graduation she became a teacher in the Bridgeport, Ct. schools while earning her Masters in Arts and Teaching and her Administration Certificate. She joined Randolph Elementary in 2005 as Assistant Principal under Shirley Stewart, whom McLaughlin called “an amazing teacher, friend, and mentor.”

In 2015, Erica was named Vermont’s Elementary School Principal of the Year by the Vermont Principals’ Association (VPA).

“It was a wonderful honor” she said of the award,” but the recognition really belongs to my colleagues. I’ve always said we are in this together, good and bad, and this very good thing was no exception. In my mind, the award was about every teacher, administrator, and para-educator in our elementary school. Without my team, there would’ve been no ‘me’ to accept the award.”

Since taking over from Stewart, Erica has accomplished much that makes her proud, but she credits her success, consistently, to the people with whom she works.

“As a team,” she said, “we have always worked toward meeting the needs of the whole child. And that means their academic needs as well as their social and emotional needs. And what we’ve learned over the years is that this is best accomplished through collaboration…among classroom teachers, support service teachers, and teachers across the SU. We have not only found that many minds are better than one, but also that we can use our “collective genius” to better support the needs of all of our students.”