Vanessa Bilello Principal
Winner of Winslow Coyne Reitnouer Excellence in Teaching Award Winners
Vanessa Bilello, Principal, Hopkins School, Hopkinton, Massachusetts
Vanessa Bilello has been the school principal at the Hopkins School in Hopkinton, Massachusetts for the past three years, following two years as an Assistant Principal. Prior to her roles in administration, Vanessa spent over ten years as a special educator for students in 1st through 8th grade in both Palo Alto, California and Franklin, Massachusetts. With her background as a special education learning specialist for students with a variety of disabilities, establishing Hopkins as an inclusive and welcoming school had been at the top of her priorities. As a principal, Vanessa is passionate about creating a school environment celebrating the diversity of learners who make up the community of 560 fourth and fifth graders at Hopkins.
Vanessa has established a multitude of programs to support and recognize the diverse learners at Hopkins, including a successful “Peer to Peer Program” that develops and nurtures friendships between students with and without disabilities. The school seeks to build awareness and understanding about about learning differences through special building-wide, two year-long curriculum program entitled, “Understanding our Differences,” that seeks to educate and inform students at Hopkins about autism, intellectual disabilities, vision impairment/blindness and learning disabilities. She also coordinates a monthly ‘Principal’s Cabinet” to encourage student leadership acknowledging the school’s many core values, from Empathy to Effort that holds special spirit weeks such as an Anti-Bullying campaign, Random Acts of Kindness week and an “I AM” walk.