Meet Ms. Pitcher

Get to know one of Central Kitsap High School’s math teachers!


Bella Smith

Mrs. Pitcher

by Bella Smith, Reporter

Central Kitsap schools are fortunate to have so many kind, attentive teachers. Catherine Pitcher, a well known, well loved math teacher, has been teaching in the district since August of 2001.

Pitcher attended Chaffey High School in Ontario, Calif, before moving on to earn her degree at National University in San Diego, Calif. She earned a degree in liberal studies before participating in what she described as a “fifth year” where she earned her teaching degree. 

Pitcher’s mother was a teacher, and someone who contributed largely to her love of school growing up. 

“I had a mom who didn’t put pressure on us,” Pitcher said. “I know she expected a lot from us, but she would be a kind of person when we got report cards we would go out to eat that night… It was more of a celebration of learning. I think that’s what really helped me really enjoy school.” 

Originally, Pitcher did not want to become a teacher.

“I’m a kid of a teacher, so that made me never want to be a teacher,” Pitcher said. 

She had always loved math growing up in school, and despite not wanting to teach, she knew she absolutely wanted to go into the math field. 

“I was going to be an engineer or a CPA,” Pitcher said. “I was going to do something with math.”

While she never did end up in an engineering job, she did do quite a bit of accounting work, but decided to make a change and give teaching a chance when she realized the jobs she was previously doing weren’t making her happy. 

“I remember thinking, ‘I’m not excited to work on either of those,'” Pitcher said. “I had to figure out how to entertain myself.”

Pitcher ended up getting a job as an elementary school music teacher.

Motivational posters hung in Pitcher’s classroom (Bella Smith)

“I could not wait for Mondays, ” Pitcher said. “I was excited to go every single day.”

“And so I thought about this teaching thing, there’s something about it my mom’s keyed into,” Pitcher said. “I think that’s really what lit the fire.”

Since her initial entry into teaching, Pitcher has worked as a classroom teacher at an elementary, middle, and high school level, as well as a few different out of classroom positions such as a curriculum and learning specialist.

Both have been rewarding in their own ways.

“The thing that was nice about being the curriculum specialist or the coach was you were working with adults, and so it was helping them become better math teachers, which was exciting, to see them change their practices, to better their practices that they can put in place,” Pitcher said.

 “With teaching, you’ve got kids you’re shaping so they’re so different, and they’re both so fulfilling.”

But ultimately, she found her heart in classroom teaching. 

“The fact that I’m back in the classroom with kids really says that’s where my heart really is,” Pitcher said.

In all of her years of teaching, she has taught a few subjects, including history, which she really enjoyed. Even then, Pitcher would choose to teach math full time over any other subject.

“I see the beauty in math and I want to help kids see that beauty,” Pitcher said.

Pitcher was inspired to be the kind of teacher she is today by a former teacher of hers. 

“She was absolutely so hard on us, and just really pushed us to be the best that we could be and didn’t accept anything that wasn’t our best,” Pitcher said. “And I thought, you know, that is someone I would like to be like.”

All in all, Pitcher hopes her students will always be curious, and always remember that she is someone they will always have on their side.

“I want kids to wonder, I want them to discover on their own,” Pitcher said. “To have the kids know that there’s somebody that believes in them, that really cares about them, and that they can be successful in math.” 

Central Kitsap High School senior, Grace Homewood said Pitcher “really wanted to make sure students thrive.”

“I would recommend students try to get into her class,” Homewood said.

Junior Shayla Sutliff said she loved having Pitcher as a teacher. Despite it being an online course, Pitcher worked to always make sure the students were included, and made sure that if her students were struggling, she would explain it in a way that worked for them.

“I loved how she always tried to still make us feel included, even though we weren’t in a legitimate classroom setting,” Sutliff said “Anytime I had to ask for her help, after she explained it me I pretty much got it immediately and if I didn’t understand that she’d try a different way.” 

“She’s great!” Sutliff finalized.