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Beary Cherry Tree Child Development Center

Paula Polito | Owner


Wtw Aimeefreeman

Paula Polito grew up in a family of educators and strong female leaders. Her grandmother and mother both worked in early care and education, her mother operating a center serving over 180 children, while her father taught and served in the administration at Archbishop Rummel High School.

“With strong female leadership combined with the structure offered by my father, I often say I have the best of both of my parents,” says Paula.

After graduating with an MBA from UNO, Paula purchased Beary Cherry Tree in 1999 and has grown this high-quality early care and education center to now serve over 200 families. In addition to overseeing everyday operations, Paula currently serves as a contract trainer for Teachstone, the maker of the Classroom Assessment Scoring System® (CLASS). Through implementation of the CLASS tool, Paula understands measures of quality in early care and education, and she ensures teacher-child interactions at Beary Cherry Tree meet and exceed these standards.

Paula’s work doesn’t stop there—she recently returned to UNO to pursue her PhD with a concentration in Urban Studies/Affair. Outside of the center and classroom, Paula is deeply involved in advocacy efforts at the state and local level. She serves as Advisory Board Chair for the Louisiana Department of Education, commission member for the Louisiana Early Childhood Care and Education Commission, and advisory council member for Jefferson Ready Start Network. She previously served as Education Chair for the Jefferson Chamber of Commerce. As a female small-business owner, Paula has leveraged her position to bring light to the necessity of access to early child care across Louisiana.

Beary Cherry Tree Child Development Center
3117 Lake Villa Drive, Metairie


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