Welcome to Hiawatha Elementary School

Mrs. Caitlin BenesHiawatha Elementary SchoolPrincipal

Dear Hiawatha Families,

I hope everyone has had a wonderful and restful summer break! My name is Mrs. Caitlin Benes and I am the new Hiawatha Elementary Principal. I am very excited to start this upcoming school year with you and your student(s). I would like to take this opportunity to introduce myself.

I have worked for the Belvidere School District for the past ten years as an elementary special education teacher, and both an elementary and middle school assistant principal. I graduated from NIU with a Bachelor’s degree in Business Management and then transitioned into education. I received my first Master’s degree from University of Phoenix in Special Education and then my second Master’s degree from St. Xavier University in Educational Leadership. Both my past teaching/administrative roles and my education have offered me a wide range of experiences to draw from as I change over into the position of principal. Additionally, my family moved into Kirkland last year and we have a son going into the 6th grade at Hiawatha. We have loved living in such a great “small town” community.

Please know my door is always open if you have questions or concerns. You can reach me by phone, email, or in person. I look forward to meeting each and every one of the families at Hiawatha Elementary School.


Mrs. Caitlin Benes

Hiawatha Elementary School


(815) 522-2629