When I was superintendent, I wore a pin on my lapel each and every day that said, “Children FIRST.” I wore it to remind myself why I got into education. I still wear that pin. And when people ask me about it now, I tell them I wear it because it inspires our work at Neola, and our goal to enable the next generation of school leaders to focus on their top priority. We have, and always will, put children first.
To do our job as educators we need to focus our time and energy first and foremost on children, but the ever-changing environment that results from new legislation, court decisions and actions of regulatory agencies often makes it difficult for educators to retain that focus.
I had been a client of Neola for twenty years when I had the opportunity to buy the company. I did so because, as a practitioner, I recognized how valuable the service was to me, especially when it came to the ever-increasing government regulation of schools. I wanted that same service to be here for school districts in the future.
I’m convinced that Neola’s success is due in large measure to my colleagues who call on you, our clients. Our associates are all former school administrators from the region they represent. Each associate understands the importance for districts to have up-to-date, legally compliant policies. Associates are expected to visit twice a year to provide support for clients as they update their policies and guidelines. Then those associates get out of your way until they’re needed again.
No educator should ever lose sight of the reason why we got into this work in the first place. We’re all in this together. I, and Neola as a whole, would be honored if you let us help you focus on what matters most of all.
Richard N. Clapp, Ph.D.