Mark, ChanceLight®, and Book’em
Mark Claypool’s first visit to his RIF classroom ten years ago was certainly not his first encounter with changing the lives of disadvantaged youth. Mark’s heart for helping children extends back to his days as a social worker for children in foster care homes. After recognizing the inadequacy of services intended to change the trajectory of children’s lives, Mark founded ChanceLight®, the nation’s leading provider of behavioral healthy, therapy, and education solutions for children and young adults. ChanceLight® serves nearly 19,000 clients and students in over 20 states each year, offering them the opportunity to create successful, independent futures.
So how does Book’em fit into this work? For Mark, the connection is quite clear. “Your reading foundation dictates your ability to face academic and personal challenges. You can persevere through a challenging math or science class if you can rely on a strong set of reading skills. We see kids lash out on their teachers or become the class clown, because that’s a lot easier to do than raise your hand and say, ‘I need help reading this’.”
Mark’s commitment to Book’em has grown from its origins as a volunteer through the Nashville Rotary, to what is now one of Book’em’s strongest partnerships. After serving on the board for several years, Mark was elected Board president in 2017. During this time, he brought ChanceLight® into the fold through Book’em’s Adopt-A-Classroom program, a sponsorship that provides our Reading Is Fundamental service to elementary classrooms in Title I MNPS schools.
Today, ChanceLight® and its employees proudly sponsor every classroom at Glenview Elementary School, bringing books and reading role models to 32 classrooms serving over 600 preK – 4th grade children each year. They volunteer their time reading in many of these classrooms, and have become a true friend to the school, providing teachers and students with consistent support from the Nashville community. “I see our involvement with Book’em as an extension of our work here at ChanceLight” Mark says, and it’s clear from their investment to the program that his team at ChanceLight® wholeheartedly agrees.
Mark’s Why: “I believe Book’em changes children’s lives.”
Favorite Children’s Book: Click Clack Moo