Letters From Neverland

Never Grow Up, Inc. Employee Newsletter

Who's On First?

In this section, we are introducing you to our NGU Management Team!

This month's featured employee is Lesley Hosford. Lesley is our Chief Operations Officer, COO for Never Grow Up, Inc. She is a proud wife, mother and childcare expert -- basically she is like Superwoman!

Lesley has spent 10 years working at NGU and has has DOUBLE the number of years (20 total) experience in childcare in general. Lesley started out as a toddler teacher and then worked her way up to several different roles -- including cook, assistant director and director. Her passion is leading teachers!

"I enjoy getting to remind everyone of the importance of what we do," Lesley said.

As a member of NAEYC (National Association for the Education of the Young Child), among other local NAEYC chapters, Lesley spends most of her time attending conferences to stay up to date with industry trends and being a life long learner in the child care realm. How funny is it that even as a grown up, Lesley's passion is to #growlearnplay?!

Lesley is married to high school sweetheart, Danny. They have two daughters, one in college and one in middle school -- Lauren and Kaitlyn. Both Lesley and Danny spend countless summers with traveling softball, as both of the girls are athletes!

"When I am not working can be found at the softball fields," she admits.

She is active in the Murfreesboro community by serving on the board for the Live4Tay foundation. Live4Tay supports childhood cancer patients, along with coordinating and participating in volunteering at the schools. Lesley recently celebrated her 40th birthday, but has still stood strong to the company policy of NEVER growing up! :)

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NGU Mandatory Vision Training

Saturday, Nov. 5th, 9am-12pm

377 South Royal Oaks Boulevard

Franklin, TN


There will be a mandatory vision training on November 5 from 9 am to 12 noon at the Academy of Forrest Crossing, 377 S. Royal Oaks Blvd, Franklin, TN. Molly Bahre from NGU Management will be conducting this training.

Terrific Toddler Training

Saturday, Nov. 5th, 1-4pm

377 South Royal Oaks Boulevard

Franklin, TN


There will also be a terrific toddler training on November 5 at the Academy of Forrest Crossing, 377 S. Royal Oaks Blvd, Franklin, TN. Lisa Vinson will be facilitating this training on the same day, 11/5, from 1-4 pm at AoFC.

Lesley's HOT TOPIC

Our COO, Lesley Hosford, will use this space to talk about the HOT TOPIC!

We are going to go over a few "hot topics" Lesley has been on for the last few months. Check them out for useful tips on how to channel your inner teacher and let her shine in the best way!

This month's topic is CONSCIOUS DISCIPLINE.

Conscious Discipline training was helpful for us to learn how to use the Brain Smart Start & connections found in the Frog Street Curriculum. The Conscious Discipline program is designed to teach effective social-emotional skills and embed resiliency into the school culture as a way to counteract the stress and trauma that are so prevalent in our society.

For the month of October, homework is reading Chapter 4 and begin making changes to our classroom environments.

Classroom Changes include:

1. Commitment Charts

2. Safe place

3. Kindness tree

4.Classroom Routines & Rituals (ex. We wish you well)

Highlights from the first 3 chapters include:

Three core components of Conscious Discipline are: 1. Safety, 2. Connection, 3. Problem-Solving.

Each classroom & school is a culture and builds a school family.

Teachers use classroom routines & rituals to build a school family.

To successfully teach a life skill, we must model and demonstrate in daily life, it starts with us.

"Be the change you want to see in the world"

-Mahatma Gandhi

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Do YOU want to win $100?!

We don't know if you have been reminded about this or not, but if you refer/recruit a TEAM member to work for Never Grow Up, Inc., you could get $100!

Our goal is to create a community of empowered individuals and if you know someone who has a passion for educating and shaping youth, please send them our way.

New team members you refer who stay more than 90 days will qualify you to get $100 added to your paycheck. The referred team members need to specify who specifically referred them to get credit. Garrett, a 2015 Academy grad, is shown in the above video asking the tough questions your potential referred interviewees may hear! Check it out below!

Academy Preschools Interview Questions

Tadpoles: Navigating the Stream

Tadpoles has been a great tool to streamline effective, fun and safe communication between parents and teachers. The end goal is to use this to share those "OH SO SPECIAL" moments with the parents who are not as lucky as you to spend the day with their precious loved ones.

Lesson plans placed in tadpoles, documented meals, messaging, checking in and so many other functions are utilized on a daily basis. What do YOU think is the coolest feature of tadpoles? What would you like to see improved? We want to work with you to ensure a fun, openly communicated relationship with your directors and parents. Please let us know what we can do to make your TADPOLES experience as fun as possible!


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Promoting Family Time: Dinner On Us!

This month's Who Does That?! goes to AoCS' Sara, Michelle and all of their amazing team! In an effort to promote family time, AoCS' team decided to provide a meal to go, "just because."

Cool Springs' parents were able to savor BBQ, seasoned potatoes, salad, rolls and cookies at home, without having to cook one bit of it! The meals were prepped and ready to go, so the only ingredient missing was the family!

We wanted to share an example of what this means to a parent:

E-Mail from Academy Parent:

"I just wanted to say thank you so much for the dinner last night. You guys are all so great! It was so nice to have a real dinner prepared to
Eat as a family. I'm pretty sure Adam and I have eaten cheese slices and cereal for dinner the last 7 months since Walker has been bored. Thanks for all you do!"

We hope you keep this in mind. Your impact on people is beyond what you think. Even preparing a meal for someone after a long hectic day can change their whole perspective, because they can enjoy a meal with their child. Thank you for allowing parents the ability to take time to enjoy what truly matters: time with your family!

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Ms. Cedrica -- Pre-K Teacher at AoMF

In this section, we are featuring teachers who have some pretty neat accomplishments, both in and out of the classroom.

Congratulations to Ms. Cedrica at The Academy of Maryland Farms for becoming a Self-Care columnist at RadiantMagazine.Org!

Check out her bio on the site HERE! Cedrica has published self care columns such as The Importance of Self Care and Saying Yes To Taking Care of Yourself.

Cedrica has been with The Academy for almost 3 years (in January). Coming in with no previous experience, Cedrica's child care career has been at NGU! She has held a lot of positions, from floating around, working her way up to Third In Command and Lead Teacher at AOMF.

As educators, we salute you, Cedrica, for taking the time out for yourself to share insights on the importance of self care. Without caring for ourselves, how can we remain THE BEST in child care?!

You Asked, We Listened: Round Table Discussions at NGU

NGU Round Tables were held in July, during which representatives from each center gathered to raise their voice about insights and ideas to improve the organization as a whole. Many changes are being implemented in response. Below are three small examples. We appreciate your feedback, and look forward to more Round Tables in the future!

· Terrific Toddler Training: You expressed that the toddler age sometimes seems left out in terms of enhancements and unique activities. We have a speaker coming the afternoon of November 5th for a Terrific Toddler training, to improve our toddler programming. All toddler teachers (and anyone else interested!) are encouraged to attend!

· Maintenance Needs: You communicated a great appreciation for the maintenance team and a great need for more help with maintenance issues in your classrooms. We are working to increase the size of our maintenance team in order to more efficiently and effectively address the needs of our centers. If you see the maintenance guys, be sure to say hello and thank them for their hard work!

· 401K: You conveyed that there was confusion surrounding the 401K benefit. This year, all participants in the 401K will receive a year end discretionary bonus, a lump sum for enrolling in the program. We will evaluate participation at the end of the year to decide how to move forward, and determine if the company will move to a matching system instead of a lump sum. Log into Total Source to enroll today!

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Below are photos documenting the Branches #BEYONDtheFLOOD donations as well as Katie's trip to the Ascension Parrish School Board. Our company and families, thanks to your help, were able to help victims of the 2016 Louisiana flood.

"On behalf of everyone at East Ascension High School thank you for your generosity and support! We are overwhelmed with the response and it means the world to us! I can't thank you enough," said EAHS teacher, Keisha.

These photos are being re-shared as we work to coordinate a second trip down to Baton Rouge.

We would love to connect with YOU! Visit www.branchesministries.org for more information.


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Branches' Katie posed for a picture with some students who attend a school who was helped by the flood relief efforts. Happy Students: "THANK YOU, NGU STAFF & Families!"

NGU New Team Member Orientation

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NGU New Team Member Orientation

NGU Management Team Members Lesley and Molly played icebreaker name games with Never Grow Up, Inc.'s first company-wide staff orientation. This game was giving a motion to your name and remembering the names and motions of your counterparts and colleagues.
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We are still waiting to hear the verdict, but we wanted to THANK YOU for encouraging our parents to vote THE ACADEMY for BEST OF PARENTING in 2016! Stay tuned to see if we win it for the NINTH year in a row in Williamson County! If you haven't checked out our ACADEMY video, hear what our parents have to say about why we are THE BEST!
The Academy Preschools in Nashville TN

Anything missing?

Last but not least, we wanted to get input from YOU on what would be helpful in our company newsletter. We cannot do any of this without our AMAZING educators that help us to create childhood as we grow, learn and play (in a faithful, family, fun environment) every single day.