Education Leaders Claypool And McLaughlin Launch New School

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (July 21, 2021) – Mark Claypool and John McLaughlin, respected education industry veterans with decades of experience, today announced the creation of Galileo Preparatory Academy (GPA), a learner-centric, personalized middle and high school that brings together the best of traditional in-person instruction, virtual learning and technology-focused coursework.

“My entire career has centered on providing children with the tools they need to have a successful life,” said Mark Claypool, co-founder of Galileo Preparatory Academy. “With GPA, we are reinventing learning for students in grades 6 through 12. Our first campus will open in January 2022 in Williamson County, and we will open multiple locations across the Southeast by fall 2022.”

Claypool created Educational Services of America, now ChanceLight, in 1999 and built the company to more than 170 schools and programs in 20 states, reaching some 15,000 students daily taught by 2,500 teachers and staff with $165 million in revenue. He is a frequent speaker at education industry events and for years served as a sponsor and judge for the Milken-Penn GSE Education Business Plan Competition. Claypool was named one of Nashville’s most admired CEOs and was named E&Y’s Entrepreneur of the Year for Social Responsibility in 2016. Along with McLaughlin, Claypool has written two books. He began his career working as a child abuse investigator and foster child advocate for the state of Tennessee. In keeping with that, GPA will support the education of foster children as its charitable mission.

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