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Graduating from the McKay School's Leadership Preparation Program is one step in Kelepolo's journey to making a positive difference in children’s lives


Born in Hawaii, Everett Kelepolo, principal of Springville Junior High School, lived all over the United States until 11 years ago when he settled in Spanish Fork, Utah. Prior to becoming a principal, Kelepolo coached wrestling and track. He was also head coach at Spanish Fork High School from 1995 to 1999.

After graduating from Southern Utah University in 1991 with a bachelor’s degree in education, he obtained a master’s degree in teaching from the Grand Canyon University in Phoenix, Arizona in 1999. In 2000 Kelepolo was accepted into the Leadership Preparation Program at BYU and graduated a year later. Currently he is working on his doctorate in the Executive Educational Leadership Program at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas.

For his doctorate research, Kelepolo is creating an academy to help education practitioners better understand No Child Left Behind. “No Child Left Behind is a great program,” Kelepolo said. “Unfortunately, a lot of education practitioners do not fully understand its concept. It is a tremendous opportunity for me to be involved in No Child Left Behind and help others better understand it.”

Kelepolo enjoys working with and being an advocate for children. He wants to be an instrument in making a positive difference in children’s lives. “When asked what they teach, most teachers say math, English, science, literature and so forth,” Kelepolo explained. “We don’t teach math or English—we teach children. This is the only way we can make a difference in their lives and make it rewarding.”

Kelepolo has received many awards in his career, including Middle School Principal of the Year by the Utah Association of Secondary School Principals in 2007, Sportsmanship Award of the Year by the Wasatch Front Football Official Association in 1999, and Most Respected Teacher Award by the Spanish Fork High School student body in 1997.

Outside of work and school, Kelepolo enjoys wrestling, playing the guitar, and singing with his family.

June 2007