Our policies are broad-based in meaning -- less descriptive of the things we do and more focused on how we conduct business. They reflect the legacy and the culture of NEPHS.
It is important for all members to understand our policies and the reasoning behind them, especially when answering questions or providing information to other NEPHS members, legislators, other home schoolers, and the public. To ensure complete understanding, we encourage discussion of our policies at meetings and other suitable occasions.
Though individuals may have their own thoughts about particular policies, we all should understand the reasoning behind each and support the "spirit" of its intent. When the words "we," "us," and "our" are used in this document, they are intended to refer to all NEPHS members.
NEPHS is guided by certain principles that are presented in the form of policies. Our reasons for having policies can be summarized as follows:
To define our mission, what we are striving to accomplish.
To set forth our philosophy, the moral and ethical principles that guide our actions.
To preserve the unique NEPHS environment by communicating our mission and philosophy to our members who by word and action can reflect and pass them on to others in a consistent manner.
To provide a guide for NEPHS leaders so their decisions and actions will reflect the best interests of our organization.
POLICY #1: Safe Environment
We provide an environment where home schooling moms and dads can find refreshment, comfort, and advice.
Moms are typically the primary teacher in the home school. The pressures of raising a family, maintaining a household, and home schooling can become overwhelming at times. Moms need the support and understanding that only other moms can provide. NEPHS supports an environment that promotes frequent contact between moms.
We encourage fathers to assume the role of principal in the family school, taking responsibility for oversight, encouragement, approval of curriculum, and instruction where possible. We provide opportunities for fathers to sharpen their skills in managing a homeschool, and providing a secure, supportive environment conducive to learning.
POLICY #2: Valued Members
We build our organization around members. The strength of NEPHS is its members, working together with a common purpose. Although methods and procedures are important, and we constantly strive to improve them, our most valuable assets are loyal and capable members. NEPHS requires all members to participate in the organization as a condition of membership.
Our members deserve recognition for their accomplishments and contributions. Activity leaders are responsible for recognizing the accomplishments of those who provide assistance.
POLICY #3: Spirit of Teamwork
We maintain a spirit of teamwork. Throughout NEPHS, we capitalize on the advantages of working together in an informal manner. We act as a cooperative team. Combined efforts, which help any part of our organization, serve to strengthen our entire organization.
Cooperation and teamwork among all our members is necessary for the continued success of our organization. To foster this spirit, we seek to develop meaningful relationships and better communications by having regular and frequent planned individual and group discussions.
POLICY #4: Continuous Improvement
We give each complaint prompt, sincere attention. If overlooked or neglected, even minor misunderstandings can escalate into major dissatisfactions. We try to anticipate and eliminate causes of complaints. In the process of making a decision, we do our best to take action that is fair to both the member and the organization.
NEPHS leaders should invite help and encourage suggestions for improvement. In working together this way, we create an environment of teamwork that benefits our organization and our members. We consider carefully any suggestion that might be of value. If we adopt a suggestion, we give full credit; if we reject it, we explain the reasons. We also encourage feedback on plans that have been implemented, knowing that the people involved can contribute to further improvements.
POLICY #5: Use of Talent
We secure the full benefit of a member's talents and abilities by providing each member with an opportunity to develop further. We recognize that our members make important contributions to our organization. We maintain an environment that enables them to obtain personal satisfaction from their contributions.
We know that our future leaders will come from within our organization. For that reason, we evaluate members for their potential to assume more responsibility and we offer them opportunities to develop their talents.
We expect our leaders to train others. We encourage members to develop their potential by attending training sessions and workshops. We review our own training programs regularly to ensure they are relevant to our current needs.
POLICY #6: Communication
Keeping members informed helps them to understand our objectives and to participate more effectively. To accomplish this, we hold periodic meetings and we employ a variety of media. Besides disseminating information to our members, these communications give recognition to member achievements and encourage teamwork and cooperation.