Neal Post is a former Canyon Laker and graduate of Temescal Canyon High School (2001) who has come back to make a difference in the lives of local young people. The eldest son of Canyon Lakers Corky and Rita Post, Neal is back at his alma mater to teach AP World History and to coach Titan football and baseball. (TCHS is the school Canyon Lake students attend unless they get transfers to Elsinore or Lakeside High School.)
Neal also serves as advisor to the TCHS Photography Club and, as such, is looking forward to helping his students provide photos to The Friday Flyer of homecoming activities taking place this weekend.
One of the interesting aspects of Neal’s story is that he is one of four teachers in his family, three of whom currently work for the Lake Elsinore Unified School District. His mom, Rita, started her teaching career in 1988 as a student teacher at Machado Elementary School. As Teacher on Special Assignment (TOSA), she helped with the opening of Canyon Lake Middle School; then went on to become principal at Elsinore Elementary School in 2006, where she still works.
Neal’s brother, Bradley, currently teaches 5th grade at Machado and is assistant varsity coach of the reigning CIF Champion TCHS Girls Soccer Team. His sister, Ashley, lives in downtown LA and is a special education teacher at the Larchmont Charter School. Dad Corky Post is a national sales director for Zephyr Tool Group.
Neal says, “My parents and siblings have been and continue to be incredibly important to me and it is a blessing to have them all living close.” He also says it’s “pretty awesome” to be teaching at his former high school along side many of the teachers he had as a student.
Neal started teaching at TCHS in 2010 after four years teaching at Terra Cotta Middle School. But more than where he teaches is why he teaches.
“The most rewarding part of teaching has always been the connections I get to make with students while helping them find their own way to success inside and outside of the classroom,” he says. “It is hard to explain seeing the joy of my students when they get accepted to their dream college; to see them earn that athletic scholarship they have worked so hard for; to see them volunteer to serve our country in the armed forces or to see them get a job right out of school because of the support of our school’s programs like the Health and Medical Careers Academy.”
Three years ago, Neal took on another responsibility after being asked by some of his students to be the advisor of a new Photography Club on campus. Neal has enjoyed photography as a personal hobby for many years and lately has expanded into some new areas, including running a photo booth with his wife at the weddings of friends and shooting senior portraits. His work can be seen on Facebook at Neal Post Photography and The Booth by Neal Post.
Neal and his wife, Laurie, have been married for six years and have two children, 4 and 19 months. They live in Menifee. Neal says, “I am blessed and beyond thankful to have such a supportive wife and kids, because teaching and coaching two sports takes up a lot of time and they ensure that I get to do what I love.”
About the Photography Club request Neal says he “jumped at the chance” as a means to share his knowledge and love of photography with the 40-plus students. “It has been very rewarding thus far and I am continually blown away by the talent and creativity of some students.”
He would like to acknowledge the generous donations the Photography Club received over the summer through a Go Fund Me campaign. So far $660 has been raised to purchase two digital SLR cameras and lenses that can be checked out by club members. “This allows our club to be more inclusive for students who don’t have access to a SLR camera,” says Neal.
The fundraising campaign is continuing at gofund.me/tchsphotoclub to raise money for a printing budget. The club also welcomes donations of old digital SLR cameras in working condition.
Neal says, “We run a ‘Photo of the Month’ contest on campus and the winning photo gets printed, framed and displayed on campus. We plan to hold a gallery at the end of the year to show off our school’s creativity and talent.
Neal says he also is grateful the club will be able to partner with The Friday Flyer to give the students a chance to “contribute something to the real world.” For more information, contact Neal at firstname.lastname@example.org.