Stephen Gaarder (R)
Candidate for Board of Education
My Family and I moved to Middletown ten years ago from out of state. My wife Susan Hadley is a family physician, my daughter Nora is in eighth grade at Woodrow Wilson Middle School, and my son Jascha is in third grade at Farm Hill School. I work as a program evaluation consultant helping healthcare, education, and social service organizations measure and improve program effectiveness. My wife and I are committed to public school education and we both believe that Middletown is a terrific place to raise a family.
I have served for six years on the Middletown School Readiness Council and Five years of the Opportunity Knocks Coalition for Middletown Children. I serve on the Opportunity Knocks steering committee, have been an active member of the Farm Hill School PTA for eight years including two as its Treasurer during which I secured a $5,000 grant for new playground equipment. I also served as Treasurer of my children’s preschool for two years.
Qualifications for position
My formal training and experience in program evaluation with its focus on what works and why as well as the twelve years of full-time work teaching at the university level give me a unique combination of skills and perspective to be an effective member of the Middletown Board of Education.
Reasons for running
To be an effective advocate for the educational interests of Middletown children; to be a voice for transparency, integrity and reason on the school board; to ensure that the long-term interests of Middletown are served by acting as a proper “check and balance” on the actions of central administration.
Ensure that we serve the educational needs of all Middletown school children
Improve the morale of school district staff