Arthur Baehr is running for school director in the Abington School District in Montgomery County. He is a registered Republican and currently retired. Previously he worked for the United States Geological Survey as a hydrologist.
Why are you running for school board?
Abington’s schools are of fundamental importance and a magnet to our community. As a 30-year resident, with two adult children who attended Abington schools, I have benefited from this quality school system. I now wish to serve to maintain quality and seek improvement. If elected by my fellow citizens, I will devote the time needed to become resourceful in financial, curricular, and social issues.
What are the most important issues facing your district?
I have attended school board meetings and most comments by parents concern bullying and other discipline issues. This is unfortunate as the focus should be on the educational programs. The top priority of the board is to deliver a quality education for all students. All involved need to be relieved of the behavior overburden to get the most out of our resource expenditure.
A fundamental challenge to teachers, counselors, and administrators is to provide a plan for each student while maintaining ambitious, quality core curricula. Students, in collaboration with their parents/guardians, should be regularly advised to take advantage of course offerings, extracurricular activities, and vocational opportunities. Excessive and inappropriate agendas that distract from the main mission of student achievement need to be deemphasized.
What is your professional background/experience? What skills would you bring to the board?
I served as a project manager and principal investigator for many large projects during my career as a Hydrologist for the United States Geological Survey. If elected, I plan to become an expert in evaluating the costs and benefits of expenditures in all departments. The ratio of administrative costs to instructional delivery will be a consistent focus. I also taught at several local universities delivering instruction from remedial mathematics to graduate engineering. This experience has allowed me to observe, evaluate, and accommodate deficiencies as well as excellence in student preparation. I have coached youth sports and my wife, Debra, was an elementary school teacher. These experiences contribute to my qualifications to serve on the School Board. You can learn more about my campaign on my website.
Have you run for political office previously? Have you been politically active?
This is the first time I have run for office. I have voted in every election since I was 18 years old and am an informed citizen; however, I am a political novice.
Are you running with other candidates?
This November, Abington Township and Rockledge Borough voters will select five new School Board members. I am aligned with four other Republican candidates. For more information, you can review our profiles.
What is the most important role of the school board in your opinion?
The school board is the liaison between the school administration and the electorate. As such, the interests of the community need to be represented. This requires two-way communication to ensure the administration is responsive to citizen concerns and to effectively communicate developments and programs of the administration to the citizens, especially parents.
We contacted the Democratic and Republican committees in Bucks, Chester, Delaware, Lancaster, Lehigh, and Montgomery counties and asked them to share the questions with their school director candidates. Broad + Liberty will post the responses throughout the summer to assist voters in learning about the candidates running in their district. The series is open to any school director on the ballot in November. Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
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