STANDISH – Robert Deakin is set to challenge incumbent Todd Delaney for a three-year term as a Standish representative to the School Administrative District 6 Board of Directors.

Deakin, 64, is a resident of Whites Point Road. His daughter, Cici, is a ninth-grader at Bonny Eagle High School. Deakin has worked for more than three decades as an investigator for the U.S. Department of Education. He has also taught high school in China.

“I’ve been inside a lot of different schools all over New England, and I’ve worked with the office for civil rights handling complaints based on race, color, national origin, age, sex, religion,” Deakin said. “I’ve seen problems; I’ve seen disagreements; I’ve seen confused people; I’ve seen complicated issues that involve a lot of parties and needed creative solutions. I’ve resolved quite a few of these myself. I think I bring a broad experience in education to the table here because of that.”

Deakin said he favors an increased focus on study skills throughout the school system. He said he hopes to keep class sizes at a stable level at Steep Falls Elementary School, as well.

“I want to ensure that the students that are in Steep Falls Elementary School are not shortchanged, and have access to high quality instruction through their teachers and also through educational technicians or other resources that may be available to ensure that staffing changes that might take place in Steep Falls don’t adversely affect the students,” he said.

In general, Deakin said, he thinks the district must “do more with less.” Deakin said his goal is to “work within the system to make it better.”

“I come from a generation where I’ve always tried to make the world a better place,” he said. “I may have been one of those who protested against the war at the time when I was younger, but, nonetheless, I got an ROTC scholarship and I served in the U.S. Army as an airborne infantry officer and then as a race relations and psychological operations officer. I love my country.”

“I want to have a strong school system because I know that democracy and the freedom of our country depends on having an educated electorate that understands how to be good citizens as well as having the skills and talents necessary to earn a living and support their family and pursue happiness and their own dream,” Deakin added.

Delaney, 48, has lived on Spear Road for 15 years. He is vice chairman of the board. Delaney, who has served on the board for three years, is the owner and operator of Todd Tech, a software and hardware support firm.

Delaney said he has been motivated to serve on the board by his family experience.

“My mother was an elementary school teacher for 20-plus years, and I have a sister who is profoundly deaf and mentally challenged,” Delaney said. “Having a disabled sister, I saw the impact education had on her. As a parent with a disabled child, who attends school within our district I felt I could use my experience to help my child and all children in the district to make their education the best one possible.”

Delaney said that on the board, he works hard to make every dollar count.

“Knowing firsthand that many of our families are under pressure and struggling every day, we need to respect and preserve our resources,” he said. “I treat every dollar like it’s my own family’s.”

Still, amid an age of austerity, Delaney said, great things are possible in education.

“My political and community interests, including time both observing and three years serving on the school board, has shown me how even with the economic challenges we face we can achieve incredible results for our students,” he said. “I know firsthand we must work together in these difficult times to balance resources and staff to the greatest outcomes for our children’s future.”

Other priorities, Delaney said, are fostering a sense of community and school pride across the school district.


A CLOSER LOOK

Polls are open Tuesday, June 10, at Standish Town Hall on Route 35 from 6 a.m.-8 p.m.



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