Loranger Memorial School Principal Matthew Foster sits outside the school late last week. LIZ GOTTHELF/Journal Tribune

OLD ORCHARD BEACH — New Loranger Memorial School Principal Matthew Foster says the Old Orchard Beach school is the perfect fit for him.

Foster, 36, began his career in education more than a decade ago as an eighth-grade science and math teacher, then moved to southern Maine for a position at the math department at Noble High School in North Berwick to be closer to his now wife, Caitlin, a third-grade teacher in the York School Department.

Foster’s last position was as assistant principal at Newmarket Junior/Senior High School in Newmarket, New Hampshire.

Loranger Memorial School serves students in grades three to eight, and had 313 enrolled students last school year, according to data from the Maine Department of Education.

“It’s a great match,” said Foster. “I’ve never wished a summer away like I did this past summer.”

Foster grew up in the town of Dexter, where, like Old Orchard Beach, schools were a central part of the community. His background growing up in Dexter and working in Newmarket were also good preparation for working in a school department the size of Regional School Unit 23, which oversees schools in Old Orchard Beach.

Having worked at a school serving grades six through 12, the uniqueness of a school like Loranger, which serves middle school and elementary school students, was quite a draw, said Foster.

Foster has goals of one day being a superintendent, and having a background working with middle and high schools, he is eager to work with younger students as well at Loranger to broaden his experience to prepare him for taking the next step.

“I consider myself a life-long learner,” he said.

Foster said at Newmarket he knew every family and every student by name, and is looking forward to getting to know the students  as well as the staff at Loranger,

Foster and his wife have two children, and they enjoy spending time outdoors including camping and going to the beach.

Staff Writer Liz Gotthelf can be reached at 780-9015 or by email at [email protected].

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