Sparta welcomes Matthew Beck as new superintendent of schools

Sparta. Matthew Beck is currently the chief school administrator for Fredon.

Sparta /
| 18 Mar 2021 | 05:32

After a long search, Sparta Township has found its new superintendent of schools.

The school board on March 2 appointed the Fredon chief school administrator, Matthew Beck, to a three-year contract beginning on June 1. He will be paid $189,000 per year on a contact that runs through June 30, 2024.

“I plan to work with the board, administration, staff, and community and build on Sparta’s historical success as we take the school district to the next level,” Beck said.

The school board’s vote was unanimous with board of education member Michael McGovern abstaining.

“It pleases me tonight that this board is going to be appointing Mr. Beck as the new superintendent,” said school board member Robert Zywicki. “The phrase that sticks out to me is when he said, “triangulation of assessment, instruction, and curriculum are the most important thing for student accomplishment.”

Beck has been the chief school administrator in Fredon since 2018. In August 2020 he signed a five-year contract with Fredon that came with an annual salary of about $155,000.

He was previously the superintendent in the Andover Regional School District and had also served as the assistant superintendent for curriculum, programs, and adult education at Sussex County Technical School.

The former superintendent, Michael Rossi Jr., left the district for personal reasons in June 2020. Assistant Superintendent Patrick McQueeney stepped up to serve as acting superintendent in the interim, and has been guiding the district through the reopening process during the Covid-19 pandemic.

“Mr. McQueeney has assumed the lead role for the Sparta school district during the most difficult time in the history of public education, and I look forward to working with him,” Beck said.

McQueeney will continue as the acting superintendent until Beck takes over on June 1.

“My opinion is what has happened over the course of the past year, I have the utmost respect for Mr. McQueeney for taking on the job at a time when you couldn’t possibly make the right choice for everyone,” said Sparta Mayor Christine Quinn. “It is unbelievably difficult, and I think he really rose up, and we should all be really thankful.”