Tarpening seeks reelection to school board

Angie Talken
Linn County Leader

Mandy Tarpening is seeking re-election to the Brookfield R-III School Board on April 6. 

Elected in 2018, Tarpening said she hopes to continue the work she has started along with other members, should she be re-elected. 

"If I am able to retain my seat on the Brookfield R-III Board of Education I will continue to stand up for students and parents and their right to quality education for all children," she said. "As well as continue to advocate for our teachers, administrators and staff as they are a critical component of quality education that our children are receiving. Above all I want to continue to be a link between our school system and the Brookfield community."

Mandy Tarpening.

The Hannibal native said she has been honored to work hand-in-hand with other community leaders while serving Brookfield as a whole.

"I have truly been blessed to be a part of the Brookfield R-III Board of Education over the last three years. As my call to ministry has moved me to different communities, my two oldest children have been a part of three different school systems," she said. "This has given me a unique perspective, as I see that our district is on a positive path that should be celebrated. It continues to be an honor to give back to our community in this position as an example of love, service and commitment.

As many rural communities face lower enrollment, Tarpening said Brookfield is doing well at working to address possible funding changes.

"As with any rural community, we continue to plan for lower enrolment as fewer families move back to rural areas to raise their children. It is a constant balancing act of not sacrificing quality as federal and local funds change in the future," she said. 

During the last year, the dedication of school administration and staff has been vital in keeping students in the classroom, and she noted, they should all be recognized for their hard work and dedication. 

"The biggest asset of the Brookfield R-III School District is the commitment to “Teach, Learn, Grow . . . Every Day!” Our educators and administrators have gone above and beyond throughout the 2020-21 school year to provide in-seat instruction as many days as physically possible. With the cooperation of students and their families, our students have had the opportunity to interact with their peers and teachers in person," she said. 

Tarpening is a 1995 graduate of Hannibal High School. In 1999 she received a Bachelor of Arts degree in Religion and Philosophy with a minor in music from Culver-Stockton College; in 2010 she received a Master of Divinity from Central Baptist Theological Seminary. in 2015 she began her service as the Senior Pastor of the First Christian Church.

She is a member of the Brookfield R-III Board of Education, Brookfield Lions Club, P.E.O. Chapter A.G., the Beta Sigma Phi Sorority, Y.M.C.A. Board of Directors, Past Chair and Vice-Chair of the Ministries in Linn County, and was recently elected to the Brookfield Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors. 

She and her husband, Terry have three children who attend Brookfield schools.