1974 – BA in Spanish-English (Double Major) from Carroll College (University) in Waukesha, WI
1998 – MA Ed. from Aurora University in Aurora, IL
43 Years Teaching Spanish (38 Years in the Elmbrook School District and 5 Years as a Professor at Concordia University)
My name is Jeff Stark, but I go by “Señor” here at CELA. I truly believe that God spoke to Dr. Galster when he needed a Spanish teacher fast, and reminded him of me. Dr. Galster was my former principal in the Elmbrook District, and I believe it is the will of God for me to be here.
I have lived in Spain, Perú, and Panamá, and have traveled to Mexico, Honduras, Costa Rica, Bolivia, Puerto Rico, and the Dominican Republic. I have been told that my accent sounds South American, but I teach Mexican pronunciation. I have led 11 student travel tours; 2 to Spain, 4 to Mexico, and 5 eighth grade class trips to Washington DC. All except one of those trips was with middle schoolers.
Over my years of teaching, I was student council advisor for 30 years, Key Club advisor, Senior Class advisor, football coach, track coach, forensics coach, musical director, concession stand advisor, and foreign language department chair.
I live in Brookfield. My wife passed away of cancer 5 years ago, but I have two adult sons; Matthew, who’s engaged to be married, and Michael who still lives with me. I enjoy biking, motorcycling, waterskiing, sailing, and reading historical fiction. I am a member of 4 musical groups, 3 singing and a bagpipe band. I supervise a fraternity at Carroll University and I’m a Mason and a Shriner. I just donated my 226th pint of blood.
It would seem like I have no free time, but we spend as much time as possible at our lake house outside of Shawano, that was built by my great-grandfather 117 years ago.
I am very excited about this new direction in my life, working at CELA. I passionately love the Spanish language and culture, and I hope I can bring that love to my students. Starting right at 4K my emphasis will be conversation. I want all of our students to feel comfortable speaking. Each time they have class, ask them what they learned to say. We will use a spiraling curriculum that will start at 4K and each year build upon what they’ve learned before. I have taught at both the middle school levels, so I’m very clear on what needs to be taught in a first year class, and what high school teachers will expect of their students entering Spanish 2.
When you visit CELA , stop and see each of the 5 rooms we use for Spanish. Each one has a cultural theme that we will be exploring during the year.
I am excited to be here. In my first few days your students have been an absolute joy. I thank God every day for leading me to CELA.