Charles W. Gardner, Ed.S is currently Principal of Sandy Springs Charter Middle School. Mr. Gardner has led the implementation of 1:1 technology for 900 students and the implementation of an Engineering course including robotics and 3D printing. Additionally, he has created innovative learning spaces and implemented a STEAM Academy utilizing the Design Thinking model developed by the Stanford University Institute of Design or d.school. Furthermore, he has engaged students by creating opportunities ranging from musical theater productions to a club where students design, build, and program drones.
Previously, Mr. Gardner served as a turnaround Principal at Frank McClain Success Academy in College Park, Georgia. His leadership and focus on culture resulted in the graduation rate rising 31% between 2013-2015 and continued success after his departure. McClarin was one of the state’s lowest performing schools when he took the helm and was recognized as a model school in 2017 by the International Center for Leadership in Education.
Mr. Gardner presented at the Georgia Charter Schools Association Conference on shared leadership. Additionally, he has presented on multiple topics to Principals and Assistant Principals in the Fulton County School District. Most recently, he presented on transforming culture at the 2017 ASCD National Conference. Mr. Gardner is co-founder and moderator of the #CultureEd twitter chat allowing teachers and school leaders the opportunity to engage in a weekly conversation on school culture. Guest moderators include Todd Whitaker, Steve Gruenert, Lavonna Roth, Bethany Hill, Bobby Dodd, Eric Sheninger, Tom Murray, Jeff Zoul, Neil Gupta, and Todd Nesloney.