Lou Steigerwald, Ed. S.

  • School Superintendent in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula
  • Plant Wrangler/Gardener
  • Middling Gamer

Implausible Solutions for Michigan Education

Ross Douthat of The New York Times has been presenting a series of articles that suggest ways of approaching difficult national challenges that he calls, “deliberately implausible ideas.” These particular columns approach topics with answers that are sure to irritate all sides of any selected issue. Today I am presenting solutions to Michigan’s education matters in a similar manner.

Your Taxes are Paying for Hobbies

The following article was written collaboratively with Craig Allen, who is the Superintendent of Breitung Schools. The opinions expressed here are our own.

Our tax dollars are increasingly paying for boutique classes attended in segregated settings for homeschooled families. Homeschool parents, who do not want their children to attend school with children in their communities, are being catered to by public school districts who are finding workarounds and loopholes in Michigan’s school funding rules. The result of this is that funds are being drawn from the school aid fund to create these classes, which impacts what neighborhood public schools are able to offer.

In Praise of Politicians

The disappointing, soul-crushing cynicism about politicians and politics has left no oxygen and no apparent energy for discussion of what a good politician is and the importance of politicians in general to a healthy democracy.

If democracy is to survive, politicians are a necessary and required element of the system. The desire to serve the public good is a respectable and honorable goal which merits more credit than it receives. It is likely that there are fine examples of these type of folks in every one of our localities.

Mr. Trump Must Hold Russia Accountable

Our nation was founded in order to be free of foreign intervention in the affairs of its people and its political processes. In the Revolutionary War, patriots valiantly fought and died for the right to hold democratically determined elections. Our men and women have laid down their lives in wars since in order to preserve and protect our nation and our right to elect the citizens who will lead us. Russia’s intervention in our presidential election by hacking into private computers and then releasing stolen material to serve its own interests is at the very least criminal and quite possibly a new and wholly unacceptable act of modern war. President-elect Trump’s lassies-faire attitude on this matter so far is troubling. As the soon to be leader of this nation and its people, Mr. Trump should be outraged if any foreign power intruded in any American election.

Legislative End-Run around Wolf Hunting is a Dangerous Precedent

Before leaving Lansing during the recent Lame Duck session of Michigan’s congress, the Michigan House and Senate passed legislation permitting wolf hunting and sent the package to Gov. Snyder’s office for his signature. The governor should not sign the bill.

Even though I did not agree with the outcome of the 2014 vote in which Michigan voters struck down wolf hunting in Michigan, I do not believe that legislators should then use their power to undermine a result that clearly showed the will of the electorate.

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