Lou Steigerwald, Ed. S.

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

It’s spring and testing season is soon upon us!

High stakes testing and whether once annual tests are worth the time, effort, and costs of such testing has come under a great deal of scrutiny and question throughout our nation. Michigan recently changed from administering the MEAP test to grades 3-9 in the fall to the new M-Step exam which is now given in the spring. Despite the change to a new test, the same questions about the value of any test given one time a year are still relevant. Superintendents in Dickinson and Iron Counties are asking similar questions and they believe the reasons for questioning such tests are valid and that there is a better way and a better battery of tests that should be tried in our schools.

Who needs to do their job? Nobody!

Because I did not vote for the current governor and because I do not like many of the policies he and the Republican legislature pass, I have decided that I will not, from now and until the public elects the people I believe should be in office, do my job. I mean, I’ll show up and sit in my office and interact with my fellow workers…but get anything done? What? Why?

Michigan Burning

In Nolan Finley’s article in the Detroit News today, Mr. Finley accuses the folks involved in the water mess in Flint of doing little but point fingers. While doing a fair amount of finger pointing himself, Mr. Finley is correct that little has been done to actually correct the situation. What Mr. Finley avoids pointing out is that so little is being done in large part due to the current leadership in Lansing in every chamber of elected government. This is not new. Because too many Republicans have taken a pledge to never raise taxes, regardless of challenges, the party cannot provide the leadership the state so sorely needs in many areas. Michigan residents should be appalled at the national and international image of our state being created by the pitiful level of cowardly non-leadership on display in Lansing.

On yesterday’s race

When it comes to running I have at least learned that I am running my own race.  This took a very long time!  Since last fall I have been in disagreement with one shin and how it should function in a pain free manner.  An MRI shows it’s not shin splints.  The doc blames it on age and years of prior running.  As I do not like that answer, I will work on proving him wrong.

Technology, schools, and kids

Because students in our district are issued iPads between grades 3-12, we get a lot of questions about electronic devices in school.  While individually issued technology is a new wrinkle in school for parents, for the generation of kids in school expect to live and work in tech rich environments, it is just the way the world is.  Schools vary in their approaches to technology, here is what we have decided to do in our district and why.

Flint, DPS, and the State of Schools in Michigan

Recent revelations about the Flint water crisis and conditions in Detroit Public School buildings are emblematic of the poor leadership of Governor Snyder and Senate and State Representatives in Lansing. Citizens throughout our state should take notice and offense at the terrible harm to our state’s reputation on the national and international stage. The Flint and Detroit tragedies will not be the end of poor outcomes if Michiganders do not demand more realistic and responsible governance from Lansing.

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