Passing of State Superintendent Whiston

Earlier this morning, the Michigan Department of Education issued a statement noting the passing of State Superintendent Brian Whiston. The State Superintendent, appointed to the position in April 2015, was diagnosed with cancer last fall and had been undergoing treatment. On Friday, he went on Long-Term Disability Leave.

The staff of The Education Trust-Midwest joins with the education community, and the students, teachers and parents across Michigan in expressing our deepest condolences to Superintendent Whiston’s family, staff at the Michigan Department of Education, and former colleagues at Dearborn Public Schools and Oakland County ISD.

How Michigan can be a leader in education

The following excerpt is from an article by Amber Arellano that ran in The Detroit News on May 3. Click here for the full article. 

In 2015, the Education Trust-Midwest launched the Michigan Achieves campaign to make Michigan a top 10 education state by 2030. Since then, tens of thousands of Michiganders have enlisted to be part of an action network of organizations, parents and educators getting involved to ensure Michigan’s P-12 education system is no longer declining compared to other states, but again becomes one of the best states in the U.S. for student learning.

The data are clear: Michigan’s education system is facing a true crisis.

High-leverage strategies and investments can change our state’s educational trajectory with the right leadership, focus and commitment. This begins with leadership that supports a coherent, research-based agenda, and is willing to provide the stability and tools necessary to implement this agenda well and provide educators with the supports that they need to succeed.

There are…key priorities that leading education states have embraced, and we believe those strategies will work in Michigan.

  • Strengthen our teacher and principal workforce
  • Invest adequately and equitably
  • Invest smartly and effectively
  • Insisting on meaningful accountability for all major K-12 actors
  • Empower parents with honest information

We can do this. Let’s get started. Join us at

Read the full article here.

Teacher Appreciation Week

When asked to think of the people who made the greatest difference in their life, most will think of at least one teacher: the one who really reached out and connected; the one who brought learning to life.

Each and every day, talented educators in thousands of classrooms across Michigan make a difference in the lives of their students – differences that will last long beyond the school year. This week – teacher appreciation week – we take a moment to thanks the tireless educators who are making such a difference.

Join the effort and #ThankATeacher

Capital Update

The Michigan State Board of Education meets this morning at 9:30am in the Ladislaus B. Dombrowski Board Room of the John A. Hannah Building. The meeting agenda can be found here.

The Senate Education Committee will meet today at noon in Room 1300 of the Binsfeld Building. The agenda will include a discussion of House Bill 4614 (Miller – R) which discusses options for teachers to renew lapsed provisional education certificates, HB5093 (LaFave – R) and HB5355 (Albert -R ) which discuss public school employee retirement funds and HB5379 (Hertel – D) which permits the use of sunscreen under certain conditions.

Noteworthy News

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