Applicants being sought for Michigan's top education post

Jennifer Chambers
The Detroit News
Brian Whiston

Lansing — Applications for Michigan’s next state superintendent are being accepted, the State Board of Education announced on Friday.

The board hired the executive search firm Ray & Associates to conduct the search, state education officials said. Those interested in applying can learn more here. The deadline to apply is March 11.

The board will review applications and identify finalists after the window has closed. Public sessions will be held to evaluate and identify potential leading candidates. Closed sessions may be used to discuss applicants who request to remain confidential, state education officials said.

The eight-member board, which is given the responsibility to appoint a state superintendent by the Michigan Constitution, will select candidates to invite for public interviews.

The state superintendent is responsible for the day-to-day management, supervision, and leadership of the Michigan Department of Education.

The top education position opened last spring after the death of then-state Superintendent Brian Whiston

As state superintendent, Whiston set a priority to make Michigan a Top 10 education state in 10 years, working with educators, students, parents, businesses and policy leaders in Michigan.

Sheila Alles has been the interim state superintendent.

The Detroit News reported Wednesday that Michigan ranks “dead last” among all states in revenue growth for K-12 schools since voters approved property tax and finance Proposal A in 1994, according to a report by researchers at Michigan State University.

The MSU findings are another blow to an increasingly dire educational outlook for Michigan. According to analyses of national testing data, Michigan students are performing among the bottom 10 percent of states.