Open main menu

The Michigan Department of Education (MDE) is a state agency of Michigan, in the United States. The MDE oversees public school districts in the state. The department is governed by the State Board of Education. The State Board of Education was first provided for in the Constitution of 1850 and currently exists through the provisions of Article VIII, Section 3, of the Constitution of 1963. The state board is composed of eight members [2] nominated by party conventions and elected at-large for terms of eight years, with two members being elected at each biennial state general election. The governor is authorized to fill vacancies on the state board and also serves as an ex officio member of the state board, without the right to vote. The Superintendent of Public Instruction is appointed by the board for a term to be determined by the board, to serve as its chair, without the right to vote.[3]

Department of Education
MDE Logo.jpg
Michigan Department of Education Logo
Department overview
Headquarters608 West Allegan Street, Lansing[1]
Ministers responsible
  • Casandra E. Ulbrich, Board President
  • Pamela Pugh, Board Vice President
  • Michelle Fecteau, Board Secretary
  • Tom McMillin, Board Treasurer
  • Tiffany Tilley, NASBE Delegate
Department executive
  • Shelia Alles, Interim Superintendent of Public Instruction
  • Scott Koenigsknecht, Deputy Superintendent, P-20 System and Student Transitions
  • Kyle Guerrant, Deputy Superintendent, Finance Operations
  • Venessa Keesler, Deputy Superintendent, Educator, Student, and School Supports
Child agencies
  • Library of Michigan
  • Michigan School for the Deaf
Key document

The department is currently led by Interim Superintendent of Public Instruction Sheila Alles following the death of Superintendent Brian Whiston who had been appointed in 2015.[4][5][6] As the principal executive officer of the Department of Education, the Superintendent sits on the Governor's Cabinet, the State Administrative Board, and acts as chair and a non-voting member of the State Board of Education. The Superintendent advises the Legislature on education policy and funding needs, as defined by the State Board of Education. The Superintendent is responsible for the implementation of bills passed by the Legislature and policies established by the State Board of Education. The Superintendent is a spokesperson for education in the state. The Superintendent also is the primary liaison to the United States Department of Education and other federal agencies.[7]

Major departmental responsibilities include: educator preparation and certification; providing technical assistance to schools in the areas of education improvement and innovation, special education, grants, transportation, health and food programs; statewide student assessment; school accountability; career and technical education; early childhood learning; distribution of state school aid; and overseeing the distribution and use of federal education program funding. The department also operates the Library of Michigan and the Michigan School for the Deaf in Flint.[8]


  1. ^ MDE - Contact Information. Michigan Department of Education. Retrieved on April 2, 2018.
  2. ^ State Board of Education Members. Michigan Department of Education. Retrieved on April 2, 2018.
  3. ^ Article VIII, Section 3 of the Constitution of Michigan (1963)
  4. ^ "State Board of Education Selects Sheila Alles as Interim State Superintendent". Retrieved 2018-05-14.
  5. ^ "State Superintendent Brian Whiston Passes Away Following Battle with Cancer". Retrieved 2018-05-14.
  6. ^ "State Board Selects Whiston for Next State Superintendent". The Michigan Department of Education. March 18, 2015.
  7. ^ MDE - Superintendent. Michigan Department of Education. Retrieved on April 22, 2009
  8. ^ "Michigan Manual" (PDF). Michigan Legislature. 2017–2018.CS1 maint: Date format (link)

External linksEdit