Best Practices From Exemplary Schools in the Michigan District2 min read

The Michigan District of the LCMS is blessed with terrific students, excellent teachers, and a variety of sizes and locations of great schools. The District recognized St. Matthew Lutheran in Walled Lake and Trinity Lutheran in Clinton Township as Exemplary Schools in 2016. In order to achieve this recognition, a school needed an NLSA visit last year, a recommendation by the visiting team on “best practices” that were exceptional and replicable in other places, the approval of the District Accreditation Commission, and passing a Validation visit by Charles Winterstein, Assistant to the Superintendent of the Michigan District.

Trinity and St. Matthew both exceeded these expectations and were recognized as “Exemplary District Schools.” St. Matthew Lutheran was nominated for the following “Best Practices:”

  1. Unique Apologetics Approach to Upper Grade Religion: Teachers are assisting children in understanding and defending their faith;
  2. Lucy Calkins Writing Process: Test scores indicate students are excelling at writing;
  3. Technology Implementation: Teachers are utilizing Smart Boards, i-Pads, and a variety of software in teaching and learning; and
  4. Unity of Mission between church and School: Often congregations and schools develop a “we vs. they” mentality. St. Matthew has developed a unified approach that extends seamlessly into service opportunities and a shared vision.

Trinity Lutheran was recognized for:

  1. Staff Cohesiveness, professionalism and collegiality: Trinity is intentional in striving to build staff through “Character, Chemistry and Competency;” and
  2. An innovative approach to faith formation: Trinity has developed its own curriculum looking at faith formation and faith milestones as key indicators of progress. Parents are heavily involved in this process.

(Click here to see the video footage of the award being given to both Trinity school and to one of their teachers, Sally Buss).

We thank God for all our Lutheran Schools and the students who daily hear about Jesus from dedicated teachers, administrators and pastors!

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About the Author

Dr. Bruce Braun, emeritus, served many years as Superintendent of Schools for the Michigan District, LCMS.

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