Mike Stromme heads the school district 2021-22; Frey’s interim replacement begins on July 1st | news
LYNDEN – The Lynden School District Interim Superintendent may have been destined to become an educator.
However, Mike Stromme only began to think about the profession while studying business administration and accounting at university.
“It was a coaching role early in college that got me thinking about this calling,” said Stromme, who will officially take over Jim Frey on July 1st.
Eleven-year-old Superintendent Frey becomes HR director of the fast-growing Lynden Door Inc.
Quite a few educators have said that they did not choose the profession, but that it chose them. Perhaps the same is true for electricity. As the oldest of five growing up siblings, three of Stromme’s siblings are deaf.
“I’ve always worked with them,” he says. “They raised me as a sibling … Mom and Dad were phenomenal parents. We spent a lot of time working with my siblings. “
Less than a decade in his teaching career, Stromme switched to the administrative side of his profession. Since then, he has held several positions – and had several opportunities to see education from all angles. Most recently, he was assistant principal in the Vancouver (Washington) school district.
“I wanted to return to the superintendent,” said Stromme, who also headed the Washougal school district in 2015-2018. “I am very excited about the opportunity to become an interim manager. This is a wonderful way to serve a community in need. I think this year will be a great opportunity. “
Lynden School Board President Steve Jilk said Stromme was selected to replace Frey “because we felt the district needed a person to help us keep momentum in so many different areas of our work . “
“Mike will need to bring his experience in other districts to help us move forward in so many areas that will fully open this fall, while preserving remote opportunities and helping our principals and teachers support students in the best way possible, considering the impact Moving Forward. “of COVID in the past 18 months, are working with new members of the district leadership team and helping us all prepare for next year’s permanent superintendent selection,” said Jilk.
One of Stromme’s priorities for the 2021-2022 school year is to focus on the core curriculum again.
“What is important at Lynden is not only important to us as schools are returning to a new normal,” said Stromme. “We learned from technology. I still believe that personal contact is very important, but we have families with different needs. “
What would make the new school year a success? For Stromme, the connection between each school – five in all in the Lynden district – and their students is crucial.
“Think carefully about our relationships with students and families and how we made this transition,” said Stromme. “Did we create cultures? We create a culture where there is a sense of belonging, a place for students, meet the needs of all students. How did we open doors to students and their families? Create an inviting environment. “
One way Stromme wants to promote this welcoming environment is through weekly visits to schools, he said.
Lynden School board member Kelli Kettels said Stromme was “very approachable.”
“I think he will go out of his way to get to know our children, staff and the community,” she said. “I know there will be challenges in the next school year. However, I believe Mike will be up to the situation. I look forward to working with him and the rest of the board to give our children the best possible year. “