Photo provided by Diane Blain Ed Skiba retired June 27 as the assistant superintendent of educational services. He’s pictured with former Chippewa Valley High School principal Jerry Davison.

Photo provided by Diane Blain Ed Skiba retired June 27 as the assistant superintendent of educational services. He’s pictured with former Chippewa Valley High School principal Jerry Davison.

Photo provided by Diane Blain


CVS assistant superintendent retires

Spent 44 years in education

By: Alex Szwarc | C&G Newspapers | Published June 28, 2019

 Ed Skiba, pictured in 1981, recently retired from Chippewa Valley Schools after 44 years in education. Back then, Skiba was a music teacher at Chippewa Valley High School.

Ed Skiba, pictured in 1981, recently retired from Chippewa Valley Schools after 44 years in education. Back then, Skiba was a music teacher at Chippewa Valley High School.

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MACOMB TOWNSHIP/CLINTON TOWNSHIP — From the time Ed Skiba began working at Chippewa Valley Schools until now, it’s always been a family to him.

Holding back tears, he said every teacher cared about everyone else.

“We worked hard and we played hard together,” he said. “Any time someone was hired in, we made sure we welcomed them and made them feel part of the fold. It was like being in another family.”

Skiba served Chippewa Valley Schools for 29 years. First as a teacher, then an assistant principal prior to joining the administrative staff as the executive director of secondary education and his current position, assistant superintendent of educational services.

His last day was June 27, ending a 44-year career in education.

Retirement plans for the 66-year-old Macomb Township resident include continuing directing the Chippewa Valley High School alumni choir, traveling with his wife Mary, and spending more time with his three grandchildren.

Skiba began teaching in 1976 at Warren Fitzgerald High School and said it was hard to get a job back then, citing a high frequency in layoffs.

After his time at Fitzgerald, Skiba taught at Woodhaven, Warren Consolidated Schools and Warren Woods Tower.

He was a teacher for 11 years, six of which were at Chippewa Valley High School in the 1980s.

He later served as the assistant principal at Chippewa from 1987-1995. From 1995-2004, he worked as an assistant principal of Lincoln Middle School, part of Van Dyke Public Schools. He returned to Chippewa Valley Schools in 2004 in his current position.

“Ed as a co-worker is fun to be around,” Chippewa Valley Schools Superintendent Ron Roberts said. “He also has a strong sense of mission and believes deeply in the power of public education. He sees it as a changemaker.”

Roberts said Skiba was instrumental in the establishment of ninth-grade centers in the district.

“It was not just about opening doors and saying here is a building for ninth-graders,” Roberts said. “It was about what would happen in those building behind those doors.”

Skiba said the district talked about splitting kids up because of space.

“A lot of researched showed more kids fail at the ninth-grade level than any other grade,” Skiba said. “We put programs in place to help kids that were struggling.”

Roberts also said that Skiba has a passion for staff and educators and shares in the growth of the district.

“The work he has done for Chippewa Valley will be a driving force in this district for many years to come,” Roberts said.

Chippewa Valley Schools Board of Education Trustee Andy Patzert remembers back in the day when outdoor smoking was allowed in schools for 18-year-old students.

“In the morning, he was Ed Skiba. After smoking patio, it was Mr. Skiba,” Patzert said. “We all knew not to be in the hallway when smoking patio is over. He had to go out and supervise the smoking patio. It was a mean job.”

When asked why Chippewa was a good fit for him, Skiba said he lives in the district.

“It means that much more when you’re invested in it,” he said. “You’re doing it for your own kids and grandkids.”

Skiba said he wanted to work in the district due to its friendly culture, created by Roberts.

Since he announced his retirement in the fall, Skiba said there has been mixed feelings from the community.

“I truly believe we’re going to miss each other, but they’re happy for me too,” he said.

Although he misses being around kids on a daily basis as a teacher, he knew that as an administrator he could influence all students, not just those in his classroom.

Regardless of what position he was in, Skiba said he always learned from those around him.

“Some of the biggest problems I had to solve, I figured out from kids who gave me the answer,” he said. “I learned the effect poverty and trauma has on learning.”

Skiba said a couple of key moments from his career, that helped shape his legacy, were bringing Chippewa and Dakota high schools together and the creation of the ninth-grade centers.

From his days as assistant principal, he takes pride in solving what he calls a “serious gang problem” at Chippewa Valley High School.

“I cleaned up that mess,” he said.

Don Brosky is replacing Skiba as assistant superintendent of educational services.

“I’d like to express my gratitude to Mr. Skiba for providing leadership to the educational services department,” Brosky said. “He is a mentor to me and a leader throughout the district.”

Brosky began his career in Chippewa Valley Schools in 2001 as the principal of Ottawa Elementary School. He served as the principal of Cheyenne Elementary School for 10 years before his promotion to executive director for elementary education in 2014.

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