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Superintendent Steve Phophal

Mr. Steve Pophal
School District of Janesville


I am excited to serve as the Superintendent of the School District of Janesville (SDJ). I was born and raised in Wausau, WI, and I am the product of a strong public school system that supported me and helped me learn and grow. My undergraduate degree is from UW-Madison, my graduate degree is from Marian University (Fond du Lac), and my Superintendent credential is from Edgewood College (Madison).

I have served as a social studies teacher and coach (Appleton), athletic director and assistant principal (Sheboygan Falls), principal (Sheboygan Falls, Plymouth and DC Everest) and Director of Secondary Education (DC Everest).

I serve locally on the Board for the United Way of the Blackhawk Region, as well as on the Board of Blackhawk Technical College. Beyond Janesville, I serve on the State of Wisconsin's Charter School Advisory Board, the Wisconsin Association of School District Administrators Governing Board, and I am a Past-President of the Association of WI School Administrators and the National Association of Secondary School Principals

There is exciting growth and development going on within the SDJ, as well as across the community. Teaching and learning is shifting from students sitting passively collecting facts from teachers, to creating content and solving real world problems. Everywhere I go in the district and community I feel a great energy and sense of pride. I will do my best to contribute to this district in a positive way, helping our community to evolve from great to greater. As Superintendent, my promise to students, staff, parents, and the community will be:

  • To ensure every child is loved in a safe, nurturing environment;
  • To ensure every student is known by name, strength, and need;
  • To ensure we graduate students who are happy, innovative problem-solvers, prepared
  • to thrive in a highly competitive global market place;
  • To create a culture of innovation that permeates every classroom of the district;
  • The SDJ will be a place where employees are valued and their voices are heard;
  • To build a destination school district that contributes to employer’s ability to attract and retain talent; and
  • To build community partnerships to support our students and build a thriving Janesville community.

If we are committed to preparing kids for their future, we must be realistic about preparing them to thrive in varied cultures and able to work effectively with people from all different walks of life. The world is changing fast and students deserve to be prepared for their future, not our past.

I feel honored and humbled by the trust the SDJ Board and community has placed in me to be your superintendent. I am coming to this post with a servant’s heart, and a promise to treat people with love and respect.

Please contact me with any questions or comments: