Abstract : Let $q$ be a power of $16.$ Every polynomial $P \in {\mathbb F}_q[t]$ is a strict sum $$ P = A^2+A + B^3+C^3+D^3+E^3. $$ The values of $A,B,C,D,E$ are effectively obtained from the coefficients of $P.$ The proof uses the new result that every polynomial $Q \in {\mathbb F}_q[t],$ satisfying the necessary condition that the constant term $Q(0)$ has zero trace, has a strict and effective representation as: $$ Q = F^2 + F + tG^2. $$ This improves for such $q$'s and such $Q$'s a result of Gallardo, Rahavandrainy, and Vaserstein that requires three polynomials $F,G,H$ for the strict representation $Q = F^2+F +GH.$ Observe that the latter representation may be considered as an analogue in characteristic $2$ of the strict representation of a polynomial $Q$ by three squares in odd characteristic.