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Duane Limbaugh: Steering White Deer ISD Towards a Future of Opportunity

Posted Date: 04/08/2024

Duane Limbaugh: Steering White Deer ISD Towards a Future of Opportunity



The Pampa News


By Miranda Ellis

In the quaint town of White Deer, Texas, Superintendent Duane Limbaugh is shaping a future brimming with potential for the students of White Deer ISD. With a career that has spanned over three districts and a passion for educational excellence, Limbaugh’s tenure is characterized by strategic partnerships, community engagement, and a forward-thinking approach to education.

“I was hired last January a year ago,” Limbaugh recalls, marking the beginning of his journey with White Deer ISD. His path to this position was influenced by personal ties to the region. “I’ve got a daughter that came to Texas Tech to run cross country and track, and so that gave my wife and I the opportunity to come up to a better part of the world. And so I was blessed to be able to start applying for positions up here—we got White Deer and I have loved it.”

Upon his arrival, Limbaugh found the P-TECH program already in place, a foundation upon which he would build further. “The number one thing is having P-TECH, which is in our high school, and really putting an emphasis on dual credit,” he explains. Recognizing the program’s potential, he brought in Collegiate EduNation to sponsor it, drawing inspiration from Roscoe ISD’s successful model. “Kim Alexander was the superintendent down in Roscoe that really made a model for rural schools to put things together to make sure that rural students have just as much access as those in the bigger cities,” Limbaugh says, echoing Alexander’s belief that “the only way to break through generational poverty is through education.”

Limbaugh’s ambitions for the district are high. “We’ve got pretty high goals. 90 percent of incoming freshmen will graduate with an associate’s degree. 80 percent will graduate with a bachelor’s, and then 70 percent would get an industrial certification,” he shares. This vision is about more than just academic achievement; it’s about leveling the playing field and offering every student the chance to succeed without the burden of debt.

The superintendent is also proud of the specific trades and degrees that the P-TECH pathways offer. “We’ve got three pathways; a construction and science pathway with welding, we’ve got a health pathway, and then a third one on family and consumer science,” he details. The district’s size allows for a tailored educational experience, ensuring that students can pursue paths that lead to viable careers.

New sports programs are also on the horizon, thanks to the generosity of the community. “So the community really pushed, and we got an enormous donation over the next three years to the costs of starting baseball and volleyball,” Limbaugh says. This initiative is a testament to the community’s commitment to providing a comprehensive educational experience for its students.

Reflecting on his first year, Limbaugh is full of gratitude for the community’s support. “This last year has been phenomenal. The support here has been unbelievable, from parents to community, to business, to the board that’s currently here—I’ve been blown away by the outpouring of support,” he says. “Whatever we want to really do, they get behind it and show up. It’s amazing.”

Looking to the future, Limbaugh is committed to White Deer for the long haul. “White Deer is a special place, and I’m gonna be here for as long as I’m going to be in education,” he asserts. His dedication is also evident in the new robotics program, which promises to grow and evolve. “We started a robotics program. This was our first year to compete and actually, it was Collegian EduNation that paid for it all,” he explains, showcasing the program’s early success and potential for expansion.

Duane Limbaugh’s story at White Deer ISD is one of commitment and vision, driving the district toward a future where every student has the opportunity to excel. His leadership is not just elevating the students of White Deer but also setting a standard for rural education across the region.