Texas Tech University

Staff Spotlight: James Taliaferro

by Joshua Blount, Editor

In 2016, Best College Reviews ranked the best online high school programs in the nation. Of the 25 schools recognized, TTU K-12 was ranked No. 4 overall and was the highest ranked program in Texas. The success that TTU K-12 experienced last year (and continues to experience today) is due to the efforts of all our faculty, staff and students but in particular is credited to the excellent leadership that facilitates the day-to-day operations at TTU K-12. One such leader is TTU K-12 Superintendent Dr. James Taliaferro.

Dr. Taliaferro has served as the superintendent of TTU K-12 for over five years. During that time, he has helped serve thousands of students seeking to earn an education from anywhere through his dedication and vision for TTU K-12.

As a young educator, Dr. Taliaferro was motivated to teach in a way that would continue the cycle of giving and receiving that he experienced as a student. He began educating students as a band director in both Stratford and Gruver, Texas. After his time as band director, Dr. Taliaferro became a principal. A few years later, he became the superintendent of Stratford ISD. Throughout his various positions, he wanted to provide every student with the opportunity to succeed, just as he had received from his teachers.

After joining TTU K-12, Dr. Taliaferro began his career in supervising online education. The transition from supporting traditional, on-site schools to supporting online students and international partners was an adjustment, but over time he realized that the mission was still the same: "We are here to help kids realize their potential and be successful."

Being a part of TTU K-12 leadership means that Dr. Taliaferro has been closely involved with the major and minor changes that TTU K-12 experiences. One of the most significant changes that TTU K-12 has recently undergone is its name change. Dr. Taliaferro commented, "It came from a need to identify who we are, moving from TTUISD to TTU K-12 really identifies us more as an online district."

Since TTU K-12 is classified as a Special Purpose District and differs in many ways with the qualities of an independent school district, the name change to TTU K-12 is more relevant for the services offered. "We are the same organization, still providing the same services to you," said Dr. Taliaferro.

Dr. Taliaferro's vision for TTU K-12 is to continue to grow and provide friendly, reliable customer support. He believes students and teachers should always feel they are essential to the advancement of TTU K-12. Dr. Taliaferro stated that he wants TTU K-12 to "continue to be customer-friendly so we can affect the change that parents and students need to see, just like we would in a brick and mortar school."

Even years after beginning his career as an educator, Dr. Taliaferro still finds his greatest satisfaction in contributing to the success of others. Whether it is the success of students, teachers or parents, he has proven that he is willing to do whatever it takes to provide the best opportunities to the TTU K-12 community.

Headshot of James Taliaferro
TTU K-12 Superintendent James Taliaferro
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