Dr. Dan Dukes is now the assistant superintendent of curriculum and instruction. In his new position, he will oversee studies on every campus in the district. Dukes is currently planning for the 2019-2020 school year.
Beginning his career in education as a teacher in another school district, Dukes later gained proficiency in special education, after meeting his now wife who is deaf. Dukes became a principal for a school for the deaf in Washington D.C. then moved to Abilene in 2010. He has since been an administrator in several positions in AISD.
“I really, really enjoyed working with kids who struggled with behavior or kids who make poor choices, ’cause I just see it as a poor choice not a problem child or anything like that.” said Dukes.
Dukes said he sees as education as a means of moving forward–meaning prioritizing new techniques and technology in the classroom. Dukes mentioned educations works as a pendulum—moving to and from strategies as they fail or succeed.
“We can’t just sit back and expect what worked for us when we were in school works for today’s learners,” said Dukes.
While he said he realizes standardized testing and numbers are important in terms of monitoring progress in the classroom, he wants instructors to instill a kind of “invisible curriculum” based on good citizenship and thoughtfulness. He said instructors should base their teachings on helping the entire child.
“How do we come together and educate the whole child?” said Dukes. “Because not only do we want our students to graduate, but we want them to become very productive citizens in our community.”