LHISD honors Louine Noble in new campus name

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By MIKE EDDLEMAN

Naming new school campuses in Liberty Hill could become a full-time job for the school board over the next decade, but among the most recent selections was one everyone agreed was a fitting legacy for a larger than life figure from the district’s past.

The board selected Louine Noble as the namesake for the district’s fifth elementary campus – the current Intermediate School – to open next fall.

Noble was a long-time teacher, administrator and superintendent through the 1970s and 1980s. Noble passed away in September.

“Our identity is pretty unique, and if our identity is what brought people here, I think they need to understand how that identity was built,” said School Trustee and former district administrator Kathy Major, pointing to Noble’s far-reaching impact on the growth and success throughout the school district. “If what brought you here was the sense of community, if what brought you here was the sense of encouragement, of quality of education, of kids coming first, Louine Noble is the one we can thank for that.”

For Major, Noble was someone who began to set the stage for the excellence expected in Liberty Hill ISD today.

“Mr. (Steve) Snell is an extraordinary superintendent and taking us to a new structure of excellence, and Louine was one of the foundations that this excellence has been laid upon now,” Major said. “We’ve been so lucky in our community in having great superintendents and Louine set the standard.”

The new middle school will be named Santa Rita Middle School and the current Junior High will be renamed Liberty Hill Middle School.

“This was my first experience with this process in Liberty Hill and it was not an easy choice with the selections we received,” Superintendent Steve Snell said. “I want to thank the Board members for the care and thought they put into this process, they did a great job.”

The Board voiced its appreciation for the input it received over the past month from families, staff and the broader community from the district survey that was sent out. The community survey included suggestions ranging from names tied to local history to community leaders and various character traits. After much discussion, the Board came to a united decision, expressing their approval of the final three recommended names of the schools.

Honoring Noble was the highlight of the process for many who knew her well.

“Louine was instrumental with Mr. (Bill) Burden to point the district in a strong direction,” said Major. “She knew her kids, she knew what she wanted for them, she knew they could achieve great things and she was so positive and such a force in this community.”

Noble joined the Liberty Hill Elementary staff as a sixth grade teacher before being named principal in 1976. She continued in her role as elementary principal until 1987, when she was selected to serve as superintendent following the resignation of J.D. Cox. She held that position until 1991.

“Even after she left the superintendent’s job, so many things she did she did for the community,” Major said. “She worked on the snack programs in the summer and was instrumental in that. She helped coordinate the back to school backpack program. She just continued to do things that were best for the children and the community.”

Her impact has been felt over the years, including with other board members including Anthony Buck who Major said was one of the driving forces behind this decision.

“She was one of those people who knew early on that education was dynamic and that if we were going to do right things for kids we had to follow the research and use our common sense in its applications,” Major said. “She really had a wonderful, balanced approach to teaching. She was an absolute warrior for children.”

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