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West Texas State School

Julia Cauble Smith General Entry

West Texas State School, formerly West Texas Children's Home of Pyote, is located on Interstate Highway 20 at the southwestern edge of Pyote in central Ward County. In 1958 the 697th Air Control and Warning Squadron began operations at the site of the old Pyote Air Base (see PYOTE AIR FORCE STATION) on University of Texas land. When that radar base closed in 1963, the Texas Youth Council began work on a children's home to be founded on the location. The buildings, constructed as housing for the air force and radar bases, were still in good shape. In 1965 the Texas legislature appropriated $200,000 for renovation and purchase of equipment to found the institution. West Texas Children's Home of Pyote opened for dependent and neglected children in 1966. In the early 1980s the home changed from an orphanage to a state school for male status offenders. The name was changed to West Texas State School in 1990. The facility consists of brick buildings with dormitory space and recreational facilities for 192 students. A new dormitory to house twenty-four additional students was planned for 1992. High school classrooms are maintained throughout the year on the campus to allow students the opportunity to work toward general equivalency diploma certification.

Ward County Historical Commission, Ward County (Dallas: Taylor, 1980?).

The following, adapted from the Chicago Manual of Style, 15th edition, is the preferred citation for this entry.

Julia Cauble Smith, “West Texas State School,” Handbook of Texas Online, accessed October 21, 2020,

Published by the Texas State Historical Association.