Some teachers in Dallas spent Monday hitting the streets and going door-to-door. Their goal was reminding students and parents the first day of school is Monday, August 28. It is the first time Dallas Independent School District launched a large-scale neighborhood walk initiative.
“Hey how are you doing,” a group of teachers said as they waved to neighbors.
Lincoln High School teachers and staff were among those walking the community. They split up in nine groups with community members from the non-profit group Urban Specialists. For some teachers, the goal was to reclaim students. The group’s main focus was reminding families the first day of school is quickly approaching.
“I actually came out and seen all of these teachers out here,” said parent Chantaa Modica as she saw the group of teachers walking along her street. “Now it shows me someone is concerned about the students.”
Parents and community members know there is a heightened level of concern around Lincoln High School this upcoming year. Test scores at the South Dallas campus need to be improved. Dallas ISD is adding more resources to help with those efforts.
“This is very important,” said teacher Kara Crayton. “Especially in this community, because now, the students actually get to see us outside of school, other than a vigil, or a memorial.”
Neighbors say Lincoln’s campus sits in the center of a high crime area. At the corner of Elsie Faye Heggins Street and Malcolm X Boulevard, memorials to victims of drive-by shootings have been building for months.
”The senseless crime puts everybody in danger,” said Gary Walker with Urban Specialists.
The non-profit is partnering with Lincoln High and other schools to provide mentors.
Walker said, ”I just believe that what we are doing is needed. It’s helpful, and it’s making a lot of sense.”
The neighborhood walks are allowing school staff and families a chance to engage, while breaking barriers.