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Education

Dallas ISD Partners With Paul Quinn College To Open International Baccalaureate School

Paul Quinn College sign.
Keren Carrión
/
KERA News
The new IB school will open this fall at Paul Quinn College, which is located in a historically low-income section of Dallas.

For the first time, the Dallas Independent School District is partnering with Dallas’ Historically Black Paul Quinn College to open an International Baccalaureate school in southern Dallas.

The IB campus will open this fall at Paul Quinn College.

“We’re talking about impacting kids in low-income households," said Dallas ISD Trustee Maxie Johnson, who represents the area. "Some feel like they're not going to be able to go to college, or they are excited about college, but they can't afford the tuition. This is a step forward, partnering with an HBCU.”

Paul Quinn’s campus is located in a historically low-income section of Dallas, sitting in what’s also been called a grocery desert — an area where residents have limited access to healthy, affordable food.

Recognizing the need for the educational option of an IB program, Dallas ISD Superintendent Michael Hinojosa said while his district has partnered with Southern Methodist University, A&M Commerce and the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, the district had never partnered with a HBCU, let alone one “in our own backyard.”

Hinojosa said this IB school will follow the model of rigorous standards with high expectations, adding that students from anywhere in Dallas can enter a lottery to attend and there won't be an entrance exam.

He said the school will open this fall with only 75 students in 6th and 7th grade. Eventually, it’ll include grades up to 12th. Students can earn up to 40 college credits and graduates can matriculate to Paul Quinn or other colleges and universities.

“A vision is a dream with a deadline,” Hinojosa said, “and you can’t sit around and whine. You’ve got to do something and make things better for your community.”

The plan is to name the campus for Frederick Douglass Haynes, the pastor of Dallas’ Friendship West Baptist Church, who became nationally-known for his social justice advocacy.

Haynes, who attended the Wednesday announcement in front of Paul Quinn’s campus, said he could barely find the words to express his appreciation for this honor. He called education the great equalizer.

“I receive this honor humbled, blown away, I’m trippin’ and so y’all forgive that last language, because that’s not worthy of education. But right now I’m straight trippin’ boo, so thank you so much.”

Naming a Dallas school for Pastor Haynes goes against current district rules, but trustees are expected to make an exception in this case.

Got a tip? Email Reporter Bill Zeeble at bzeeble@kera.org. You can follow him on Twitter @bzeeble.

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