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Dallas ISD Invests in South Dallas School in Hopes of Helping Neighborhood Prosper

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An $80 million dollar new school building is headed to Cedar Crest in South Dallas.

It will be named after late civil rights pioneer John Lewis.

The new campus will focus on social justice issues as part of its curriculum and work to increase connections to the surrounding community.

Principal Sharon Evans Jackson said the students at the school will connect with seniors in the community and work to give back.

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"This is an opportunity to say to this community 'we are a part of you and you are a part of us,'" said Jackson.

Jackson wants to revamp the curriculum to focus on social justice issues as well.

NBC 5 found seniors in the neighborhood like Robert White who is 93-years-old and says he's watched his neighborhood change for the worse over the years and students need a strong education to break free from challenges they face.

"They have everything around here, drug houses and everything," said White.

Community members say the naming of two pioneers in civil rights on the building will make an impact on students.

"Names do matter and when our future can walk in this building and see the name John Lewis that does mean something," said Jane Hamilton.

The school will open in the next two or three years.

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