Program at Dallas apartment complex will now offer help to older students

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A tutoring center for children in Dallas' Redbird neighborhood is celebrating a new chapter.

The Learning Community opened in 2016 and is staffed by volunteers from the Dallas Police Department and the community.

The center cut the ribbon on an expansion on Tuesday that will allow it to serve even more students.

The renovated apartment was created just for kids. The books, learning tools, and volunteers are all part of a unique collaboration at Cielo Ranch Apartments in South Oak Cliff that aims to help children whose families face a variety of challenges.

"Why is it necessary? Why is it needed? Because those children are getting off the bus going home to do homework they didn't understand,” said volunteer Cheryl Rischer. “Parents couldn't support. Needing resources they didn't have. And they needed other things as well."

On Tuesday, community advocates, the Dallas Police Department and civic, business and faith leaders came together to dedicate the space known as The Learning Community.

"We knew at least on the police side that we were underserving this part of the community,” said Dallas Police Deputy Chief Albert Martinez. “And we wanted to lift it up and be a part of the community in a different way."

"This is an example of what our city needs more and more from top to bottom, left to right and everything in the middle,” said Dallas Councilman Tennell Atkins. “This is where we're serving the kids, the mothers, the families in a way that help them connect to everything positive about the city."