MEMPHIS, Tenn. — School district leaders, students, and parents gathered Thursday to celebrate the grand opening of a new community school in Grahamwood that provides services and support to families.

It’s been since 2014 that Belle Forest became the first community school in the Memphis-Shelby County school district. Nearly a decade later, MSCS is ushering in Treadwood Middle School, its second community school with resources for students and parents.

“We get to witness the best of both worlds, community, and school.  To everyone in this room, it has been a long time coming, but a change has come,” said MSCS Board Chair Althea Greene.

“The work of a community school really is about us all coming together for a common good. It’s about us all investing in the future,” said Donnie Hale, Jr. with the Institute of Educational Leadership.

The goal is to remove barriers by bringing in resources to address everything from food insecurities to financial literacy. There are also diaper banks, family workshops, and a backpack program.

“In here there are meals, meals to take them to through the weekend. That’s one thing we want to do. We don’t want to bring attention to the child, but we want to give attention to the child,” said Dr. Lori Phillips, Chief of Student, Family, and Community Affairs. “We want to get it right. We want to get it right for our students.”

“Wrap around services for our students, it gives them hope and connections,” said MSCS Interim Superintendent Toni Williams.

District leaders say they pushing to have six additional community schools by the end of December.