Rev. Zan Wesley Holmes Jr. was honored at the dedication ceremony Friday, Oct. 26 for Zan Wesley Holmes Jr. Middle School, which recently opened and is located at 2939 St. Rita. The school is headed by principal Barbara Moham.

Among the many city leaders present at the ceremony were mayor Mike Rawlings, Dallas ISD superintendent Mike Miles, current and former members of the Dallas Board of Trustees, council members, representatives, religious heads and more.

“It’s important to celebrate when you were born, but it’s equally important to celebrate why you were born,” said Carla Ranger, District 6 Board trustee and the one who nominated Holmes to be the school’s namesake, in opening comments.

Principal Moham interrupted the ceremony to explain that the calming music heard occasionally on the loudspeakers was the students’ sign to change classes.

“We don’t use bells because we don’t want them to become accustomed to a prison mentality. We use soothing music,” Moham said.

Superintendent Miles also spoke, as did many others including grown students whose lives were personally touched by Holmes, but Holmes got the most enthusiastic reception.

Holmes has done many things in his life, including oversee the 1971 desegregation of Dallas ISD schools and serve as senior pastor of St. Luke Community United Methodist Church for almost 30 years.

“Nothing stays won. Everything that we’ve won, we have to win it over and over, and over, and over again,” Holmes said, reiterating his well-known mantra and noting the importance of children in the process.

The environmentally sustainable school holds 1,250 students in grades 6-8 in a 192,086 square foot building. Quotes from Holmes are painted throughout the school, as you can see in the slideshow above.