ECU to create laboratory school with Pitt County Schools

Using the Smart Board East Carolina University is one of eight UNC system schools identified to create and operate a laboratory school to help under-achieving elementary students perform better.

UNC President Margaret Spellings announced Nov. 1 that ECU along with Appalachian State University, North Carolina Central University, UNC-Charlotte, UNC-Greensboro, UNC-Pembroke, UNC-Wilmington and Western Carolina University are candidates to establish and operate laboratory schools. The system has 15 institutions that offer educator-preparation programs.

ECU has proactively prepared by initiating talks about a partnership with the Pitt County Schools to meet the new legislation, College of Education Dean Grant Hayes said.

“We look forward to working with the Pitt County Schools on this project,” he said.

The laboratory school will be a demonstration site to provide exposure and training for teachers and principals to address challenges in high-needs schools, and be used to determine best practices, provide educational research and foster professional development.

“We are pleased to partner with East Carolina University’s College of Education on this project,” said Dr. Ethan Lenker, superintendent of Pitt County Schools. “We believe that the laboratory school will provide a tremendous opportunity for our students, for Pitt County Schools and for ECU.”

Math literacy, early language development and reading literacy will be a focus of the ECU laboratory school, Hayes said.

“We have the unique opportunity to design an innovative curriculum to improve student performance and to increase outcomes for students,” Hayes said. “Our goal is to be a model for the state of North Carolina.”

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