UNCG and Rockingham County Schools today unveiled a proposal for an innovative new partnership school in Rockingham County. The school – also called a “Lab School” – will bring the latest concepts in experiential learning and cutting edge teaching techniques to Moss Street Elementary School beginning in the fall of 2018. The proposed school will occupy the existing Moss Street facility and serve approximately 400 students in kindergarten through 5th grade. The proposal was presented at a Rockingham County Schools Board of Education work session Monday night.

Under the provisions of recently passed North Carolina state legislation and as part of a University of North Carolina system initiative to foster engagement between North Carolina universities and state elementary schools, the new partnership school will feature innovative approaches in terms of curriculum, hands-on teaching and learning, and professional development opportunities for area educators. The school will develop student skills and interest in the highly-desired “STEAM” subjects – science, technology, engineering, arts and math – as well as providing other services including counseling, nutrition and additional support for students and families. It will be one of nine such schools expected to be established over the next two years under the legislation.

“At UNCG, we recognize our responsibility to provide both academic opportunity and excellence to students across the region – in terms of innovative teaching, relevant subject matter and meaningful academic experiences,” said UNCG Chancellor Franklin D. Gilliam, Jr. “With Rockingham County, we can forge a deep partnership – transforming not just an entire building but by extension a community. We will open up new doors and create new life chances for students who may have otherwise been underserved. With our world-class School of Education and proven track record of producing outstanding educators, UNCG is well equipped to deliver on the vision for this kind of powerful collaboration, and we are excited about the future of this initiative in Rockingham County.”

Added Rodney Shotwell, superintendent of Rockingham County Schools, “We are proud to partner with UNCG in a way that directly benefits the students, families and teachers of Rockingham County. This will create a wave of new opportunity, usher in new ideas and techniques and introduce new resources to our community. With the pressures we face in serving our students through the public school system, partnerships like this are not only desirable, but essential. The Moss Street location will enable us to deliver an incredible new educational experience to hundreds of Rockingham County students.”

Over the next year, infrastructure, academic, staffing and financial plans will become more formalized between all parties. Current Moss Street Elementary faculty and staff will continue in their existing capacity for the entire 2017-18 academic year.