(UNIVERSITY OF MEMPHIS NEWS RELEASE) – The University of Memphis is launching a new kindergarten program as part of its national Blue Ribbon-designated Campus School. Campus School has served the University community for decades in grades 1-5, yet it has never been home to a kindergarten program.
The kindergarten addition willopen doors to not only increase enrollment and access to Campus School, it willalso allow its hallmark laboratory education to extend into a publickindergarten experience. The addition is made possible, in part, by a $1million renovation to an existing University building which will be repurposedas part of the elementary school campus. Construction is expected to begin inthe coming months.
“Adding kindergarten to the CampusSchool curriculum not only advances our University Schools’ goal of diversity,inclusion and access within our schools, it also opens the doors for more dynamicand robust research and practitioner training programs that can have lastingimpact across the district and field of early childhood education,” said SallyParish, associate vice president for Educational Initiatives.
Campus Schoolis a laboratory school operated in partnership with Shelby County Schools.Campus School promotes excellence in teaching and enthusiasm for learning andserves the campus and community as a hub of observation, reflection, andteacher and practitioner practice. This excellence will be extended into thekindergarten experience through the integration of research into an innovativecurriculum and the engagement of a diverse school population.
With the addition of thisinaugural kindergarten class, comprised of children of UofM faculty and staffas well as students residing in a two-mile radius proximal to campus,University Schools will see a record year of enrollment. The 2020-21 academicyear is expected to enroll over 700 children within three University Schools.This number will continue to grow toward the 1,000 mark with the addition offuture University Middle grades and future enrollment in the UofM andPorter-Leath partnership preschool program.
“The addition of a kindergarten toCampus School allows us to create a true educational compendium with continuityof care and support for children and families in our community,” Parish said.“The launch of Campus School’s first-ever kindergarten program demonstrates theUniversity’s continued commitment to supporting children from birth tograduation in the Memphis community. We are truly overjoyed at the opportunityto provide this experience to our community and look forward to the newfamilies and children that we will be able to serve.”
The new kindergarten program is thelatest in a series of additions and expansions to the University Schoolseducational compendium which seeks to provide the children of our communitywith educational experiences that enhance their development and promote dynamicresearch, collaborative partnerships and innovative practices.