Officials with North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University are laying out plans for a new laboratory school in Guilford County. The initiative would be a partnership with the local school district to help improve student outcomes.

In 2016, the state legislature passed a law that called for the UNC system to open a series of laboratory schools. It aims to provide enhanced educational programming to students in low-performing schools and serve as a hands-on training site for future teachers and school administrators.

The schools are run by a university and districts provide transportation and other resources.

North Carolina A&T is partnering with Guilford County Schools to create a laboratory school in the community. Details are still being worked out, but university officials say the focus would be on grades 3-5, which are the elementary testing years.

Emphasis will be placed on STEAM -– science, technology, engineering, arts and math. They hope to serve up to 100 students.

Paula Groves Price, the Dean of the College of Education at N.C. A&T, says they are looking at sites off-campus, and their focus is East Greensboro.

“It's not just about raising test scores for kids, but it's really about I think changing kind of the life trajectory and really disrupting some of the generational poverty that we have had in our community for quite some time.”

The proposed name for the lab school is Aggie Academy. Groves Price says the university will present an update to the North Carolina Board of Governors for consideration next week.

The N.C. State Board of Education would have to give final approval and is expected to review the proposal in early March.

If all goes well, the lab school will open in the fall.

Follow WFDD's Keri Brown on Twitter @kerib_news

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