ECU Community School’s growth, goals


GREENVILLE, N.C. (WNCT) – Laboratory schools operate by a college or university and are used for student teaching and the demonstration of classroom practices. 

ECU Community School is one of five laboratory schools in the state of North Carolina. 

It’s in collaboration between East Carolina University and Pitt County Schools, operating within south Greenville Elementary School. 

The community school opened in the fall of 2017. 

Tracy Cole is the Principal at ECU Community School.

“Legislators said that colleges and universities need to establish lab schools for three big reasons, the first area is student growth and development, the second area is teacher preparation and the third area is administrator preparation,” says Cole.  

The school designed to build upon students’ strengths and provide real-world learning experiences with research-based instruction. 

They work closely with different colleges and departments across East Carolina University. 

This includes the Brody School of Medicine, the College of Allied Health Sciences, the Elementary Education Department and more. 

This provides training opportunities for pre-service teachers and students at the university.

Principal Tracy Cole explains how this works, “they start off first by observing, observing the teacher observing the students looking for very specific things through their observations and then after observations they have a chance to teach lessons to small groups of students, to whole class and they receive feedback on their practice which will help them grow.”

The first year the school was open there were fifty scholars, since then they have grown to 116 scholars.

They anticipate the school’s size to continue to grow along with their student’s academics. 

If you would like to get involved with ECU Community School you can contact Tracey Cole at 252-737-5602 or by e-mail at

More ECU Community School information can be found here.

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