UK Early Childhood Lab Moving to Former Seminary Location
LEXINGTON, Ky. (Sept. 10, 2013) ― The University of Kentucky College of Education's Early Childhood Laboratory (ECL) will find a new home at the facilities of the Lexington Theological Seminary, recently acquired by UK. The UK Board of Trustees today approved a capital project to renovate more than 10,000 square feet of space in a freestanding building next to the seminary for the laboratory.
The ECL, currently located in the basement of the Erickson Building, educates children from infant through pre-school and provides the College of Education students with an excellent opportunity to gain field experience in early childhood teaching. It also provides on-campus childcare for faculty and staff.
The renovation will allow for expansion of the childcare program in an improved environment and create space that will be compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act.
The Early Childhood Lab was established in 1928 and is operated by the UK College of Education Department of Special Education and Rehabilitation Counseling’s Interdisciplinary Early Childhood Education Program – serving as its primary training site. Presently, it is licensed for 54 children, ages 6 weeks to 6 years. Each semester, about 1,100 students visit the Early Childhood Lab from a variety of programs across campus. Additionally, students conduct masters theses and dissertations in the Early Childhood Lab.
“The Early Childhood Lab has the highest quality ratings of any early care and education program in Kentucky and the nation,” said UK College of Education Dean Mary John O’Hair. “UK College of Education faculty, staff and students are eager to have a new and innovative space for the children we serve that will match the quality of this vital program.”
The $3 million project will be funded with a $1 million internal loan, private gifts and general funds. The College of Education will repay the principal of the loan over a period not to exceed 10 years. The Office of the Executive Vice President for Finance and Administration will pay the accrued interest on the internal loan.
“The acquisition of the seminary property has given us the perfect opportunity to move the Early Childhood Lab into a modern, freestanding building that is in a safe location off central campus, said Bob Wiseman, vice president for facilities management. “Their building, which sets on the main access road, is a shell now, but it has plenty of room for an adjacent, safe playground area. We think it’s the perfect home and a major location improvement for the Early Childhood Lab."
MEDIA CONTACT: Jenny Wells, (859) 257-5343; Jenny.Wells@uky.edu