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About the School

What is a lab school?

As a laboratory school attached to the university's College of Education and Human Services, Luhrs provides a setting for university students from many majors to observe and participate in elementary school activities. In conjunction with the adjacent Child and Family Center, university students majoring in education, early childhood, psychology, sociology, criminal justice, social work and counseling can engage in the study of children from ages one to eleven. University students can observe classes from observation booths, tutor students in core content areas of reading and math, or participate in whole-class activities.

Teaching Philosophy

The cornerstone of teaching is the focus and commitment on the growth and development of the whole child.

Teachers promote creativity, social development, cognitive skills, emotional health and physical growth.

Education progresses in a pace consistent with the developmental needs and abilities of each child.

Our open-door policy encourages families as active participants in school. Families, university students, and other volunteers contribute to all school activities.


The curriculum of the Luhrs School represents the partnership between the school district and the university faculty. The curriculum of the school district provides the basis of curriculum planning at the laboratory school. The Luhrs faculty may depart from the district curriculum as necessary to ensure:

  • Developmentally appropriate instruction
  • Family, community and university participation
  • Whole-school cooperative units
  • Research-based, best practices
  • Opportunities for faculty-directed research by university students
  • Opportunities to model best practices for university students and visiting educators

Luhrs Library Media Center

The Luhrs Library Media Center is home to the university's 11,000 volume children's literature collection. In addition to books and other instructional media, the center provides university and elementary students with wireless computer access, faculty support and a pleasant place to work and learn.


In order to carry out its mission as a laboratory school, class sizes are traditionally slightly smaller than in other public schools. Grace B. Luhrs University Elementary School is a full-service public school with grades K through 5, and enrolls approximately 132 students. 


NALS Logo  Grace B. Luhrs School is a member of the International Association of Laboratory Schools (IALS).


Contact the Grace B. Luhrs University Elementary School 1871 Old Main Drive Shippensburg, PA 17257 Phone: 717-477-1612 Fax: (717) 477-4072