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  • Education for democracy and a just society is at the heart of UCLA Lab School’s mission

    UCLA Lab School is a laboratory elementary school serving 450 students ages 4 to 12 (PreK-6)  in a diverse community. Our school is located on the campus of UCLA, one of the world’s leading research universities. We offer an inclusive, inquiry-based curriculum that prepares children with the knowledge and skills they need to take an informed and responsible role in the world. Our program of research brings top experts to our school community to explore promising ideas about what matters most in education for the benefit of children, educators and families at our school and beyond.

Our Mission

As a laboratory for the UCLA School of Education and Information Studies, our mission at UCLA Lab School is to promote innovation and excellence in education through teaching, research and public engagement.
  • We are dedicated to addressing the needs of children from diverse backgrounds.
  • We value teaching and learning environments that honor each child’s natural joy of learning.
  • We encourage creativity and support a disciplined approach to intellectual inquiry.
  • We are a caring community of learners–students, teachers, staff, and families.
  • We are committed to educating the whole child.

Features of our Program

  • Research-based practice — teaching and learning are informed by the latest knowledge about what works in education
  • Safe School system — life skills learning is woven into the curriculum and school culture
  • Inclusion — we value the experiences that every child brings to our learning community and design instruction so that all are appropriately challenged and supported in their efforts
  • Inquiry-based pedagogy — through hands-on, project-based learning we foster critical thinking, creativity, communication and in-depth understanding of subject matter
  • Team teaching — professional collaboration results in deepened knowledge and expertise
  • Dual Language program — children are supported in becoming bilingual, biliterate and bicultural
  • Multi-age classes — children learn to see themselves and their peers as resources and support each other in their learning

Our Commitment to Justice, Equity, Diversity and Inclusion

At UCLA Lab School, we deeply value the diversity of our school community. Diversity is essential to our research mission and reflects our highest values as educators. All students and adults benefit from the rich mix of ethnicities, languages, identities and perspectives that make up our community of learners. We continually work to evolve our learning environment so that all voices are represented, heard and respected.
We view the world through a multifaceted lens centered on justice, equity, diversity and inclusion. To have this “JEDI” vision, we must continuously stretch our thinking, have difficult conversations and remain true to our core values.

See what our JEDI vision is all about

Teaching that fuels imagination and purpose

UCLA Lab School strives to be a caring community of learners dedicated to educating the whole child. We value learning that is collaborative, experiential, interdisciplinary, and inquiry-based. We delight in children’s natural joy of discovery. We believe our role as educators is to listen to children’s voices and encourage them to see themselves as active agents of positive change in their classrooms, communities, and the world.
Fundamental to this work is our Safe School approach, a system for creating and maintaining an environment that encourages all members of our school to be inclusive, to collaborate, to listen to diverse perspectives, and to be reflective in their learning.

Research to build the future of education

As a partner of the UCLA School of Education and Information Studies, our school community benefits from working with experts who are at the forefront of their fields. Close collaboration between researchers and teachers provides our students with a high-quality program that integrates the neuroscience of learning and connects theory and practice. Much of the research at our school is on education and child development. However, researchers from across the disciplines work with our teachers and students on projects that have relevance for elementary education.

Public engagement that supports great teaching

Founded in 1882 as a teacher training school, we are proud to offer programs that provide professional learning opportunities for teachers addressing the needs of today’s students. We partner with public schools to refine and expand thinking and practices about the pedagogy of inquiry. After an intensive institute at UCLA Lab School, teachers from our partner schools work with Lab School teachers both at our school and at their own sites. This collaboration and exploration of these practices in different teaching and learning environments enriches all partners’ ability to adapt and grow an inquiry pedagogy that honors diverse student voices.