Shelley family gift names new early childhood lab school - Coastal Carolina University
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Shelley family gift names new early childhood lab school

Ed, Billie and Jay Shelley

Ed, Billie and Jay Shelley

The family of the late Peggy S. Shelley of Garden City Beach has made a significant donation to the Coastal Carolina University Spadoni College of Education. The gift, given jointly by Dr. and Mrs. B. Ed Shelley Jr., Dr. and Mrs. Jay S. Shelley, and their father, Billie E. Shelley, will establish the Peggy S. Shelley Early Childhood Lab School. The gift supports the University’s I’M IN endowment campaign.

The lab school will be housed in the Early Childhood Development and Literacy Center in Kingston Hall. Scheduled to open this fall, the center will serve approximately 120 children ages 3 to 5 years old, and will include five literacy rooms, four classrooms and an outdoor playground. Children in the lab school will learn Spanish and English in the project-based kindergarten and preschool. CCU’s early childhood education and elementary program will also offer an after-school program weekdays from 2:30 to 6 p.m.


“The Shelley family’s generosity will allow the college to further advance and develop our Early Childhood Development and Literacy Center,” said Edward Jadallah, dean of the Spadoni College of Education. “Pre-service teachers in CCU’s early childhood and elementary education programs will have the opportunity to be involved in the center’s activities through varied practicum experiences and an internship. Also, graduate students and faculty will have teaching and research opportunities through the early childhood development and literacy programs.”

Ed Shelley says his family proudly supports Coastal because of a basic family philosophy: “It is much more satisfying to give than to receive.”

“Our family is from Spartanburg, but I have lived in Horry County for 35 years,” Shelley said. “My dad and brother spend a lot of time here as well, so Coastal is now our local college that we support. My mother felt strongly that reading was a basic art that we all must really master. She taught school and volunteered in educational programs that advanced children’s learning. My family’s sincere hope is that through this learning center, students and children both will understand the importance of education in our society and that somehow, in some small way, Peggy Shelley would continue her lifelong quest to promote the learning process.”

Four full-time instructors will be hired for the center’s four classrooms that will have a maximum of 20 children enrolled in each level. In addition, students in CCU’s elementary and early childhood education programs will have the opportunity to gain hands-on clinical experiences through the program, which will offer innovative techniques for future teachers. The center will also provide options for faculty, staff and students to have their children on campus for education and development.

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