University of Pittsburgh
May 14, 2007

Pitt's Falk School to Celebrate 75th Anniversary With Weekend Festivities May 18-20

Falk reunion to include evening gala, groundbreaking for new addition, tours of the building, alumni coffee, and annual carnival
Contact:  412-624-4147

PITTSBURGH-A Hollywood director/choreographer, the son of everyone's favorite "Neighbor," and alumni going back to the class of 1942-including a married couple who met in grade school-will gather to celebrate the University of Pittsburgh School of Education's Falk Laboratory School and its 75 years of excellence in education May 18-20.

Laboratory schools are affiliated with institutions of higher learning and must include in their mission the preparation of teachers and/or the development of educational research. Built in 1931, Pitt's Falk Laboratory School, 4060 Allequippa St., Oakland, was the gift of Leon Falk Jr. and his sister, Marjorie Falk Levy, in honor of their mother, Fanny Edel Falk.

Wendell McConnaha, Falk School director, noted: "Falk School has excelled in the education of its students, preparation of teachers, and the development of educational research for the past 75 years. This expansion of its program and facility will enable Falk to better serve its students, the School of Education, and the University in these primary missions."

Notable Falk graduates Rob Marshall, Broadway choreographer and director of the movies Chicago (2002) and Memoirs of a Geisha (2005); Maura Marshall, his twin sister; and John Rogers, Mr. Rogers' son, will attend the Saturday evening gala at the Concordia Club, 4024 O'Hara St., Oakland. All events, except the dinner dance, will be held at Falk School.

Festivities include:

o May 18, 2 to 5 p.m. Tours of the Falk School building

o May 19, 6:30 p.m. Dinner dance

o May 20, 11 a.m. Alumni coffee

Noon to 4 p.m Annual School Carnival-games, prizes, food, and raffle

1 p.m. Ground breaking for the new addition to the building

Groundbreaking participants include Alan Lesgold, dean of Pitt's School of Education, McConnaha, and former Falk School directors Roy Creek and Bill McDonald. In addition, students representing each of the school's learning levels will don hard hats and shovels to take part.

"Falk School has a long history-actually two long histories," said Lesgold. "It has educated hundreds of Pittsburghers, many of whom have gone on to illustrious careers. And, it has been the place where hundreds of Pitt students learned how to teach. With this anniversary and the coming restoration of the Falk building, we begin another chapter in the life of this wonderful 'little school on a hill.'"

Approximately 275 students from kindergarten through eighth grade attend classes in the Tudor style building, learning traditional and technical subjects, languages, as well as the visual and performing arts. The new addition will enable the school to increase enrollment to more than 400 students.

The school is the only American laboratory school to have a legal charter that stipulates its purpose and function. The original charter designated the school as a progressive and experimental school for demonstration purposes. In 1946, the charter was amended to include practice teaching as one of the school's functions.

Falk School's mission has changed over time. Its teachers and interns are Pitt education faculty and students. Falk is committed to the development of excellence in education through five types of scholarly activity: research, experimentation, clinical teaching experiences, curriculum development, and staff development.