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Former Preschoolers Return to Lab School After Seven Decades


Seven former preschool students of Dr. Phyllis Richards met for a reunion at the Priscilla Pond Flawn Child and Family Laboratory on Friday, June 30. That might not seem so unusual, except that Dr. Richards is 97 years old and her former students are in their 70s. They've known Dr. Richards since they were two or three years old. She was a freshly minted teacher when she came to teach preschool at the lab school in 1948.

Richards and her former students toured the current facilities which date to the early 2000s, in the Seay building on the UT Austin campus at Dean Keeton and Speedway. The tour ended with a recreation of a 1948 stairwell photo that ran in the Austin American-Statesman.

Richards reflected on her time at UT: "I have some very good memories and friends that I taught in the lab school that went on to do great things. Which is what we do at UT, right? I'm very proud of all of them. If you went and asked them about their occupations, you'd be very surprised."

The reunion was covered by several local TV stations:

KXAN: 97-year-old teacher returns to UT Lab School to recreate class photo

KVUE: 70 years later, classmates reunite to recreate preschool photo from UT school lab