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What does it mean to be a co-op?
Co-op’s are not like other preschools; parent involvement is the backbone of our school. At FPl we have paid professional teachers for our 3’s and 4’s classes, a teaching aid for both classes and our 4’s teacher also serves as our Program Director, but we do not have many of the other staff that you might find at a more traditional preschool. There is no janitor, or secretary, or administrative position. The parents in a co-op work to fill these roles. This allows parents the opportunity to be an active part of their child’s school and allows the co-op to offer lower tuition costs and to provide exceptional materials and resources to the children.
Parents can also use their special skills to enhance the school's curriculum by speaking to the class about their profession, heritage or special talent like music or art. Parents can also chaperone their child on field trips throughout the year and holiday parties. This helps the child feel safe and secure as they explore their community.
It is important for any family to understand the responsibilities and benefits that come with being a part of a cooperative preschool. A cooperative preschool isn’t for everyone but for those who do choose to join a co-op it is a wonderful experience, not only to be a part of their child’s education but to also be a part of a larger community that is committed to making these early years truly exceptional.
A cooperative preschool requires the involvement of the parents to keep the school running.
Each family assists in the administration of the school through serving as coordinators or on the executive board.
Each family that is not already part of the board, will be assigned to a coordinator role.
All families are required to attend monthly membership meetings. These meetings are where the membership gets to vote on items like tuition, discuss any potential changes, needs or improvements, and get to know the other families.
About once a month, your child will get to be the special helper for the day, and one adult from the family attends with them.
Responsibilities of the parent in the classroom would be:
Arrive 15 minutes before class begins to help set up the classroom and
welcome the students into the room.
During class, interact with children, be an extra helping adult, clean up after messy activities.
Provide a healthy snack for the class and teachers
After school is over, clean the classroom and bathroom in accordance with the cleaning checklist.
Weekly and Yearly Workdays
Several times a year we gather as a co-op to do large scale jobs around the school that go beyond the regular daily upkeep. This might be a thorough cleaning of the classrooms or an afternoon spreading mulch on the playground. In addition, on rotation, every family is required to clean the classroom at the end of the day about once a week and fluff mulch/clean the playground about once a month.
Each family is asked to contribute.
Cooperative Parent Training
Families are required to complete four hours of orientation training per year.