What is expected of a Co-op Parent?
Puyallup South Cooperative Nursery School is a parent cooperative preschool run by the families, for the families. For parents who want to participate in their child’s early education, it offers an excellent choice. Cooperative preschools have a 50-year history in Washington State. The Tacoma-Pierce County cooperative preschools have been affiliated with Bates Technical College for more than 30 years. Under the guidance of Bates Technical College Home and Family Life Department, cooperatives have developed into small, non-profit corporations controlled by each school’s families.
To successfully operate our school, each family involved must make a commitment to participate in the school’s activities and operations. This commitment involves:
A Parent Training session will be held before the start of school to fully familiarize you with the classroom routine. This training is required for all who will be working in the classroom: moms, dads, grandparents, day-care providers, etc. If there is any possibility of someone working in the classroom during the school year, they must attend one parent training session.
The co-op philosophy recognizes parents as the most important teachers their children will ever have. To incorporate this philosophy, parents work a few days each month in the classroom assisting the teacher in all activity areas of the school, cleaning up the day’s activities, and providing a nutritious snack on a rotating basis. Classroom participation will vary month to month depending on which class your child is in, how often it meets, and the number of children in the class.
The co-op is run by the families, who serve as officers on the school board and members of committees. There are numerous committee and board positions available to suit a variety of interests. These positions help the school run smoothly and involve everyone.
The co-op is the best place in town to learn right along with your child under the guidance of early childhood professionals. When you enroll your child at Puyallup South, you enroll yourself in the Bates Technical College Home and Family Life program. Over the school year, you will earn at least 8 parent education credits by attending parent education meetings or participation in other approved activities. Most meetings feature a speaker addressing a carefully chosen educational topic. Time and topics and a list of alternate activities approved for credit are included in this handbook.
The co-op offers low tuition and a very high-quality program—all possible only with classroom participation and full member support of fundraising. Our small, non-profit corporation is self-supporting. Registration and tuition fees do not meet the total cost of operation. Fundraisers are necessary, not only to provide new equipment and keep tuition low, but also more importantly, to pay the monthly bills such as teacher’s salaries, supplies, rent, etc.
The co-op provides a healthy, safe environment to which we all contribute by participation in one work party during the year. At orientation, each family will leave a check for $50 that will remain un-cashed until your clean up session. Cleaning sessions are held once a month and can be signed up for throughout the year in the parent room on the sign up board. After you have fulfilled your cleaning duty, you will receive your $50 school clean-up deposit back. If you fail to attend a cleaning session during the 2012-13 school year your deposit will be cashed.