Joining a Cooperative Pre-school

February 27, 2022

Enrolling our son, Mark, in the 4’s class at Wilde Lake Children’s Nursery has been a great decision. We had our doubts due to COVID-19 [and variants] and the unknown effort required from joining a cooperative school. Now, about six months into the school year, we can affirmatively say that we made the right decision for our family. Let me explain…

COVID restrictions were tough on Mark, being the only child at home, limited play dates with friends, and avoiding public parks and large gatherings. Additionally, in the Fall of 2020, COVID fears kept us from entering Mark into preschool at age 3. By the following Fall, we were feeling safer, having been vaccinated and boosted, and with a children’s vaccine on the horizon, giving our son a chance to socialize, play, and make friends became paramount.

From day 1, Mark made friends and was excited to be returning the following day to see them again. In fact, he was disappointed when he discovered there was no school on weekends. When he talks about school, it is frequently about playing with his friends, listening to a story, and making crafts. Most days, when asked what he did at school, he responds with an excited, “Everything!”

We’ve also come to realize that a cooperative school gives the parents an opportunity to make friends, to see our children interact in a school setting, and to make a difference to a community of families. We meet other parents when dropping off and picking up our children, being the co-op volunteer, helping with daily or deep cleans, and during committee or board meetings. We’ve become friends with several families. Picking up Mark from school is very social, because on days with nice weather, the kids want to keep playing together and often hang out at the playground next door.

Being part of a co-op is a lot of work. Parents sign up to be part of and to deliver on the school’s mission. However, we also have an opportunity to use our talents, whether they be in fundraising, book-keeping, making crafts, planning snacks, or tying shoes. Better yet, we see everyone’s contributions in the smiles of the children streaming from the school every afternoon.

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Happy Valentine’s Day!Vroom Vroom

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