The teachers in a co-op have an informal, ongoing relationship with parents, one of mutual respect and consideration. The teachers can (and should) use the parents’ talents and ideas to expand the program. Teachers are able to gain insights into family dynamics, which results in more understanding of the child.
The co-operative nursery school is an organization of parents and teachers who are concerned with the welfare of pre-school children. It is an opportunity for children, parents and teachers to play, learn and grow together. In a Jewish pre-school, the co-op allows parents to be involved in the “Jewish Maturation” and brings Jewish living and education into the home.
Parents participate in the daily program on a rotating basis, serving as staff members with the direction of a professional early childhood educator. Co-oping provides an extra set of hands to help in the classroom.
The children are able to socialize with peers as well as many adults. They have the opportunity to see the results of adults working together toward mutual goals. They benefit from the exposure to many parents and their varying strengths and talents. Parent participation provides a better adult/child ratio, which ensures important individual attention for the children.
The parents who are involved in co-ops gain a better understanding of their child’s capabilities, growth, and development. They become familiar with their child’s school routines and have a personal and informal relationship with the teachers and principal. They become an integral part of their child’s first school experience. Parents have the opportunity to develop a network of support and friendships. They gain more knowledge through parent education programs and exposure to the rich Judaic content of the program.