What is your role as a parent at PALS?
PALS is dependent on parent participation to operate. In addition to being a memorable and cherished experience for you and your child, enthusiastic parent participation keeps the school running efficiently and the tuition low. As well as the working days in the classroom, each family must take on one job within the co-op (i.e. arts and crafts prep work, working with a team to fundraise, helping on a committee to decorate the class bulletin boards at the beginning of each month, etc.). On the first Wednesday of each month we have a mandatory monthly meeting from 6:30-9pm at the Temecula Library. We begin our meeting with parent education (an expert in some field, often child development, giving us some useful knowledge as parents), and then go over co-op business such as curriculum, fundraisers, mom's night out, field trips, etc. There are a few other more minor commitments such as working on a committee to help plan a special event, 1 Saturday morning per year to clean the classroom, and helping at one of our garage sales.
A more detailed look at parent participation requirements is as follows:
- Work in the classroom (9:15a.m. – 1:15p.m.) two to four times per month/per child (this is dependent on which class your child is enrolled in)
- Provide a nutritious lunch for the class five to six times per year.
- Participate in at least one-half of the field trips scheduled for the child’s class.
- Complete the requirements of one job assignment per child enrolled.
- Serve as a member on one committee (e.g. graduation, family picnic, Dad’s Day)
- Attend the general/parent education meeting once a month. This meeting begins with parent education (an expert in some field, often child development, giving us some useful knowledge as parents), and then we go over co-op business such as curriculum, fundraisers, mom's night out and field trips.
- Work one Saturday per year (8a.m. – 12p.m.) to clean and maintain the classroom.
- Attend Orientation at the beginning of the year (In August).
In some ways, these requirements look like extra work. However, perhaps the most lasting effect of joining a cooperative preschool is the sense of community that develops among the parents, as they serve together on committees, celebrate birthdays, welcome new births and share their parenting successes and concerns. These friendships formed around common involvement at PALS often last a lifetime.