co·op·er·a·tive

kōˈäp(ə)rədiv/ - adjective

1. involving mutual assistance in working toward a common goal.

2. an organization that is owned and run jointly by its members, who share the profits or benefits.

A cooperative school is a non-profit, non-sectarian, democratic organization where each family shares in the planning and operation of the school. Parents participate in the program on a rotating basis, serving as assistants to a professional nursery school teacher and staff. The efforts of parents and their direct involvement during the school day make parent participation nursery schools a unique educational endeavor.

How do parent-participatory nursery schools benefit the child, the parents, and the community?

The child gains the ability to relate to and communicate with other children, as well as adults. The child experiences a variety of play equipment, expressive materials and media, resulting in a positive attitude towards learning. The child also gains self-esteem.

The parents gain an opportunity to learn and develop with their child, as well as an increased awareness of the role of education in developing an effective and satisfying family life.

The community gains children who are learning respect for others, and families with a sense of community responsibility.

(From the California Council of Parent Participation Nursery Schools, Inc.)