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starting a co-op preschool - where do I start?

post #1 of 2
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I have been talking with some other mom's in my area about starting a co-op preschool for our kids beginning next fall (07). My daughter is 2, and although some of her little friends have started pre-school/daycare, she has never really ever been away from her father or I. The idea of sending her to an unknown place (even though I know there are some good pre-schools in our area) at age 3 is a little disturbing to me.
So I was wondering if anyone had any ideas on how to go about starting a co-op preschool? We would need to find a building to rent or buy and would probably be in need of some grants (we are in Humboldt Co., Ca.) I am wondering about the right size for a preschool class, do we need to hire a teacher, or is there some kind of certification that we as parents should have. I figure we ( the parents) should all take a CPR and conflict resolution class together, but what else?
I quess I am just looking for some ideas or if someone has already started a pre-school co-op, a basic guideline for getting started.
Thanks for any feedback!
post #2 of 2
We just started a co-op in our town. Last week was our first week. Just to let you know it is a lot of work and everyone needs to be really committed to the idea. Here are some things to start with.

1. I see you are in CA so you need to contact First 5 they have funding and can give you lots of advise.

2. It would be helpful if at least one of the parents has some early childhood education trainning. They should know all the resources available to you.

3.You can talk to your local rec. district and maybe they would let you use some of their space for free.

4. Have a plan for what you want the school to be like and work from there.

We don't have a teacher. Each mom has an assigned day to be head teacher and then there are 2 helping moms. They work together to plan the day using the guide lines we all agreed on.

Find out all the licensing rules!!!!

If you dont charge a fee and all the parents work co-op days you don't have to get a license. If you charge a fee it gets more complicated. We all DONATED $100 start up fees to buy supplies and have brought things from home.

I'm sure there is so much more I could add. You can PM me with questions if you want.
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