Amador Cooperative Preschool
Amador Cooperative Preschool (ACP) officially opened its doors in August of 2006 and is Amador County’s only parent cooperative preschool. ACP differs from other preschools in the county in that it is run by, and for, the preschool families. Each family shares in the operation of the school, from administration to maintenance, and assists the teachers in the classroom on a regular basis. The teachers and parents work together to create a positive, safe, nurturing, and fun learning environment for all children. A strong sense of community flourishes within this cooperative structure.
Benefits: Some of the many benefits of parent cooperative preschool programs include a high adult to child ratio (1:4), reasonable tuition, and opportunities to play a very active role in your child’s first school experience, befriend other families, and learn more about child development and early education.
Philosophy: At ACP, we believe that children’s learning is fostered best in a positive environment that is play-based, child centered, and developmentally appropriate. Children are valued as individuals and treated with respect and understanding of their varied learning styles and developmental levels. Parents are respected as their child’s first teacher and considered to be valuable cooperative partners to the teacher in fostering their children’s development. We honor the young child’s need for warmth, movement, choice, security, and joyfulness, and intentionally design environments and interactions that nurture the development of the whole child.
Curriculum: Our teachers create a rich and stimulating environment for the children to explore, with indoor and outdoor, active and quiet, and individual and group activities that nurture each child’s social, emotional, physical, cognitive, and creative growth. Child-initiated, adult-supported play is an essential component of our program. Throughout the day, children have opportunities to discover math and science concepts, make decisions, problem-solve, follow directions, expand their language and early literacy knowledge, express themselves creatively through art, music, and dramatic play, experience gardening and cooking, practice sensory and motor skills, develop self-confidence, independence, responsibility, cooperation, and friendship…and have lots of fun!
Days & Hours of Operation: ACP operates September through June following the Amador County Unified School District calendar and offers a morning preschool class that meets Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday from 8:30-11:30am. Families may enroll their child(ren) for 2 or 3 days a week. Field trips to special places and events in and around Amador County are scheduled approximately once per month.
Tuition: Please call ACP for current tuition rates. Tuition rates include a healthy daily snack for each child. A limited number of income-eligible tuition scholarships are available on a first come, first served basis.
Parent Responsibilities: The very nature of a cooperative preschool assumes that parents will be contributing, responsible participants in the operation of the school. Failure to fulfill responsibilities can result in fines or termination of membership.
- Orientation - All members are required to attend a one-time group orientation meeting in August before school starts. A special meeting with the Director will be arranged for members enrolling their children in the school after the school year has already begun. The purpose of the orientation is to help members understand how a cooperative preschool operates, to review all member responsibilities, to answer questions regarding their and their child(ren)’s participation at the school, and to discuss any concerns they might have.
- Parent Participation in the Classroom - Parent participation in the classroom is essential to the success of Amador Cooperative Preschool. We encourage members to not only be extra eyes and hands in the classroom as assistants to the teachers, but also to share any interests or talents with the children. Members will be asked to work in the classroom 1-2 days per month. Due to licensing regulations, younger siblings of enrolled children are not permitted at the school on members’ work days (with the exception of infants in slings/carriers).
- Membership Meetings - Members are required to attend eight (8) membership meetings during the school year. Membership meetings will involve important discussion about the day-to-day operation of the school and opportunities for parent education. Meetings will be held monthly, with the Board of Directors meeting from 6:00pm until 7:00pm, followed by the general membership meeting from 7:00pm until 9:00pm.
- Fundraising – ACP is a nonprofit organization. Fundraising efforts of families provide the necessary income to keep ACP open, to improve the facility, and to keep tuition costs down. There are a variety of methods used to raise funds for the school. Specific details regarding fundraising events and activities and member participation requirements are provided as they become available.
- School Maintenance - The membership is responsible for helping to keep ACP clean, safe and looking good. Members are required to clean the school at least once during the school year.
- Board Positions – Members who would like to be more involved with decision-making, leadership, and administration of the school are invited to serve on the ACP Board of Directors. There are six volunteer Board positions available.
Admissions & Registration: Children may enroll in ACP at any time during the school year as long as they are 2 years 9 months old by their first day of school (exceptions occasionally granted with Director's discretion) and may remain enrolled up until 6 years of age. Children are NOT required to be potty-trained to be considered for ACP. Enrollment will be on a first come, first served basis upon payment of a non-refundable $25 registration fee and completion of an Admission Packet for each child.
Thank you for your interest in ACP! If you have any questions,
please don’t hesitate to call First 5 Amador at (209) 257-1092.