Are They Ready?
Doris and Michelle are both parents of two-year olds. They’re neighbours and their children play together. Both children, Jasmine and Bradley, will be three this summer so their parents have been discussing pre-school.
Parent Participation Preschool
There are many choices of preschools and many offer a great experience for preschoolers. I’m a great supporter of parent participation preschools because they’re good for both preschoolers and their parents.
I can remember the days when my friends and I talked about our young children, sharing toilet training stories, first day of school and birthday parties. That was over thirty years ago. Now we talk about weddings, grandchildren and our children’s careers.
Different stories, but the same friends. I met many of my friends while my children were in preschool, a parent participation preschool, to be exact.
Busy parents often find the concept of participating in their child’s preschool to be overwhelming and don’t even consider the option. Let me talk to you about the benefits.
Parent Participation Preschools are run by the parents. There is an Association of 33 schools in the Lower Mainland and another six throughout the province. The Association has been in existence since 1946. Nine of these schools are on the north shore.
In these schools parents have the opportunity of having a say in the administration of the school, being with their child at preschool for a half-day once or twice a month and attending monthly meetings with other parents which offer free Parenting Education along with a business meeting.
Research shows that parent involvement is a major factor in child success. In my experience parents who start participating with their children at the preschool or daycare level continue to do so through elementary and high school.
The children are engaged in a quality program with a qualified teacher. Teachers who choose to teach in a parent participation school bring an appreciation for the role of parents into the school situation. They are not only committed to quality early childhood education, they are committed to partnering with parents to make the experience for all parties the best it can be.
Your involvement in the school will take into account your schedule and abilities. You’ll meet other parents who share many of your values about the importance of quality parenting, learn more about child-raising and work with like-minded and usually nice people toward joint goals. And, you will make friends for life.
Some of the advantages are:
- you have direct input into the running and philosophy of the preschool
- you can watch your child with others of the same age and see how he fits with his age group
- it’s less expensive
- you’ll meet other parents which reduces the isolation and loneliness often experienced by parents of preschoolers
- you’ll work with parents who share your basic philosophy of involvement with your child
- you’ll make lifetime friendships
- the teacher is readily available of for advice and information about your child.
For more information and to find a school near you, call the Council of Parent Participation Preschools in Burnaby at (604) 435-4430.