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August 1, 2017 
Vol. 47 No. 7
Cooperatively Speaking
The Latest News from PCPI
Hello All!  

In my world, turning the calendar over to August means the official start of preparation for the new school year. It's exciting to think about the new families I will meet and the new experiences we will have together.  It's also a time for reflection as I clean my office and sort through pictures from children, letters from parents, and projects from days past. 

August serves as a reminder of all of the ways that that my life has been enriched through my cooperative experience. It's truly a labor of love.  I wonder if you feel the same.


Dianne Rose, M.Ed.
Editor, Cooperatively Speaking

New Reciprocal Affiliate in the UK
PCPI has established a new reciprocal affiliation with the  Pre-school Learning Alliance of the UK, the successor organization to the  Pre-school Playgroups Association, which was started in London in 1961 (one year after the formation of PCPI).

You might wonder what this means.  Reciprocal Affiliates are like-minded organizations with similar philosophies.  We agree to exchange links to our websites and contact information in our directories. There is no cost to be listed. The goal is to provide an easy way for our members to make helpful connections, and in the case of the Pre-school Learning Alliance, families moving between the UK and Canada or the USA can gain easily access to each other's resources.

You will see from their statement below that the Alliance and PCPI have much overlap in their philosophies.  Parent classroom participation is not necessarily integral to their member settings, but an exploration of their website reveals that there is considerable parent participation in other areas of their administration.

Our hope is that over time the list of Reciprocal Affiliates will continue to grow.  If you have ideas of organizations that should be included, please share your ideas with Meg Kennedy Shaw.  Or feel free to contact them yourselves, and see if they might be interested to setting up an Affiliation with PCPI.

"The Pre-school Learning Alliance is the largest and most representative early years membership organisation in England. A registered educational charity, it also provides high quality affordable childcare and education to support children and families in areas of deprivation throughout the country.
The Alliance represents 14,000 member settings and supports them to deliver care and learning to over 800,000 families every year. We deliver family learning projects, offer information and advice, produce specialist publications, run acclaimed training and accreditation schemes and campaign to influence early years policy and practice."

Coming Soon:  Cooperative Spirit Grant
Because of the nature of cooperative schools, it stands to reason that all of our schools probably experience a high level of parent involvement. However, in recent years, we've heard reports of just the opposite from many schools: volunteerism is low and schools are seeking ways to encourage parents to become more involved in school and more connected to the community.

In response, PCPI created the Cooperative Spirit Grant with the hope that it will foster excitement and involvement among  parents in member schools by giving them the opportunity and the means to undertake a large project that will c reate a lasting legacy for their school and their community.   Examples could be painting an outdoor mural, building a play structure, or creating a community garden.  Project possibilities are unlimited!

While the details are still in the works, it's a good time to start brainstorming. As a guide, proposals should:
  • have an element that provides long term benefit to your cooperative school  
  • set an example that could be replicated in other communities as a way to promote cooperative spirit
  • describe a dream, or goal, presented as a plan of action that can be implemented by parents and that includes community connections
  • include a budget
The Cooperative Spirit Grant Committee is currently working through the logistics to make the grant a reality.  Look for more information and an application form in the fall mailing.

Call for Photos

The new PCPI website is currently under construction.  We'd like the site to be a reflection of the energy, passion, and spirit of our members, but to do that we need your help. Are you willing to share a photo or two that is especially representative of your school community?

Contributing photos is easy.  Just email one or two favorites to pcpinewsletter@gmail.com. Include your school and photographer names for photo credit. We look forward to sharing images of your school with others interested in cooperative education!

Cooperatively Speaking with friends!

We'd like to reach as many readers as we can.  PCPI welcomes parents and staff of member schools, councils, and libraries as well as affiliates and sponsors.  There are lots of ways to share Cooperatively Speaking:
  • Forward this message to your school or council network email list
  • Send a list of email addresses for contacts at your school or council to pcpinewsletter@gmail.com to have them added directly to the distribution list
  • Click the Join Our Mailing List or Forward to a Friend buttons at the end of this newsletter

To submit an article or idea, please email pcpinewsletter@gmail.com.  Thanks!


Parent Cooperative Preschools International (PCPI)