Getting Involved (or Not)

What does it mean to be a co-op?

Waterloo Co-operative Preschool is a parent co-operative where families work together to manage the successful operation of our school. Being part of a parent co-op is a very rewarding experience. Our preschool provides the opportunity to be involved with your child’s early education in a way that works with your schedule, budget and lifestyle. All of the members pool their resources to create a successful program. We, as the parents, are the assistant teachers, the administrators, the fundraisers, the maintenance crew, and the organizers. Together, the families of Waterloo Co-operative Preschool have been running successful programs for over 45 years!

Waterloo Co-operative Preschool is funded in part by the Region of Waterloo.


Classroom participation

At our preschool, you can choose to be either a participating or non-participating family. Participating families help out in the classroom once a month in return for a reduction in tuition fees. Non-participating families do not help out in the classroom.

Participating parents

Participating parents assist with snack preparation, set up and clean up while also interacting with children in the class during the program. Parents can expect to be scheduled for classroom duty once a month, plus one backup duty day.

If you choose this option, you must be available for at least half of your child’s classes in any given month. Duty parents are required to arrive 15 minutes before class begins and are asked to stay 15 minutes after class ends. As part of Ministry regulations, duty parents cannot bring other children to school on their duty day.

Non-participating parents

This option accommodates parents who are unable to come into the classroom and requires payment of the full tuition fee.


Whether or not you choose to be a participating or non-participating family, you must serve on either a committee or the Board of Directors. Committee work or taking on a Board role are both great ways to get involved and make a difference in your child’s school!

If you have more than one child attending the preschool, you are only asked to participate in one committee or Board of Director role. Should you choose not serve in this capacity, an opt-out fee of $400 is required.


School improvement

  • Keep the classroom and playground clean and safe

  • Undertake building projects

  • Complete minor repairs

Special events

  • Help with fundraising initiatives (e.g., Scholastic orders)

  • Assist in the organization of preschool family events


  • Purchase snack items (fees reimbursed) (must be dropped off by Monday at 9 am)

IT and web support

  • Maintain the preschool website, update and manage content

  • Provide IT support for the classroom laptop and printer



  • Create and distribute the monthly newsletter


  • Ensure all fees are deposited and appropriately accounted for

  • Issue tax receipts

  • Prepare grant applications

Classroom admin assistant

  • Photocopy documents

  • Compile binders

  • Type up written notes

Board of Directors

Are you interested in being more involved with the preschool? Maybe looking to supplement your resume? Consider sitting on our Board of Directors!

Board of Director positions include:

  • President

  • Vice-President

  • Treasurer

  • Communications

  • Operations

  • Membership

  • Administrative assistant

  • School improvement

  • Secretary

  • Member-at-large

All members of the Board of Directors are required to participate in monthly Board meetings that are typically held at the preschool.

Special skills and community helpers

If you have a special skill or job that would help the preschool (e.g., painter, electrician) or might be of interest to the children (e.g., police officer, musician), we’d love to talk with you to see if we can work together. Arrangements can often be made in exchange for committee duty or fundraising.