The Takoma Park Cooperative Nursery School is a parent-participatory model school. Parental involvement and volunteerism are essential for our continued success. It is parents’ willingness to participate and do their share that enables the smooth operation of the School, supports a strong educational program, and results in cost savings for member families. We hope parent involvement also nurtures educational advocacy skills that extend beyond our walls. We have outlined participation requirements here, and we are interested in how your family will help continue the School’s legacy. 

Inside the Classroom. The parent’s role in the classroom is to guide, engage, nurture, and celebrate each child (not just his or her own child). Parents work together with teachers to deliver the curriculum designed by the teacher. Each family is scheduled to work in the classroom on a bi-weekly or weekly basis. In addition to acting as assistants to the teacher, each time you co-op, you will be assigned a specific job — safely guiding children from the parking lot to the school entrance, working with students on their journals, providing a nutritious snack, and/or performing housekeeping duties. 

Outside the Classroom. Outside the classroom, parents support the School by attending monthly membership meetings (one member/family). In order to better prepare the parent, co-oping parents attend periodic training sessions, review information and classroom support materials provided by the Director or teachers, and receive feedback regarding classroom work.

Parents at the School assume administrative roles essential to the School’s operation. Each family holds one committee or Board position.  All co-oping parents submit criminal background checks and medical forms before working in the classroom or serving on the board or as committee chair.


In preparing your application, please consider how your interests and skills dovetail with the descriptions described below. The information you provide helps us determine how your family could support the administrative needs of the School. Please direct any questions to the Admissions Team at admissions@tpcns.org.

Board Positions. The Cooperative School is a not-for-profit corporation governed by a parent Board of Directors and the School Director. Board members must be current members and are elected by the membership.

Co-Presidents: Work with the School Director to manage the operations of the School and lead new initiatives to advance the School’s purpose and mission; advise the committee chairs; manage staff relations and contracts; and provide leadership for the member families.

Admissions (Co-Vice Presidents): Manage the application/admissions process for the School, including developing an applicant pool, coordinating annual admissions information sessions and tours, reviewing applications, and communicating with prospective applicants.

Treasurer: Maintains records related to the School's budget and finances and ensures that the day-to-day financial needs of the School are met.

Secretary: Takes minutes at monthly Board and membership meetings and ensures that accurate/sufficient documentation exists to meet legal requirements.

Member Support Chair: See committee description.

Survival Guide Chair: See committee description.

Development Chair: See committee description.

Administrative Committees

Survival Guide Committee (10-12 members): Coordinates the ad sales campaign for and production of the Takoma Park Business Directory & Survival Guide. The committee works together to maintain and update the Survival Guide business database; update and edit the Survival Guide’s front sections; prepare for and manage the School-wide ad sales campaign; coordinate with the production editor on layout, editing, and printing; and organize School-wide distribution to Takoma Park households in May.   All member families work together to sell ads and distribute the Survival Guide. 

Development Committee (4-6 mem): Works with the School Director and Board of Directors to plan and implement long-term strategies related to the School’s assets and public profile, including capital campaigns and the School’s onlinepresence.

Building & Grounds Chair/Committee (6-8 mem): Maintains all interior and exterior School spaces according to relevant agency codes and regulations and in a manner that is safe, healthy, and organized for use by young children.

Member Support (5 mem): Works to build community within individual classes and the School as a whole through coordination of play groups, community support, parent networking opportunities, and school-wide events. Develops co-oping schedules for each class and coordinates teacher gifts. 

Outreach Chair/Committee (6-8 mem): Ensures consistent messaging and outreach aimed at increasing awareness of the School; building a strong applicant pool; reconnecting alumni; and keeping friends and community leaders engaged. Coordinates events that extend the mission of the School in the wider community.

Web Coordinator: maintains the School’s intranet and internet resources (members.tpcns.org , takomacooperativeschool.org, and platforms including surveygizmo, email lists, and member data). 

Relocation Coordinator: supports the Co-Presidents and the Board in finding, analyzing and securing a new location for the school.

The following positions require 2 years experience as a member:

Parent Education Coordinator: designs, refines, documents and implements the school’s parent education and training curriculum, in collaboration with the Director/Board.

Librarian/Archivist: maintains the selection of books at the School; helps house the School’s institutional knowledge and allow easier sharing of committees’ records and working documents from year to year.