Childcare center works together

Posted: Thursday, February 20, 2014 4:00 pm

Childcare center works together

By Geoff Bruce


A new type of daycare has opened its doors to parents interested in having greater involvement with the care of both their own children as well as their children’s classmates.

Little Turtles’ Childcare Cooperative, at 706 Emerson St., opened in September. It currently serves 15 children and families.

“We run on a cooperative model. That means that parents get to have a say in all of the operations of the center,” Jessica Sarah Fox-Wilson said. “Parents attend meetings where we make decisions about curriculum.”

The children of Little Turtles’ are supervised by certified teachers who are in charge of the day-to-day care and education. Parents’ volunteer responsibilities could include directly spending time with children or can be done in off-time by running the center’s Facebook page or preparing a presentation to be a part of the curriculum.

“The teachers are fully certified and any parent that interacts with the kids does have to complete some state-mandated training,” Fox-Wilson said.

For Fox-Wilson, some of her volunteer duties include running the care center’s Facebook page.

Parents that become involved with Little Turtles’ will be labeled as part-owners of the center. There will be no initial down-payment for the ownership stake.

“Each family’s contribution of our tuition plus volunteer time supports our member ownership,” Fox-Wilson said. “It’s a unique model for sure.”

Little Turtles’ Childcare Cooperative received 3 stars from the Wisconsin Department of Children and Families’ Youngstars program. The program aims to improve the quality of childcare for Wisconsin children by evaluating and rating the quality of care given by providers in order to help parents make choices in regard to the environment they select for their children.

“It helps to make sure we meet certain requirements for care and curriculum. (3 stars) is the best rating we are able to obtain in our first year,” Fox-Wilson said.

With a 3 star rating, parents involved with Little Turtles’ can reap reimbursement through the Wisconsin Shares program.

Fox-Wilson has found that a cooperative model for her choice of childcare has been beneficial for both her child and herself.

“The biggest benefit for me as a parent is being able to get to know the community of parents and children that my child interacts with,” Fox-Wilson said. “I’ve become good friends with people there.

Prices for attendance at Little Turtles’ range according to age, but are generally around $5 per hour with tuition decreasing for older children.

Families interested in getting involved with the Little Turtles’ Childcare Cooperative can call 608-362-2965 or find the cooperative on Facebook by searching for Little Turtles’ Playhouse.

“We get to have much more of a community here. If there’s something I want to see changed or some idea I want to implement, I’m able to communicate easily,” Fox-Wilson said.

Fox-Wilson also notes that with the diverse volunteer duties, parents with complicated work schedules should not feel dissuaded from becoming involved.

“We’re pretty flexible in terms of what would constitute a volunteer opportunity. We have parents able to adapt it to their schedules.”


Thursday, February 20, 2014 4:00 pm.

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Childcare center works together
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カテゴリー: Childcare   パーマリンク


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