Parent Involvement

CEC Program Handbooks:

Infant-Toddler and Preschool Program

School-Age Program

Cooperative Preschool at Caltech

Parent Participation

As a nonprofit organization, the CEC requires contributions of money and time from a variety of sources outside of program fees to sustain the service that it provides. First and foremost, we rely upon our population of parents, the chief adult beneficiaries of our service, to provide our basic foundation of support.

It is the general consensus of a succession of Boards of Trustees that the mandatory requirement of Infant/Toddler and Preschool parents providing service to the organization results in benefits that include the following:

  • An increased awareness of and positive involvement in the program that contributes, in part, to ensuring the success and continued quality of the program
  • Identification and utilization of skills of parents with specific talents which would otherwise be unobtainable or expensive to acquire
  • Increased satisfaction on the part of parents because of their involvement
  • A reduction in program costs and thus tuition rates
  • A strengthening of the community atmosphere of the program through a fostering of mutual knowledge and appreciation among CEC members

Getting Started

Infant-Toddler and Preschool Parents
2016-2017 MASTER SIGN-UP

Your best source for finding Parent Participation opportunities is the This Week e-newsletter that is distributed via e-mail each Tuesday (if you are not receiving the This Week, please contact the office). In the bulletin, you will be informed of what the opportunity is, how to volunteer and what type of hours the activity counts towards. You may also check with your room’s Lead Teachers and the CEC office for additional opportunities and/or information.

Each time you complete a Parent Participation activity, record the number of hours, date and type of activity in the Parent Hours binder in the office.

How Many Hours Are Needed?

Upon enrollment, each CEC family has agreed to volunteer at least 16 hours if enrolled part-time and 24 hours if full-time. The number of hours required is per family and not per child.

Families have the entire program year to complete their hours (unless your child’s last day in the program is prior to the end of the year). Please know, though, that your August tuition statement will show a charge for any outstanding hours (please see Frequently Asked Questions below) even though you have until the end of the program year to complete them.

What Counts as Hours?

Repairing books, doing laundry for the room, toy washing, envelope stuffing, helping with event set-up and clean-up, sewing and moving the CEC vans just to name a few. However, we do ask that a family’s total hours are divided amongst the following categories:

  • Work Day: 8 hours
  • Fund Development: 4 hours
  • Miscellaneous: 4 hours if part-time; 12 hours if full-time

How will you know what Parent Participation activity fulfills which category? Simple: we’ll tell you in advance! For example, laundry counts as a Miscellaneous activity while serving on the Annual Benefit committee or helping with an Annual Fund mailing counts as Fund Development. And sometimes, an activity can be more than one category–for example, assisting with clean-up for the Annual Benefit can count as either a Fund Development or Work Day activity–and we’ll let you know that, too.

How will you know how much time an activity earns? In general, however long it takes you to complete an activity is the number of hours earned. For example, if you help with a mailing project and it takes 2 hours to stuff and label 150 envelopes, then you would record your time in the Parent Hours Notebook as 2 hours. The only exception is laundry, which counts as ½ hour per load. For some special activities, such as moving vans or Board service, we will let you know if they fulfill all your hours for the year.

Frequently Asked Questions

Why are families required to do hours? There are numerous benefits to both the program and families, including: a strengthening of the parent-child-Center relationship; increased involvement in the program which contributes, in part, to insuring its continued quality; and a strengthening of the community atmosphere.

What if hours aren’t completed? Any hours not completed will be billed at $25.00 per hour. A family may also choose to “buy out” of participation at the above rate.

What if my family enters after the program year begins or leaves prior to the end of the program year? Parent participation hours are pro-rated for either situation and you’ll be notified what amount of hours you will need to complete.

Thank you, in advance, for your time and efforts – your involvement truly makes the CEC the special place it is for children, families and staff!