Fishtown Playschool (FPS) is a secular cooperatively run playschool cofounded in January 2013 by eleven Fishtown area families seeking a collaborative community with whom to create enriching learning experiences for their preschoolaged children. Initially, classes were held in the founders’ living rooms on a rotating weekly basis, with members pooling resources and sharing teacher responsibilities. In July 2013, The First Presbyterian Church of Kensington became the “home” of Fishtown Playschool (although there is no religious affiliation), and the first lead teacher was hired in October 2013. In September 2014, a second classroom and second teacher were added in response to the community’s need for an expanded program.
FPS would not exist without member families. The strengths and participation of each family are the foundation of the community. In becoming a member of FPS, families agree to the extensively involved nature of our organization. Membership includes, but is not limited to, participating as a parent helper in the classroom during assigned times, volunteering time and talent in committee work, attending All Hands meetings, and actively supporting the enrichment of the children’s early childhood experiences. FPS is able to keep costs significantly low because of the unique contribution of each family. Every job is essential, and each family has a critical role in the longterm health of FPS.