KUM Preschool celebrates over 50 years of learning and growing. Our school opened in April, 1962 on a trial basis with 30 children enrolled and a staff of two teachers. The trial was a success and in the fall of 1962, KUM opened with an enrollment of 45 children and a staff of three teachers. KUM continues to offer a variety of classes with an enrollment of over 150 children. There are 20 staff members including specialists who teach movement, music, Spanish and atelier.
The classroom curriculum is designed to include a large block of time for child-directed play among the various centers in the room. During this time, teachers prepare the classroom with engaging materials and learning opportunities so that children may explore and act on their environment, observe and ask questions, and interact with others. Activities are also provided to practice emerging, age-appropriate skills during teacher directed, small group activities. Further options are also offered throughout the week to enrich the child’s school experience.
The Co-op Program
Due to health and safety concerns related to Covid-19, the board voted at our June Board meeting to postpone the Co-Op program for the 2020-2021 school year, in order to maintain static grouping and reduce exposure with the extra amount of parent helpers entering the building daily. The board approved a 5-6% tuition increase to help balance the budget. This will help us hire the assistants necessary to continue with our fall reunion.
KUM Preschool is a co-op program. Parents work alongside their child’s classroom teacher as the assistant in the classroom, aiding in tasks such as small group projects, and conflict resolution during play. Parent Helpers are encouraged to sit alongside children during group time, as well as music and movement classes and join in on the fun, modeling appropriate behavior. A Parent Help schedule is created by the Administrative Assistant. Parents will receive their Parent Help dates for the semester in August and then again in January. Parent Helpers typically only help in the classroom once a month. If a parent cannot do their Parent Help dates, there is a list of subs to call if they are not able to switch dates with another parent in the classroom. All parents are expected to view the Parent Helper Training video prior to helping in the classroom. A legal affidavit is signed by all helpers in the classroom stating that they have never been arrested of a crime involving a child. Parents are also encouraged to take the Safe Sanctuaries training led by Kirkwood UMC staff. Our Co-Op program is a unique, yet valuable, asset to our preschool. It allows teachers and families to form strong relationships as they become partners in the child’s overall development.
KUMC requires that all who serve children and youth to be Safe Sanctuaries trained. This ensures that all parties receive proper care when they are at KUMC/KUM Preschool. All teachers and staff are required to take this training every three years. This training includes a background check with the MO Dept. of Family Care Safety Registry. Parents who participate in our Co-Op program work alongside the classroom teachers as Parent Helpers. They work with children during the school day in the presence of adults who have been trained and vetted. Each Parent Helper signs a written affidavit stating that they have never been accused or convicted of a crime with a child. Parent Helpers may be required to complete a background check.
Handbook & Important Documents
Resources for Families
Parents as Teachers Programs:
Contact your home district for a Parent Educator!
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