Our former policy was that each member family needed to earn 4 teaching credits annually to remain in good standing. However, we found that proposals dropped off significantly during the Spring sessions, and that classes were being offered by a small group of teachers. Also, it became a financial strain as families would use the credits they'd earned beyond the required 4 for free classes, usually in the Spring. It was also difficult for members to keep track of how many credits they'd earned.
The nature of a co-op is inherently different from most other organizations we engage with on a daily basis in that, in order for it to function and continue existing, all of us need to contribute in a substantial way. This means that each member family, in order to be a part of our community and remain members in good standing, needs to contribute to co-op in a variety of capacities. The Board understands that every family's situation is unique, and that some member families are better suited to some tasks than to others. We are willing to work with each family to find a solution that allows them to contribute in ways that work for them, but members must also be committed to contributing their time and energy in substantive ways.
As a result, we are piloting a new credit-earning policy to more equitably spread the burden of the work that co-op entails. Your family will need to earn 1 credit each session you attend; new members are exempt from this requirement during the first session they attend (we want you just to get a sense of what our community is all about, and to help your child/ren acclimate). You must attend at least 4 weeks of the 6-week session to earn credits, unless you have made special arrangements with the Board via email. We understand that sometimes travel plans conflict with co-op schedules, and illnesses happen, and we are flexible and understanding folks.
There are full credit tasks, and 1/2 credit tasks.
Full credit tasks are the following:
*Teaching -- for every class you teach, you receive 1 credit.
*Recess & Cleaning monitor -- You will supervise kids outside during lunch recess and also after 4th period while the cleaners clean every week of the session.
*Kitchen cleaner -- you are responsible for cleaning the kitchen, including the coffee stuff every week of the session during 4th period or after co-op.
*co-teaching -- for every class you co-teach, you earn 1/2 credit
*Early arrival & set up -- if you sign up for this, you must arrive at 9am and help set up for co-op every week of the session.
*nursery supervision -- for each class period you supervise little ones in the nursery whose parents are teaching for the session, you earn 1/2 credit (if done every week of the session).
*table wiper -- after lunch, each of us is responsible for picking up after ourselves and wiping down our tables, but, often, wiping the tables gets forgotten in the rush to go play outside. We need 1 person each session to wipe the tables after lunch each week.
*floater/sub -- this individual will be "on call" to fill in wherever needed during the session if teachers are absent, or if a class needs a little extra help
*being responsible for switching the chairs in Dudde Hall at the end of the day each week of the session, making sure that the brown metal chairs are neatly stacked on the carts/against the wall and that the padded blue chairs are around the tables.
For each credit your family earns beyond the 1 credit required each session, you will earn 1 free class the next session that you attend. 1/2 credits will accumulate over 2 session, and will be applied to your account once they equal 1 credit.
So, for example, Suzie Q. loves to teach, and decides to teach 2 classes during Fall 1. Sally will receive 1 of her child's classes for free the next session they attend. William doesn't want to teach, but is always happy to co-teach, and co-teaches 3 periods. His family earns 1.5 credits. William's family will not earn any free classes this session, but when they earn their next .5 credit above the required credit, will get the free class the session that follows. Antonia feels really uncomfortable about teaching, but loves to be outside, so she serves as recess monitor, and arrives early every week to help set up, and supervises the nursery one period a week, earning her family 2 credits that session (1 free class next session).
It is our hope that, in diversifying and quantifying the ways that members can contribute, this policy will not only take some of the burden off of the Board, but also allow those who would prefer to serve in capacities other than as teachers to do so.
Please note that this is very much a work-in-progress, and that we are always open to constructive criticism, as well as suggestions on tasks, etc.