About Valley Drive
Valley Drive Cooperative Preschool is a community of families who take an active role in their children’s preschool experience.
Founded in 1958, Valley Drive is a parent-run, non-sectarian, cooperative preschool. Our purpose is to furnish the best possible educational opportunities at the most reasonable cost. Members are accepted regardless of race, sex, national origin, or religion.
As a cooperative school, Valley Drive parents work together and with school staff to give our children a great preschool experience.
Valley Drive is licensed by the State of Virginia and is a member of the Virginia Cooperative Preschool Council (VCPC). To learn more about the VCPC, visit http://vcpcschools.org/.
In 1958, the Valley Drive Cooperative Day School was founded by a group of parents who wanted to provide good preschool education for their children. Over 50 years later, the cooperative model still remains in practice. Parents and teachers organize, administer and operate our program. Under teacher direction, parents work as co-teachers in the classroom. Parents get the unique opportunity to observe their child’s development and to learn ways to facilitate this process. We also feel that children benefit from parent participation in their early social and educational experiences. For more information on specific tasks, see the Parent Participation page.
While we recognize the crucial importance of skills such as reading and math as children approach elementary school, play is the primary vehicle for preschool growth. It is our conviction that our students are nurtured best through a healthy emotional orientation toward school. We provide constructive play opportunities for students to develop skills that will aid their success in elementary school.
In addition, Valley Drive places values exploration in music and the natural world, so every class devotes a portion of their week to music, science/exploration, art, and yoga.
Goals for Our Children
Membership in a cooperative preschool is a family experience. We share aims, benefits, and responsibilities. It is an opportunity for our children to:
- Be themselves and develop at their own rate
- Express themselves freely and constructively through art media and play
- Learn to be tolerant, creative, cooperative, and imaginative
- Learn to be independent and to solve their own problems
- Enjoy a preschool experience that will facilitate adjustment to elementary and other school situations
- Establish close relationships with adults other than those in their families
- Learn limits of behavior regarding safety, health, and respect for the rights of others
- Build feelings of self-confidence and security
- Extend and enrich their understanding of the world
- Increase their ability to handle their emotions
Valley Drive Preschool Director, Cindy Hodgkins
Cindy has a B.S. in Child Development from the University of Maine. Before staying at home to raise her three daughters, she taught second grade and kindergarten for several years.
Cindy’s first involvement with Valley Drive was as a co-oping parent in September 1984. She started working for the preschool as the Curriculum Director in 1986, and she has been here ever since!