Mission and Core Values

In a large city like New York, The Co-op School provides a safe and stimulating micro-environment where students experiment and learn. All members of The Co-op School — students, families and staff — contribute to the development of our unique culture and participate in and improve our community and beyond. As students learn to work together, preparing for a global environment, families also work in committees and on the board to support the school. Whether painting walls, assembling furniture, growing the school through various initiatives, and much more, we all help The Co-op School flourish. Meanwhile, faculty collaborate to create learning opportunities that evolve with students’ strengths and interests in addition to utilizing best practices. Teachers guide students in the dynamic, life-long process of questioning and deepening connections. Through far-reaching social studies projects enriched through literature, math, science and the arts, students make decisions, research and reflect.

Students will leave The Co-op School confident to effect change in the community and comfortable reflecting on ways to challenge and grow themselves. As creative problem solvers, each with unique viewpoints and learning styles, students will embrace the idea of a more equitable world. We strive to inspire passion and teach children to become protagonists in their own educational journey by fostering their innate sense of curiosity and creativity. We listen to and honor the individual interests and strengths of each child.

We, The Co-op School , believe in the following Core Values:

  1. Compassion: We value and nurture the strength of character it takes to work together as a team, to be an individual, to respect differences of opinions, and have the ability to empathize with others.
  2. Uniqueness: We value and nurture the confidence that leads to risk taking, problem solving, and taking pride in one’s own point of view.
  3. Innovation: We value and nurture curiosity, imagination, creativity, experimentation and perseverance when faced with challenges.
  4. Community Action: We value and nurture an overall awareness, respect and care for our surroundings, community and environment.
  5. Joy: We value and nurture the simple joy of playing, learning, and friendship making.

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Statement of Inclusivity

The Co-op School is an inclusive community. We welcome and celebrate students and families who represent the diversity of Brooklyn and beyond, as it relates to race, ethnicity, gender, family structure, religion, sexual orientation, socio-economic class and physical ability. We encourage students and families to share their whole selves. The Co-op School strives to help our students recognize and honor how we are different and how we are the same. We are committed to anti-bias teaching, which for young children is as much about precluding the formation of biases as it is disproving their myths.

Conversations and explorations differ and might include Pre-K students discussing a variety of family structures, or thinking about the different roles that are expected of different people; Kindergartners might help each other examine paints to find a skin color match for a self portrait, noticing the wide variety of shades; or a First Grade debate during a Parks study about the fairness of park locations relative to the city’s different neighborhoods, or who was displaced for “the public good” when new parks were built.

An inclusive community promotes an understanding of experiences and viewpoints other than our own. Ultimately, this will extend beyond the walls of our school and lead to broader explorations of equity and social justice.