The Denver Cooperative Preschool's mission is to guide young children on the adventure of self-discovery through play. The vision of DCP is an active society where children and adults join in the exploration of life, the quest for understanding and the journey to wisdom. We believe that:
- A child's early experience is the foundation for adult potential.
- Parents are key to a child's unique development.
- Play is essential in the learning process of a child.
The Denver Cooperative Preschool was founded in 1960 by a group of parents from the discontinued Colorado Women's College Nursery School. The head teacher of that school, Mrs. Kim Randolph, helped us to get started in a space at Montview Presbyterian Church. By 1962 the preschool had grown and a group of parents from south Denver branched off to establish the University Park Cooperative Nursery School near Denver University. In 1964 the preschool split again: Montview Community Preschool remained at the church and our preschool moved to 8th and Cherry and was named the Medical Center Cooperative Nursery School.
The name "Denver Cooperative Preschool" was adopted in 1966 with our move to St. John's Cathedral where we stayed fourteen years. We relocated to the JFK Child Development Center at 8th and Birch in 1980 at the invitation of that agency, which wished to utilize its excellent preschool facility. In 1983 DCP found a new home in the RLDS Church at 480 Marion Street, where we happily reside to this day.
Mrs. Rosalie Houghton was the Director from 1966 until her retirement in 1986. Jan Tull served as the Director from 1987 to 1996. Doria Cladis was the Director in 1997, then Sharon Cella until 2000 and Karine Drechsel until 2002. Kim Siffring was the Director until 2008, and Jamie Whetstone until April of 2011, followed by Susan Wartchow until January of 2014 and then Janee McConnell until April of 2017. Mary Nelson is the current Director of the Denver Cooperative Preschool.
Our community was founded on the knowledge that parents who are actively involved with their children's learning experience are rewarded with children who love to learn, the DCP community continues to thrive on active participation from all members. Parents enrich the preschool program by lending their special talents and abilities, while finding their own lives enriched by the connections they make with other families and the staff at the school. DCP helps to strengthen families while encouraging children on their way to becoming productive members of our society and assets to our community.
I knew I wanted to send my children to DCP before I even had them! Years ago I had the pleasure of nannying for two children who attended DCP. I witnessed their joy and excitement on school days and watched their love for learning flourish. And let's not forget the adorable art projects that they brought home!
My daughter is now in her second year at DCP and is thriving. I was slightly (just slightly!) worried about leaving her the first day- it was the first time she had been left with someone other than a family member! She took to her teachers and classroom instantly. She simply loves going to school! The environment that DCP provides for the kiddos- from the teachers to toys to activities to other students is beyond wonderful. It can be summed up in one word: magic. - Hadley
Hi, I'm Emilee. My brother Tyler went to DCP and loved it. My mommy and daddy made friends with the community and teachers just like Tyler did. When it was my turn to come, my mommy was sick and we needed help so I could have a great first start in school like Tyler did. Because of kind people like you, my family received a scholarship and I got to find out why my brother, mommy, and daddy love DCP.
Receiving a scholarship from DCP has helped our family in many ways. Our son, who is an only child, has gained social emotional skills that have helped him to express himself more effectively to relate with children and adults in more positive ways. At home we primarily speak Spanish, so learning English at DCP is giving our son the chance to be a dual language learner from a young age. DCP has provided countless positive models for behavior and learning for our son and ourselves.
Being invited into the community on our parent helper days has given us new insights and ideas as to how we can help our son. Thanks to this scholarship we've been able to enjoy all the benefits DCP has to offer. It has been very fulfilling to participate in the community and not only learn with our child but be able to help and give back to other families by participating in the cooperative model. Our son absolutely loves coming to school and
we are thankful for the scholarship that has allowed us this invaluable opportunity.
- Heffron Family