What is a Parent Participation Preschool?

Parent Participation Preschools (PPPs) are devoted to providing a play-based environment to nurture children’s learning.   

PPPs provide families with an opportunity to be directly involved in their child’s preschool experience and to participate in community with other families.

One of the most special aspects of a PPP is the opportunity for parents to spend time in the classroom with the children. Parents serve as teacher’s assistants and help with the daily programme.  It is a chance to connect with your own child in their preschool setting and to get to know the classroom community of other children too. 


Parent Participation Preschools are different than other preschools because parents are directly involved in the operation of the preschool.

Each family in the PPP participates in three different ways:

1. "Doing Duty"

Parents serve as teacher’s assistants and help with the daily programme. We call this time in the classroom as being on duty. The average time a parent may spend in the classroom is about three hours 2 to 3 times a month. 

2. Parent Education

Once a month, the duty parent attends a parent education session (presented by early childhood education experts) and a general business meeting in the evening for two and a half hours. 

3. An Assigned Job

Each family is responsible for a job that helps ensure the smooth operation of the preschool.

There are a wide variety of jobs available. We try to match your interests or skills to the jobs.

I love duty days at St Giles because I can be fully immersed in my 4 year old’s world for a while. No phone calls, household chores, other sibling needing attention and no work pressures. This is a time for uninterrupted and uninhibited play when I am totally present with my child.


The CPPP an umbrella organization that has supported member parent participation preschools throughout mainland British Columbia for over 55 years. The purpose of the Council is to unite and assist member preschools in providing a high standard of preschool education by the supported effort of parents and teachers in a planned adult education program.

Duty days are about three hours twice a month. The parent education and general meeting is two and a half hours in the evening once a month. The time you spend on your job in the preschool will vary.  Some jobs regularly require about an hour each week, while others, such as compiling the end-of-year slideshow, are done in shorter but more intense bursts.   Although it can be challenging to find time in our busy lives, parents invariably find duty days rewarding and the parent education evenings illuminating.

There are a wide variety of jobs available for the families. An Executive Committee with jobs such as President, Treasurer, and Enrollment, works closely with our teachers to provide an enriching and nurturing environment for our children.  Other jobs include fund-raising, sorting children’s art for them to take home, class photographer, selecting books for the classroom, and gardening.  We try to match your interests or skills to the jobs.  For example, if you have an interest in sewing, your responsibility may be to sew items for the dress-up area. If you have a background in accounting, you may be most helpful to the preschool as our treasurer.

Yes!  Many families at St. Giles have two working parents.  As long as you have a degree of flexibility in your working hours, it is possible for working parents to join a PPP.  Many working parents find doing duty a great way to spend time with their child during these exciting preschool years.  It is also possible for a grandparent, nanny, or other caregiver to do the duty days for your child.  If you have questions about how other working families have managed this in the past, feel free to email us at: stgilespreschool@gmail.com