Families Together Cooperative Nursery School provides a play-based educational environment in which children thrive and parents are integral to the life of the school. At our core is a commitment to diversity and equity, genuine collaboration between educators, families and children, and a creative and flexible approach to supporting each child’s cognitive, social and emotional growth.
FTCNS, a cooperative preschool on Chicago’s north side, will be highly regarded as a unique educational program recognized for excellence in:
The school that would eventually become Families Together Cooperative Nursery School (FTCNS) began more than 30 years ago in Evanston, when a community parent/tot playgroup decided to take steps to become a formal cooperative school. The group had a deep desire to be involved in their children’s education and became licensed as the Evanston Cooperative Nursery School (ECNS).
In the late 1990s, due to building issues, ECNS needed a new home. At this time, parents from Immanuel Lutheran Church’s parent/tot program in Chicago’s Edgewater neighborhood, known as the “Together Program”, wanted to start a cooperative nursery school to be housed at Immanuel Lutheran. Michelle Knapp, the Together Program founder, suggested the group’s parents observe other area co-ops to find a strong model. One parent observed ECNS and learned it was looking for a new home in either Evanston or Chicago. After a search in both cities, the ECNS Board chose Immanuel Lutheran as the new home for its co-op.
In September 1999 Families Together Cooperative Nursery School opened at Immanuel Lutheran as a licensed nursery school offering a Mixed Age program. By 2001, due to parent demand, FTCNS had expanded to offer a Nursery program and a Pre-K program. A Young 3’s program was added in 2004.
Today our school serves 90 students a year in its five classes. We are a proud, engaged, collaborative community. Families Together Cooperative Nursery School is children, parents and teachers together...learning about and from one another.