Welcome to

Open Minds Homeschool Co-op

An INCLUSIVE Homeschool Co-op in Temple, Texas

Hello from the Open Minds Co-op!

Our goal is to provide an inclusive co-op where homeschooling families can come together to learn, grow, share ideas, and support each other in a positive group learning environment.

We meet at the Ralph Wilson Youth Center in Temple — a beautiful, newly-built facility with amenities such as a covered patio, a big outdoor playground, spacious classrooms, and a fantastic gym.

We have an exciting semester planned for Fall 2016; check out the upcoming class offerings!

What's so awesome about it?

We are Inclusive

As our name indicates, this co-op is "open" or inclusive. We are only intolerant of intolerance :) No "statement of faith" required, but we ask everyone to sign a code of conduct agreeing to be respectful of all persons and property at the co-op.

Minimal Fees

Fees are only collected to cover the cost of renting classroom space and materials fees paid to the teachers. Materials fees average $15/class but are at teacher's discretion. Registration is a flat fee of $65 per family.

Parents Participate

Classes are taught by parent volunteers. Parent involvement, either teaching or assisting in classes, is required. Everyone is asked to stay and help where needed.

A picture paints a thousand words

Check out some of the fun things we've done!

What's going on?

Keep up to date with our upcoming events

Frequently Asked Questions

(or "All the Other Stuff You Need to Know")

Q: Where do you meet?

We meet at the Ralph Wilson Youth Club, located at 1515 S. 25th Street, Temple, TX, 76504.

Q: What day(s) do you meet?

We meet on Friday mornings from 9am - 12pm for 12 weeks each semester. Exact dates vary each semester and can be found on our home page.

Q: Do I have to sign a "statement of faith" in order to join?

No. As the name indicates, this co-op is "open" or inclusive of everyone. We are only intolerant of intolerance. No "statement of faith" required, but we do ask everyone to sign a code of conduct agreeing to be respectful of all persons and property at the co-op.

Q: Must I sign my child up for all three classes?

No. It's fine to sign up for just the classes you want; however, the parent/responsible adult will still need to fulfill their volunteer obligation to the co-op, which generally means teaching or helping on Friday for two of the three co-op hours.

Q: Do you accept children with special needs?

If your child has needs that would require special accomodations, contact an officer of the co-op BEFORE registering for any classes. We would like every child to have the opportunity to attend co-op and will do our best to work with you; however, please understand that, as an organization comprised solely of parent volunteers, we may not be able to accomodate every request.

Also, please understand that classes are intended to be a positive experience for everyone involved; sometimes, teachers have to make a judgment call regarding whether a student can be successful in their class without taking too many resources from other students (for example, if a child will need more help than usual for that age range in a class with a limited number of helpers). Teachers have the final say regarding whether a child will be able to participate in his/her class.

Q: Okay, I'm definitely interested in joining the co-op. What do I do next?

  1. Check out the class offerings for the next scheduled semester. (Dates for the next scheduled semester can be found on the calendar. Class offerings are generally posted a few weeks to a month before registration begins. If the class schedule hasn't been posted yet, check back periodically.)
  2. If you decide that the classes will be a good fit for your family, be sure to read the rest of these FAQs- especially behavioral expectations, co-op rules, etc.
  3. Plan to attend the Open House scheduled for the upcoming semester. This will let you meet other co-op members, see the facility, clarify expectations, and ask questions. It is also a requirement for joining the co-op.
  4. On the information website, apply for membership in the co-op. Once your request is approved, you will be able to sign in to the members-only website and register for classes.

Feel free to email us at openmindscoop@gmail.com with any problems or questions.

Q: What is your Absetee and Substitution Policy?

Absentee and Substitute Policy:

We understand that there are unexpected circumstances and that absences will occur. We do ask that you try to minimize these. Everyone is expected to act as a substitute teacher when necessary. Our Secretary will keep a rotation list and contact each person when/if a substitute teacher or helper is needed.

If you know you will be out…
  • Contact the teachers/assistants that you work with as soon as possible. They will need to be prepared.
  • Contact the current Secretary – by phone call or text message before 8:30 am of the day of co-op.
  • Contact phone numbers for co-op members are in the database on the homeschool-life.com website.

Excused absences include any in which the Secretary and appropriate teachers/assistants are notified prior to 8:30 am on the day of the co-op meeting. All absences in which the appropriate members are not notified prior to 8:30 am are considered unexcused except in the case of an emergency.

After two unexcused absences or four total absences, you will be asked to sit out the rest of the semester, but may return the following semester. If a member is asked to sit out for two consecutive semesters, that member will not be invited back to Co-Op indefinitely.

In case of an emergency, notify the Secretary as soon as possible. True emergencies will count as excused absences.

By minimizing the absences it will help classes to run more smoothly and those who attend regularly will not be over-burdened.

Q: What is your Illness and Absentee Policy?

Illness Policy:

We know how much your child enjoys coming to co-op and that they never want to miss a day. However, in the event that your child becomes sick, please stay home.

Keep me home if…
  • I'm vomiting (two or more times in 24 hours)
  • I have a rash, lice, or nits (body rash, especially with a fever or itching)
  • I have diarrhea (3 or more watery stools in 24 hours)
  • I have an eye infection (thick mucus or pus draining from the eye)
  • I have a sore throat (with a fever or swollen glands)
  • I'm just not feeling very good (unusually tired, pale, lack of appetite, confused or cranky)
  • I have a fever (temperature of 100.4° (F) or more, taken orally or in the ear, 99.4 under the arm)
Children who have been ill may return when:
  • They are free of fever, vomiting, and diarrhea for a full 24 hours.
  • They have been treated with an antibiotic for a full 24 hours (when needed).
  • They are able to participate comfortably in all usual school activities, including outdoor time.

Q: What is your Code of Conduct?

Youth Contract:
  • Know your adult (the person who is responsible for you while you are at co-op). Always let this adult know where you are.
  • Show respect by being kind...to people, things, furniture, and facilities.
  • Show respect by following the co-op rules.
  • You can expect respect from other children and adults.
  • Having trouble? Ask another child or adult for help.
  • Remember...
    • Respect your teachers. They set the rules in the classroom. If you don't agree with the rules, tell your adult.
    • No running, climbing, or loud noises (with the exception of when you are in the gym or on the playground) and no wandering away from the co-op area.
    • Always leave the co-op neat.
    • Everyone helps. That shows respect!

Parent Agreement:
  • I will honor and agree to help my child honor the guidelines outlined in the Youth Contract and the co-op rules.
  • Children should not be left unattended.
  • If I am unable to remain on the premises at any time during co-op hours, I will designate another adult to be responsible for my child(ren). I will also notify a co-op teacher of any arrangements I have made.
  • I will make sure my child understands and feels good about this arrangement.
  • I understand that the co-op is not responsible for a child left without a designated adult.

Q: What are the co-op rules?

Co-op Rules:
  1. No running, climbing, or shouting in the co-op building. Exceptions are the gym and playground.
  2. Rooms/areas not designated as classrooms are off-limits.
  3. Food is ONLY allowed in the Nutrition Room, Multipurpose Room, covered patio, and playground. Absolutely NO food, drinks, or water bottles of any kind in the gym.
  4. Per Ralph Wilson’s rules, NO gum or Wheelie shoes are allowed.
  5. Everyone cleans up. Take proper care of Ralph Wilson property and facilities. Leave the building better than you found it.
  6. No cursing, profanity, and abusive language (including on clothing).
  7. Be kind, respectful, and helpful to the teachers and other students.
  8. Be on time. A teacher may choose to dismiss students who are chronically late (three times or more in one semester) from their class.
  9. It is the duty of all students to follow the rules.
  10. It is the duty of all parents to remind students to follow the rules.
  11. In class, the teacher sets the rules. Students who disagree with these rules should talk to their parent. From there, the parent can talk to the teacher or to an officer, if needed.
    If a rule is broken, the student breaking the rule will be reminded. If the rule is persistently broken, that student’s parent will be notified; the parent is responsible for helping deal with the problem, both on an immediate and long-term basis. A student who refuses to listen to the teacher and assistants, even after reminders, may be asked to leave the class for that day. If the student has to be asked to leave the class three times in one semester, he/she may not be allowed back into the class.
  12. All parents/adults should help clean up after co-op. If you taught/assisted in a room during any period, go to that room directly at the end of co-op to make sure all messes have been cleaned up, personal belongings removed, and chairs and tables put back the way they were. This includes the playground and the covered patio.
  13. Once your area is done, please don’t hang around to chat; we rent the facility from 9 am - noon and need to vacate it in a reasonable time. Park day is a great place to visit.

Q: Can I send my child to co-op without me?

Generally, no. Since this is a co-op, parents are expected to pitch in and help run things. However, if you occasionally need to be absent, you can still send your child to co-op as long as you have arranged a designated adult to be responsible for your child. Your child should know who their designated adult is, so that he/she knows who to go to if he/she needs help.

It is also your responsibility to find someone to cover your co-op duties in the event of an absence.

Feel free to contact us

We are happy to answer any additional questions you might have.

Send us an email: OpenMindsCoop@gmail.com

Or visit us on Facebook: Open Minds Homeschool Co-op