Upcoming Events

Open House!!!

Thursday, July 27, 2017!

5:00 pm - 7:00 pm

Summer Enrollment

Now accepting enrollment for the 2016-17 school year for children ages 2-5 years old!    For more information or to schedule a tour please email info@parentcoop.org or call 773-684-6363.

Help GoFundUS!

Help our children grow and learn! Our Parent Co-op for Early Learning is a godsend for working families in the Hyde Park area: affordable, high-quality, play-based education that places its priorities in the right places—top-notch teachers in a safe, nurturing environment without all the unnecessary bells and whistles. Parents lead the school and pitch in to contain costs and stay engaged with their children’s education. Won’t you help us sustain this institution filling a critical neighborhood need? Donate $40 for our first 40 years to help us thrive in the next 40, or $20 to bring us half way there! Go here to donate today! 

Donate with AmazonSmile

When you shop at smile.amazon.com Amazon Donates to PCEL!

AmazonSmile is a simple and automatic way for you to support PCEL every time you shop, at no cost to you. When you shop at smile.amazon.com, you’ll find the exact same low prices, vast selection and convenient shopping experience as Amazon.com, with the added bonus that Amazon will donate a portion of the purchase price to PCEL!


Convinced that PCEL is the right place for your little one?  Here is a quick list of application materials and information about what it means to be in the PCEL.

Blog Index
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Our Staff


Explorers Room

Imagination Station

Discovery Room



Kayla Carter

Hello! I am Kayla Carter, the new Preschool Director at PCEL. I graduated from Valdosta State University with a Bachelor of Arts Degree in English and further obtained a Master of Science in Early Childhood Education from Capella University.  I have been working with children since 2003. I participated in tutoring programs in my college community, I have served as a substitute teacher, and I have been a caregiver in early childhood centers. I have also taught English as a second language in South Korea for two years.  In 2014, I was hired as the Assistant Director at Camp Humphreys Child Development Center in South Korea. I was later appointed to the director position. I spearheaded the day to day operation of a center that served 200+ children.  Growing up as a military child and traveling extensively throughout the world, has afforded me the opportunity to work with different ethnicity of children and professionals in the field of education.  I am always learning something new to better myself as a teacher. I believe it is critical that classrooms are geared towards the individual needs of each child. I truly believe my purpose in life is operating a program where children are learning but are allowed to be creative, explore, play, and develop strong interpersonal skills.

Explorers Room (2-3 years old) 

Miss Ineke - Lead Teacher

My name is Ineke and I have 15 years of experience working with children.  I enjoy working with children and I have a great passion of seeing the children grow and develop to their full potential. Knowing that they can strive and achieve many great things with direction and support that I am able to give them and also to build and sustain their foundation of learning and exploring is an awesome feeling.

Ms. Whiteside

My name is Brenda Whiteside-Ward. I have been in the child care field over 15 years. I started as a teacher's assistant at Marcey Newberry Association on the westside of Chicago, working in a head start program with children from the ages of 3-5 years old. During that time I realized I had to go back to school to further my education. I attended several colleges taking courses in child development. During my earlier years in life I always wanted to become a preschool teacher but I changed my academic interest by taking courses at Harold Washington College to become a Social Worker and earned my AA. I soon realized my destiny was to help young children. Every morning I look forward to seeing the children's smiles and hugs and give them in return. 


Imagination Station (3-4 years old)

Miss Victoria - Lead Teacher

Hi, My name is Victoria French, have always had a passion for working with children.  I have 15 years of experience, including running my own babysitting service while working full-time, supervising a preschool program in Lemont IL. I am currently in school receiving my bachelors in ECE. I am also a Sunday school teacher and I’ve worked as a children's camp counselor at a Christian Camp in St. Charles, everything I have done has revolved around children. I am excited to accept the role as the new lead preschool teacher for the Imagination Station classroom. I'm looking forward to joining the team!


Miss Bianca 


My name is Bianca Freyre and I attended Harold Washington College, where I later graduated with an Associates Degree in General Studies. Working with children is a true passion of mine. I've had 5+ years experience working with children ages varying anywhere from 6 wks- 6 yrs olds. When I'm not with the Imagination Station I'm at home here in Chicago with my two awesome kids: Alayna and Rafael! My educational philosophy is to develop students' ability to think critically and integrate ideas, rather than to accumulate facts. Students learn best when actively engaged.


Discovery Room (4-5 years old)

Miss Arielle - Lead Teacher

My name is Arielle Lane.  I am a graduate of Roosevelt University with a double Bachelors in Psychology and Sociology. I have been working with children for the last 6 years and truly enjoy it. I look forward to my time at PCEL and I thank you for allowing me the opportunity to assist your children throughout their academic journey at Parent Cooperative for Early Learning. 

Miss Kiyana

My name is Kiyana Mercado. I have an Associates degree in Early Childhood Education. I've been working with children for the past 7 years. I love working with children and discovering new things. Also, I love it here at PCEL I've been here for the past 5 years, we are one big family. I enjoy teaching children and giving them lots of TLC.