Our Philosophy

Your child comes first in the warm, caring atmosphere of CPI. The primary goals of our program are for your child to feel good about himself/herself and to enjoy school. CPI’s teachers enthusiastically support your child’s curiosity and creativity while teaching skills such as listening, following directions, getting along with others, sharing, making choices, and following classroom rules. Each day your child will explore and create by participating in art, sensory, science, music, dramatic play, free play, outdoor play, manipulatives, and blocks.

Primary Goal

CPI’s primary goal in all classes is for our children to enjoy school and to have positive feelings about school and themselves. During the course of the year, CPI’s teachers will work on the following skills, with emphasis on the social skills at the level appropriate for each age:

  • Self Discovery & Independence
  • Communicating with Others
  • Development of Self-Help Skills
  • Good Safety Habits
  • Sharing with Others
  • Respecting Others
  • Self-Control
  • Self-Expression
  • Fine & Gross Motor Skill Development
  • Following Directions
  • Learning to Work in a Classroom Atmosphere
  • Listening to Others

CPI encourages balanced growth by placing equal emphasis on each of the four main phases of a child’s development: physical, intellectual, social and emotional. This philosophy is the guiding force behind planning the daily schedules and activities. CPI’s daily planned activities and play provide enjoyment and learning through exploration and experimentation. Good teaching involves providing guidance and direction and reinforcing positive development of each child at CPI. It is accomplished at CPI through the cooperation of parents and teachers in creating the best possible environment for this critical period of development.

CPI policy dictates that our teaching staff handles behavior problems with a mixture of time outs and positive reinforcement for good behavior. Children are always spoken to with respect in a calm voice, and the striking of a child is never permitted under any circumstance. The teaching staff will notify the Vice President of any serious behavior problem that they feel is beyond their reasonable ability to control and of cases where other children’s safety is in jeopardy. In these cases, the Board will determine when and if the child should be removed from the program.

Physical Development

Children learn most easily through guided play activities. Through the use of crayons, finger paints, building blocks, glue, scissors, and seasonal outdoor activities, our children are exposed to excellent opportunities for the early development of small and large muscles and hand-eye coordination.

Intellectual Development

Listening to stories, poems and records, sharing ideas through discussions, play acting, finger plays, games and short field trips all help in the intellectual development of our children. They develop and strengthen their powers of observation, concentration, imagination, and memory. The children are encouraged to think creatively, distinguish between things that are real and things imaginary, and to express their opinions of objects and ideas. Field trips with the group to places of interest and similar activities help to broaden their experiences and add to their self-confidence and independence. Their memories are sharpened by activities involving the recounting of the new experiences they have at CPI.

Social Development

Our children get their first lessons in community living at CPI by becoming contributing members of the group. They learn to share, take turns, help their companions, receive help from others, interact with other children to achieve common goals without causing friction and follow as well as lead the group. They learn to share experiences through their conversations with others, to listen while others talk and that it can be fun to contribute to group conversations.

Emotional Development

Teachers and participating parents make children feel wanted, loved, and secure in what is for many their first experience away from home for any length of time. The preschool provides our children with a receptive and constructive forum for the expression of their feelings. We work to help them enhance their individuality, confidence, and self-assurance, while exposing them to group rules. They learn self-control, self-reliance, and are provided with opportunities to make choices. Consideration for others is always encouraged.

History of CPI

CPI was created in the summer of 1969 to fill the need for a parent participation nursery school in the Centreville area. The forerunner of CPI was a loosely organized cooperative playgroup of two- to four-year-old children. This cooperative was subsequently incorporated as an accredited Virginia non-profit corporation. The name Centreville Preschool, Inc. was adopted at the start of the 1970-71 school year. After a brief period of operation in local homes, the school began holding classes at Ox Hill Baptist Church in Chantilly in September 1971. In 1979, CPI moved to Centreville Methodist Church where it remained until May 1985. CPI then moved to Newgate Blvd. in Centreville, where a great deal of hard work by CPI members transformed a former residence into an excellent cooperative education facility. Those efforts were rewarded when CPI was named Preschool of the Year for 1986/87 and 1990/91 by the Virginia Cooperative Preschool Council (formerly the Northern Virginia Council of Parent Participation Nursery Schools)! The move to our current location at 13916 Braddock Road in Centreville was completed in time for the 1991/92 school year. Our new home was again transformed into an excellent learning environment for our children thanks to the hard work and dedication of our parents and teachers.