University Parents Nursery School (UPNS) is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit cooperative preschool that has served the UCLA community and beyond for over 50+ years to provide a welcoming, diverse and vibrant community. We partner with parents to foster an environment of playful learning fueled by compassionate and loving teachers, where children can feel safe, nurtured, and respected. Our warm and caring staff are passionate and dedicated educators who are the heart and foundation of our school. Through the decades of love and trust they have built up within our community, our beloved teachers are the reason families choose UPNS time and time again - and now they need our help more than ever.
During this difficult and unprecedented time, we need to make decisions about continuing to pay our teacher's salaries and benefits. Of course, we want to do everything we can to support our wonderful teachers, who continue to work hard, developing creative pathways to virtual enrichment programs our current students can continue to benefit from, even now.
It has been my great privilege and joy to have served as Director to the UPNS community for over 25 years. I never pictured anything other than UPNS being a safe haven for our children and families for years to come. Yet, on March 13th, my heart sank when we made the deliberate decision to temporarily close our school out of an abundance of caution for the well-being of our children, families and staff due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
In an attempt to keep our families afloat, many of whom are reeling from the financial and emotional burden of this crisis, we resolved to charge a reduced tuition during the closure. Even so, I wish we could do more to help our families--many of whom are struggling with no options for childcare while facing employment challenges and other hardships. I am also committed to taking care of our beloved teachers, many of whom have dependents and have collectively committed 75+ dedicated years of service to UPNS as their second family, many of whom have been your children over the years.
We have some emergency reserves that will thankfully keep us afloat in the short-term but that is already being quickly depleted and ultimately, will not be sufficient to save our school from the threat of closure. We know this is a time of trauma and strain for EVERYONE, but if this letter happens to find you in a position where you are able, we are asking our extended family of Alumni, to help save our school. NO DONATION IS TOO SMALL - especially since we know it is an extension of your love, which cannot be measured in dollars anyway.
I know we will come out of this stronger and more dedicated to our purpose. Our families, teachers and I await the day when we will once again be able to open our doors to our cherished children and families. I am so thankful to be a part of this strong and vibrant community.
Thank you so much for thinking of us during this difficult time and please stay safe!