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Membership Requirements

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Membership Requirements

Membership Overview 2018-2019

Members are schools and organizations providing education, care, and services for children from birth to age eight (or third grade).  The Alliance currently consists of 59 Member schools and organizations in the North Shore of Chicago.



  • Community Initiatives:  The Alliance for Early Childhood was founded in 1989 to promote the healthy growth and development of young children.  The Alliance provides events and initiatives throughout the year to bring families, educators and child care professionals together to share best educational practices and creative play ideas for our youngest citizens.
  • Ambassador of our Mission: A board representative or school/organization leader helps to share our programs and initiatives with their schools and community.  As a member you will assist with planning and execution of our conferences, networking dinner, parent speaker programs and Screenbreak/Let’s Play initiatives. 


  • Early Childhood Newsletter: All families in Member schools receive two issues a year, which are published in the fall and the spring.  The newsletter contains a calendar of Member events, as well as articles written by local and national experts on topics such as practical parenting ideas, book reviews, and health information.
  • Parenting seminars and speakers: All Members receive notices for all programs held throughout the year to publicize in their newsletters, websites and social media.
  • Let’s Play! All Members receive notices of seasonal community play days, encouraging families to take a break from screens and engage in open-ended, imaginative play both in nature and at home.  Opportunities for creative and guided play represent best practice methods in early childhood education. Every child enrolled in a member school receives a copy of a ScreenBreak Guide (distributed in March).
  • Transition to Kindergarten Meeting: Parents of incoming kindergarten students and families who are new to District 36 learn about the District’s history and philosophy, as well as what to expect during the kindergarten year.


  • Networking Breakfast: The principal or director of member schools and organizations is invited to this breakfast in September. This is an excellent opportunity for new leaders in our Member schools and partner organizations to meet their colleagues at the beginning of the school year.
  • Networking Dinner: All teachers, aides, and administrators in member schools and organizations are invited to the dinner in October (fee involved).  Educators at member schools have first priority in reservations.
  • Early Childhood Directors Roundtables: Early Childhood directors of member schools convene quarterly to talk with one another about matters of common concern, tour member schools, and discuss different early childhood philosophies.
  • Biannual Enrichment Speaker Series (ongoing): Early Childhood Directors and teachers of member schools learn about a variety of topics, such as what is new in children’s literature and integrating the challenging child.
  • Preschool-Kindergarten Summit (February): Members are granted priority registration for this annual event to learn about the latest research relevant to young children in the preschool and kindergarten years and to facilitate positive transitions from preschool to kindergarten (fee involved).
  • Annual Inspiring Nature Play Conference (May): Members are invited to join this unique professional development event to gain new ideas for nature play for young children at hands-on activity stations and workshops, a deepened awareness of research demonstrating how nature play facilitates children’s development, and a new network of local professionals working together to promote nature play in formal and informal education settings (fee involved).
  • Special Needs Roundtable: Member directors and teachers are invited to participate in seminars and/or live webinars devoted to teaching children with special needs and working with their parents. 
  • Informal Networking: The Alliance for Early Childhood facilitates opportunities for informal networking throughout the year at Alliance board meetings, committee meetings, and other events.


  • Website: Priority listing of registration information, summer programs, and publication of member schools and organization’s events (which are open to a wider audience) on the Alliance’s website,, including a link to the websites (no fee).
  • Newsletters and ScreenBreak Guide: Opportunity to promote events that are open to the public and registration information in the newsletter calendar (no fee) or advertise your school or organization in our publications (fee involved).       


School Representative

All member schools have a representative on The Board of Directors, serving as a communication liaison between The Alliance and their school/organization.

  • Member schools and organizations provide a non-staff member to represent them. 
  • Dues are $90 per person.



  • Member schools appoint their director, principal, or a staff member to serve as the primary contact.
  • Board dues are not required. 

All School Representatives carry-out the following responsibilities:

  • Attend Board of Directors meetings
  • Relay shared information about upcoming Alliance events, speakers and conferences.
  • Ensure that Alliance events are shared in school communication
  • Promptly distribute Alliance publications
  • Attend and promote Alliance events throughout the year
  • Support fundraising efforts
  • Encouraged to partake in optional leadership roles.

Non-school organizations have the option for their rep. to serve on the Board of Directors or the Advisory Board.


Financial Support

All member schools make a financial commitment to The Alliance by choosing one of the options outlined below:

Participation in The Spring Annual Fund


Annual Membership Fee

  • Member schools submit an electronic  mailing list (names and addresses) by November 1st for the spring Annual Fund mailing
  • Member participation in the Annual Fund is crucial to the financial health of the organization. School Representatives write personalized, individual notes on Annual Fund letters
  • It is required that the total amount raised by the families in each Member school be greater than $9.00 per staff and child. Any shortfall will be covered by the member school.



  • Member schools pay an annual membership fee based on the number of children and staff in their school/organization, $9.00 per child and staff member are due by October 1st.
  • Not required to participate in the Annual Fund
  • Not required to provide mailing lists, but may elect to do so (decisions are made on a school-by-school basis)
  • Schools may choose to promote the Annual Fund and the option of Teacher Tributes. 

Please note: all member schools and organizations will be asked to donate each spring.  There are additional ways for members to support The Alliance for Early Childhood financially, including:

  • Becoming an Annual Gold or Silver Sponsor
  • Advertising in Early Childhood newsletter or ScreenBreak Guide
  • Sharing profits from an event held during ScreenBreak
  • Underwriting Alliance programming
  • Making Teacher Tributes to honor individual members of its faculty or staff

Members will adhere to all the benefits and requirements of membership, in order to maintain their status as a Member in good standing.



Updated October 2018