South Philly’s first co-op playschool opening at East Passyunk Community Center

When Parks and Recreation took over the former Tolentine Community Center at 1025 Mifflin St., now called the East Passyunk Community Center, changes were promised to make this a more accessible community space.


Now South Philly’s first-ever co-op playschool is bringing more programming to the center, beginning soon after Thanksgiving.

What originally began as a care swap program for a few families with young children has grown to become a larger playgroup that is now expanding to a three-day-a-week cooperative playschool. There are currently 10 families with children between the ages of 2.5 and 5 years-old committed to the program.

This program will emphasize playing with a purpose to encourage exploration and discovery. Lessons taught while playing will include things like conflict resolution, respect, diversity and more.

So what does it cost to enroll in this co-op playschool? It will cost somewhere between $200 and $300 a month, depending on the number families enrolled in the program. Parents of children in the playschool are also required to commit to 1-2 days a month in the classroom, along with assisting with committee work. 

South Philly Playschool will be operating out of a classroom at the East Passyunk Community Center on Mondays, Wednesdays and Thursdays from 8 a.m. to 2:45 p.m.

There’s currently space for 4-7 new families to enroll their children between the ages of 2.5-years-old and 5-years-old to the program. The South Philly Playschool is also looking to fill a permanent teacher position. If you’re interested in enrolling, or applying, contact

10 thoughts on “South Philly’s first co-op playschool opening at East Passyunk Community Center

  • November 19, 2015 at 1:24 pm

    Too expensive for my family but good news.

    Also, the front looks great. They finally took down the gates around it?

    • November 19, 2015 at 7:12 pm

      I walked by yesterday and the fence was still there. I think this picture was taken inside the fence line.

      • November 20, 2015 at 8:07 am

        That’s too bad. We were told they would tear down the gates immediately and make a dog park and a playground. Sounds like the name change to appease EPX egos was on top of the agenda instead.

        • November 23, 2015 at 11:05 am

          Metropioneer, As an employee of parks and recreation I can tell you that there was never any plan for a dog park on the site or a definitive plan to take down the fence. ( most likely neighborhood speculation. There is a plan for a playground; however, these projects take and money. Please Note EPX did not influence the tentative name change.

        • November 23, 2015 at 11:29 am

          Those items were never promised as immediate items.

          Fact 1: It’s a city rec center and will almost certainly have some sort of fence.

          Fact 2: They’ve had control of the center for exactly 3 months. Since any upgrades to the facility have to come out of the advisory council’s budget. They are just starting to plan for capital expenses and fundraising activities.

        • November 23, 2015 at 11:57 am

          Not sure who told you that. We were told they were going to replace it with a three story Wegmans capped with 5 floors of parking for residents. The name, meanwhile, had to be changed because Wegmans demanded that they not retain the name of the organization that had been thrown out. They’re crazy like that. EPX egos, meanwhile, dictated that it have a fence like pretty much every other rec center in the city. That’s their agenda.

    • November 20, 2015 at 8:39 am

      The gates still stand. I believe I took this photo outside of the gates, but with the camera between the slats. Sorry if it’s at all deceiving.

      • November 20, 2015 at 10:23 am

        No need to apologize Taylor. Your picture, like your writing, is excellent. The frustration here is with the EPX lifers who are keeping the neighborhood from changing for the better.

        “Sometimes you eat the bear, and sometimes, well, he eats you.”

        • November 20, 2015 at 4:01 pm

          I have lived on East Passyunk all my life and let me assure you, we have a terrible shortage of bears around here. It’s all clean shaven pretty boys.

  • November 23, 2015 at 1:24 pm

    As one of the moms working on opening this co-op I have been very impressed with the interest John, the Advisory Council, and Parks & Rec have taken in hearing from the community about what is wanted for this center. What I have also noticed is there sure seem to be a lot more people talking about what they want than showing up at the meetings and volunteering time to make it happen. The community center has to raise all of the money to create the programs and build the playground people want, so if it matters to you, come out and lend support. Advisory Council meetings are open to the community and take place the first Wednesday of each month at 7:30. Also, the first big fundraiser that will support these projects is an art auction on December 11. Tickets are $20 (available at the center) and get you hors d’oeuvres, drinks, dessert, and the chance to bid on the art. The Advisory Council has done an amazing job getting all of the food and service for the event donated (by a major Philly restaurateur), so that the entire $20 will go directly to supporting new programs and capital projects. If you want to see change, spread the word about this event!

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