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lestrog, Other/Just Looking in San Francisco, CA

Preschools in San Francisco

Asked by lestrog, San Francisco, CA Thu Oct 11, 2012

My family is moving to San Francisco (from Europe) after Christmas and we have a son (3 years old) and a daughter (5 months old). I’m looking for information about preschools there for him (my daughter is still too young):
- Which ones are the best preschools in San Francisco? We pretend to live close to the school so we need the school to be in a safe area too.
- Is it possible to join the school in January or will it be a nightmare because we missed the official period for asking for a place?
- We’ll be in SF for about two years and I wonder if the preschool curricula there is similar to European one so that my son will adapt correctly to the European school when we are back. At what age do the children learn to write and read there?
Thanks a lot for your answers.

Help the community by answering this question:


For the best-known preschools, e.g. Pacific Primary, Holy Family Day Home - yes, it is too late to apply. In general, most openings at preschools (both the well known and not so well known) are in August/September because that is when the oldest kids leave for kindergarten, making space for younger kids. I agree that is is best to pick a preschool near where you live - driving is a total pain here and walking or cycling are often better options. Without knowing where you plan to live or what you consider a safe area, I can't suggest specific preschools. But I would encourage you to google and start the online application process for as many schools as possible right now. Bright Horizons/Marin Day School has many centers and you might look at them. Also, you might want to join the Golden Gate Mothers Group ($75) for more detailed information.

My son is only 2.5 so I can't really answer your question about the age at which kids learn to read and write here. Regarding curriculum, if you have a preference for the type of philosophy/curriculum you prefer -e.g. Montessori vs. play-based/Reggio Emilia vs. Waldorf - then that will help you narrow down your search here.

If you can't find a preschool you might choose to hire a nanny if you can afford it. Rates are about $16/hr for one child and $22 for two children. Many families share a nanny with another family.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Oct 11, 2012
And, regarding the philosophy of the preschool. I don't have any preference. I know Montessori philosophy but I don't know about Reggio Emilia or Waldorf. I think play-based is a good approach for my son although I'd like creativity, music and art to be in the curriculum some how.
Thanks a lot again.
Flag Mon Oct 15, 2012
Thanks mizshan for all this information.
In fact, we still don't know what area we'd like to live in. I was first getting information about the preschools and was planning to start looking for a place to live near the preschool(s) I'm interested in later.
Regarding the nanny, I prefer my son to attend a preschool because that's more usual where we live at his age. In fact, he already started here at school (in Spain they start at schools at age 3 and stay at the same one up to 12 years old) in September. So, I want him to be used to it and learn things (are nannies there like teachers? or do they only take care of the children but don't teach them letters, numbers and so on?).
I'll follow your advice and join Golden Gate Mothers Group. It seems also a good way to socialize once I'm living there and spend the whole day with my little sister.
Flag Mon Oct 15, 2012

Here are links for San Francisco school information you may find useful,

SF Unified School District Map:

Online School Ratings:

Oggi Kashi - 415.690.3792 direct
Broker Associate, Paragon Real Estate Group CA DRE 01844627
All data from sources deemed reliable but subject to errors and omissions, and not warranted.
Web Reference:
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Oct 11, 2012
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