Welcome to St James Preschool


    St. James Preschool is a warm and caring learning place for your young child, featuring:

    • Over Fifty Years Serving the Downingtown Community
    • Caring and Nurturing Environment
    • Traditional Preschool Programs for children 2 1/2 to 5 years
    • Daily Lunch Bunch Extended Day Program
    • Pre-K Plus Academic Enrichment Program
    • Certified Teachers
    • Low Student to Teacher Ratio
    • 5-Day, 3-Day, and 2-Day AM Sessions
    • Active Parent-Teacher Organization
    • Family Fun Events
    • Class Field Trips
    • Fantastic Outdoor Playground!

    About Us

    St. James Preschool has been continuously owned and operated by St. James Episcopal Church since 1965. Over the years, our program has grown and expanded to meet the ever-changing needs of today’s preschoolers in the Downingtown, as well as, Chester Springs, Coatesville, Exton and West Chester areas.

    St. James Preschool is non-denominational and accepts children of all backgrounds. Though we are operated by St. James Episcopal Church, our curriculum does not include religious education. We do, however, offer a prayer of thanksgiving at snack time.

    We have a warm, mature staff consisting of five teachers and five assistants. Our teachers are certified or have over fifteen years of teaching experience. Our private classrooms are well- supervised with a teacher and an assistant in each class. This allows the right teacher-to-student ratio which affords each child individual attention. Our staff is easily accessible and available to address any parent questions or concerns.

    We currently offer programs for children ages eighteen months to five years. Our Toddler Talk and My Time programs are for Moms and their children who are either not old enough or quite ready for a traditional preschool day. They meet once a week for one hour or one hour and fifteen minutes, respectively; and run for ten-week sessions.

    Our preschool program consists of Young Threes, Threes/Fours,  and Pre-K classes. We offer morning sessions two, three or five mornings a week. We offer afternoon sessions three days a week for our Threes/Fours and Pre-K classes.  Our school calendar runs from September to May.

    We are happy to give tours of our Preschool. Please call to set up an appointment.

    Our Philosophy

    We believe that the time before kindergarten is an important opportunity to provide developmental learning experiences for children. Our program provides an environment that encourages social, emotional and intellectual growth. In a warm and gentle atmosphere, we help ease the transition from home to a school environment.

    We encourage your child’s natural curiosity and creative expression through the use of art projects, music and movement, and imaginative play.

    Our “spiraling curriculum” emphasizes the pre-readiness skills needed for kindergarten. St. James lays the foundation of social/life skills, language development, early math, thinking skills and pre-reading beginning in the Young Threes classes. Children learn and explore through self-discovery, teacher directed activities and active involvement.

    We help to cultivate a child’s awareness of self and respect for people and the world around him. We prepare him/her for learning in school through encouragement, cooperative play, sharing, and caring.

    Our ultimate goal is to encourage a strong sense of self in each child.

    Curriculum

    At St. James Preschool, our child-centered curriculum lays the foundation of social/life skills, language development, early math concepts, thinking skills and pre-reading skills. It builds upon concepts learned from previous years so that by Pre-K, children are completing their mastery of ABCs, shapes, colors, and numbers in preparation for kindergarten.

    Children learn and explore through self-discovery, teacher directed activities and active involvement. Daily activities include: Circle Time, Free Play, Art Exploration, Learning Activities or Centers, Story and Puzzle Time, Snack Time and Outdoor Play.

    We help to cultivate a child’s awareness of self and a respect for people and the world around him/her. We prepare children for learning in school through encouragement, cooperative play, sharing and caring.

    We encourage your child’s natural curiosity and creative expression through the use of art projects, music and movement, and imaginative play.

    Please click on the following links for a copy of our general program:

    Please be aware, the program guide for the year is very general, and like the monthly calendars the teachers will be giving out, is always subject to change due to anything and everything! One of the luxuries we have as preschool teachers is to take advantage of all learning opportunities as they happen instead of when they are planned to happen. We hope you will understand our need for flexibility as we strive to meet the social, emotional, and educational needs of your child.

    Our Classes

    Two and a Halfers

    • 2 to 3 year olds
    • must be three by March 31st of the enrolled year
    • 2 day program only

    Young Threes

    • 2 to 3 year olds
    • must be three by January 31st of the enrolled year
    • 2 or 3 morning programs

    Threes/Fours

    • 3 to 4 year olds
    • not attending Kindergarten the following year
    • 2 or 3 morning programs

    Pre-K

    • 4 to 5 year olds
    • will attend Kindergarten the following year
    • 2, 3, or 5 morning programs

    Class Sizes

    • Every class is staffed by a teacher and an assistant
    • Two and a Halfers – 10 students per class
    • Young Threes – 10 students per class
    • Threes/Fours – 10 students per class
    • Pre-K – 12-14 students per class

    Schedule 

    • 2 day AM T-TH 9:00 to 11:30 AM
    • 3 day AM MWF 9:00 to 11:30 AM
    • 5 day AM M-F 9:00 to 11:30 AM (Pre-K only)

    Monthly Tuition and Fees

    Enrollment is limited so that we can keep class sizes low and give individual attention to each child. Applications are offered to our existing St. James families in November and are available to the general public on December 1st. Classes fill on a first come – first served basis. Applications are available in the school office or by visiting our website.

    Registration Fee – $ 65.00 (non-refundable)

    Activity Fee – $25.00 (due in September)

    Tuition Rates 2021/22

    • 2-day program – $190.00
    • 3-day program – $235.00
    • 5-day program – $325.00

    *A 25% discount off the lesser tuition is allowable for more than one child in a family.

    Note: The first tuition payment is due on April 1st. Tuition payments continue to be due the first day of each month Aug. 1 through March 1st.  Tuition payments are non-refundable.