What ages do you admit?

Mission Kids is licensed to serve children from age 2 to those entering first grade.

How many students do you have each day?

Our typical daily enrollment is 34 children across three rooms. Our typical daily enrollment is 46 children across our two sites: 30 at South Van Ness and 16 at Rolph.

What is your adult to child ratio?

Our ratio is 1:5 or better at all times.

What are the hours of operation?

Mission Kids operates year-round. The school year starts in late August and ends in early August the following year. The school is open Monday through Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. Pick up is between 2:30 and 3:00. Children attend two, three, or four days a week. We observe traditional holidays and school breaks.

What’s your curriculum like?

Our curriculum is child-led and draws on philosophies of play-based and emergent learning. Adults provide the raw materials for inspiration and enough structure to enable children’s minds to flourish. Choices are always available for children not interested in the main group activity. We believe the most important thing for children to be learning at this age is peaceful socialization and positive communication, and we incorporate this belief into everything we do. A typical day includes a healthy dose of free play, activities that draw on gross and fine motor skills, healthy snacks, exciting outings in the neighborhood, group reading, rest time and more play! We are community based, and draw upon our surroundings for inspiration and learning opportunities. Music, language, yoga, art, cooking and the study of nature are all concepts introduced to children within the Mission Kids curriculum.

What kind of classroom management do you use?

Mission Kids promotes peaceful conflict resolution. We’re committed to empowering children to resolve conflict through peace-based socialization and communication. Children learn to identify and share feelings, practice listening skills, and collaboratively problem-solve under the guidance of trained teachers and parents.

Do you have a foreign language component?

Yes. Mission Kids is a bilingual program. In keeping with the Mission district’s heritage, Spanish language and Latino culture are integrated into daily classroom activities (e.g., books, songs, cultural celebrations, field trips). In addition, many other languages are spoken at Mission Kids; we have/had children enrolled who are native speakers in Mandarin, Japanese, Tagalog, French, German, Hebrew, Korean, Portuguese, Arabic, Swahili, Polish, Czech and Urdu. We welcome and celebrate all language and cultures!

What are the family shift requirements?

Families work one four-hour shift per week.

Shifts are 8:30-12:30 or 11:30-3:30.

Can you pay additional tuition in lieu of working classroom shifts?

Yes, the buyout fee is $4,800 per year. Families opting for a buyout are still required to spend a minimum amount of time (averaging 2 hours per month per family) volunteering in the classroom. This requirement could be satisfied by substituting for regular parent-teachers, coming in to lead a special activity, chaperoning a field trip, etc. A 50% buyout is available for $2,400 per year for families who would like to work some shifts, but can’t work a shift each week.

What additional work is required as a Mission Kids member?

In addition to family shift requirement above, each family:

  • Takes on a co-op job (for example, laundry, maintenance, scheduling, admissions, etc.)
  • Attends monthly member meetings
  • Volunteers for 6 hours a year per day of attendance (e.g., 18 hours for a student who attends 3 days per week), which includes participation in maintenance days, field trips, and special assignments that arise during the year
  • Participates in annual fundraising efforts and events
  • Provides food and beverages for one member meeting per year
  • Signs up for 1-2 substitute parent teaching shifts per month

Do you provide a snack?

Yes, Mission Kids serves a warm, hearty, healthy morning meal that consists of a whole grain, fruit, vegetable, and protein. Our snacks are seasonal, locally grown and organic. All of our snacks are purchased from local farmer’s markets or Rainbow Grocery Cooperative. Children bring their own lunch.

What is quiet time like at MK?

After lunch and group reading, quiet time begins. The curtains are drawn and children spend time quietly on their mats while relaxing music plays. Books and writing journals are available for everyone. After about 45 minutes, anyone who is not asleep is invited to pack up their nap mats and play outside. Children who fall asleep wake up when they are ready or are gently woken depending on parental preference and individual needs.

What kind of training do you offer parents?

Each monthly meeting consists of one hour of school business and one hour of parent-education. Mission Kids also provides Saturday parent/teacher training workshops throughout the school year. An orientation training is held before the beginning of each Fall session, followed by subsequent training during the year. Parent education is strongly emphasized and a priority at Mission Kids.

What is your policy on vaccinations?

Effective July 1, 2016, California law requires all children be immunized to attend preschools, elementary schools and secondary schools.

To enroll at Mission Kids, your child must have required proof of vaccinations. More information about the California School Immunization Law can be found here. Information about specific age requirements for immunizations can be found here.

In addition, effective September 1, 2016, all adult staff and volunteers are required to be immunized. This includes anyone working a Mission Kids family workshift. More information about this immunization requirement for adults can be found here.

How much is tuition?

We make tuition affordable through a number of public and private funding opportunities. Typically, at least 80% of our families receive some form of tuition reduction. The amount of tuition reduction is based on family need and the age of the child, therefore, tuition amounts are shown as a range rather than a specific number:

2020-21 Tuition Scale

  • 2 Days: $0 – $6,195
  • 3 Days: $0 – $9,293
  • 4 Days: $0 – $12,390

You may contact admissions@missionkidsco-op.org for more information about reduced tuition opportunities.

What does being a “Early Learning Scholarship” certified preschool mean?

Being an Early Learning Scholarship (ELS) certified preschool means that we have a high quality of curriculum and routine at MK. Family eligibility for ELS funding is determined by San Francisco Office of Early Care and Education. Families receiving ELS funding must comply with all ELS requirements, including participating in developmental screenings and attendance requirements.

Why must I fill out an income form?

Because Mission Kids receives public funds to serve low- and moderate-income families, we ask that you provide your family size and the income range. You may be asked to provide income verification (pay stubs or tax returns) once your family is enrolled at Mission Kids. All specific income information is kept confidential to the Admissions Committee and Board of Mission Kids.

When do you admit new students and how are enrollment decisions made?

Most families are admitted in spring to start at the beginning of the school year in late August. Occasionally we have spots open up at other times of the year. Mission Kids bases enrollment decisions on a number of factors including child’s age and gender and our desire for diversity of ethnicity, language, ability, financial level and family make up. We also consider the family’s schedule and flexibility and the family’s overall ability to contribute time, resources and expertise to the co-op community.