Preschoolers gather for storytime at New York Preschool. Photo courtesy of the school
Preschoolers gather for storytime at New York Preschool. Photo courtesy of the school

Popular Upper West Side Preschools (and How to Know Which One Is Best for You)

Gearing up for the great preschool hunt? In neighborhoods like the Upper West Side where preschool spots are in high demand, some preschools may require you to send your application in September the year before your child will enroll, after which you'll be invited to visit and confirm your interest in the school (some have early admissions and wait lists!), with final acceptance letters going out in February or March. If that sounds unsettlingly like college admissions to you, you're not alone.

But never fear. The Upper West Side is home to a lot of great preschools, and your odds of finding a comfortable fit for your family are excellent. We've compiled our best Preschool Admissions Tips as well as 10 Questions to Ask During a Preschool Tour, and don't forget that our Preschools Directory is an excellent resource. And to start your preschool search on the right foot, we've highlighted some of our favorite preschools in the Upper West Side and broken them down into categories to help you decide which may be best for your family. Good luck!

A quick overview of the preschool categories below: A traditional preschool follows the NYC public school calendar and runs from September to June, with a curriculum that reflects that school's unique educational mission; a year-round school is similar but is in session over the summer months as well. Co-op preschools require parents to commit some of their own time to school administration, management, and/or activities. Reggio Emilia and Montessori preschools are both focused on child-directed learning, but you may find you prefer teachers who consider themselves "guides" en route to making the child independent (the Montessori approach), or you may be drawn to Reggio's emphasis on communication and documentation. Home-based preschools are run out of a home-like environment, rather than a school, and tend to have small classes and an intimate approach. If your family is interested in religious or dual language preschool instruction, we've also listed a selection of those. Remember that some schools fit multiple categories (co-op and Reggio, for example, like Family Annex).

All My Children - Manhattan
112 Ridge St .
New York , NY 10002

All My Children - UWS
101 W 85th St.
New York, NY 10024

All My Children - Forest Hills
108-22 69 Ave.
Forrest Hills, NY 11375

All My Children - Rego Park
97-30 Queens Blvd
Rego Park, NY 11374

All My Children - Brooklyn
317 Rogers Ave
Brooklyn, NY 11225

NY Preschool 22nd Street
38 East 22nd Street
New York, NY 10010

NY Preschool 68th Street
168 Amsterdam Avenue
New York, NY 10023

NY Preschool 94th Street
345 East 94th Street
New York, NY 10128

NY Preschool Brooklyn Heights
182 Henry Street
Brooklyn, NY 11201

NY Preschool Long Island City
4545 Center Blvd.
Long Island City, NY 11109

New York Preschool Park Slope
125 5th Avenue
Brooklyn, NY 11217

River School
75 West End Avenue
New York, NY 10023

Family Annex
560 West 113th Street
New York, NY 10025

Purple Circle
251 West 100th Street
New York, NY 10025

River Park Nursery School
711 Amsterdam Ave at 94th Street
New York, NY

West Side YMCA Co-op Nursery School
5 West 63rd Street, 6th Floor
New York, NY 10023

Milestones UWS Preschool
319 West 74th Street
New York, NY 10023

HudsonWay Immersion School
525 W 52nd St.
New York, NY 10019

La Escuelita
225 West 99th Street
New York, NY 10025

Greenwich Village
7 W 10th Street
New York, NY 10011

Upper West Side
159 W 82nd Street
New York, NY 10022

Beit Rabban Day School
15 W 86th Street
New York, NY 100234

The Day School at Christ & Saint Stephen's
122 West 69th Street
New York, NY 10023

School of the Blessed Sacrament
147 West 70th Street
New York, NY 10023

Stephen Wise Free Synagogue Early Childhood Center
30 West 68th Street
New York, NY 10023

Columbus Preschool
606 Columbus Avenue
New York, NY 10024

Metropolitan Montessori School
325 West 85th Street
New York, NY 10024

Morningside Montessori School
251 West 100th Street, 6th Floor
New York, NY 10025

ACT at the Cathedral
1047 Amsterdam Ave.
New York, NY 10025

Bank Street School for Children
610 West 112th Street
New York, NY 10025

Brownstone School
128 West 80th Street
New York, NY 10024

Montclare Children's School
747 Amsterdam Ave.
New York, NY 10025

Park Children's Day School
4 West 76th St
New York, NY 10023
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