List of Montessori Preschools in San Francisco

Note: I wrote this article during Spring 2015 so some info (particularly the tuition) may already be outdated. However, it gives you a good baseline to start with. 

I remember reading an article about how stressful getting into New York City preschools were. Not only does it cost a million dollars to attend but parents had to sign up for the waitlist the moment they saw a light blue line on their pregnancy test. “This is ridiculous,” I thought!

Then I moved to San Francisco … was thrust into the Preschool Olympics… and that article became my life …. and those parents didn’t seem so silly anymore…

Photo Credit: Keep Calm-o-matic


As I researched various preschools for my son, I thought I’d share my insights so other parents don’t have to waste endless hours on Yelp or school tours. Do not be a victim like me.

First up, is a list of Montessori schools in San Francisco. Founded by an Italian scientist, Dr. Maria Montessori believed in fostering a children’s desire to learn. Her teaching philosophy focuses on freedom, independence, and exploration during a critical development period in a child’s life (the toddler years).

Some people swear by the Montessori method as it teaches children to be life-long learners, to constantly explore & discover new ways of doing things, and to excel in one’s own talents and interests. Reported famous Montessori alumni include Jeff Bezos, Sergey Brin, Larry Page, Jackie O, Julia Child, Yo-Yo Ma, and Queen Bey.

Montessori has become so popular that a slew of “fake” Montessori’s have began to pop-up (I guess imitation is the sincerest form of flattery). To prevent from getting played, ask if teachers are certified or if the school is a member of an association like the following:

  • American Montessori Society (AMS)
  • Association Montessori Internationale (AMI)
  • Montessori Accreditation Council for Teacher Education (MACTE)
  • The North American Montessori Teachers Association (NAMTA)

Here are more tips on what to look out for in a Montessori.

If this all interests you, see below for a list of Montessori preschools in San Francisco. May the odds be ever in your favor.

*Some pricing is pulled from the school’s website and therefore, may not be update. I tried to verify as much as I can so please don’t shoot the messenger!*

Big City Montessori School (Bayview)
240 Industrial Street
San Francisco, CA 94124
(415) 648-5777

  • Head teachers are AMI certified and Assistant Teachers have the CA state required ECE units.
  • Tuition is $24,680 for a full time, 12-month school year (5 days/week, 7am-6pm).
  • Accepts children as young as 2.5-years-old
  • Family business with virtually no turnover

Leport Montessori (Civic Center)
50 Fell Street
San Francisco, CA 94102
415-992-8388

  • Head teachers are AMI trained
  • Tuition: $2,290/month for full-time (5 days/week, 7am-6pm).
  • Accepts children as young as 3-months-old
  • Well-established business with schools in Orange County, LA, San Diego, and Emeryville
  • Seems to have a lot of construction nearby and not a lot of outdoor space

Belvedere Montessori Pre-School (Cole Valley)
155 Belvedere Street
San Francisco, CA 94117
(415) 564-3173

  • No certification or membership
  • Tuition: $1,150/month (5 days/week, 9am-3pm). Aftercare between 7:30am-9am and 3pm-6pm is available for $6/hour.
  • Accepts children as young as 2 years and 9 months
  • Large Family Child Care Home
  • Has approx. 18 kids in the school

Glen Park Montessori (Glen Park)o
647 Chenery Street
San Francisco, CA 94131
(415) 585-7701

  • Lead Teachers are Montessori-certified (AMS and The Montessori Teacher Education Center which is MACTE accredited).
  • Tuition: $1,695/month for full-time (5 days/week, 8am-6pm).
  • The ideal age for enrollment is 2 years 9 months old. However they look more at maturity and school readiness more so than age. Kids must be potty-trained prior to enrollment
  • Parents are required to volunteer 20 hours per school year or pay $350 per child.
  • They have Family Meet-ups where you can get to know other students and their families

Warm House Montessori School (Mission)
819 Florida Street
San Francisco, CA 94110
(415) 401-7790

  • Lic # 384001407
  • Called but the voicemail is full so I couldn’t leave a message

San Francisco Public Montessori (Pacific Heights)
2340 Jackson Street
San Francisco, CA 94115
(415) 749-3544

  • Member of AMS. In addition, all of the elementary teachers hold California teaching credentials and are either Montessori certified or are currently enrolled in a Montessori training program
  • Starts with Pre-k at 3-years-old. However, being enrolled in the Pre-K does not guarantee a spot in the elementary school as that is a completely separate process
  • Part of the SFUSD so tuition is free!
  • School Accountability Report Card

Montessori Children’s Center (Parkmerced)
80 Juan Bautista Circle
San Francisco, CA 94132
(415) 333-4410

  • A member of AMI. Head teacher is Montessori certified and all other staff have an ECE certificate.
  • Accepts children as young as 2-years-old.
  • Tuition is approx. $1,825/month for full time (5 days/week, 8am-6pm).

Busy Bees Montessori (Parkside)
1420 Taraval St
San Francisco, CA 94116
415-260-2240

  • Accepts children as young as 3-years-old
  • Tuition is $800/month for a part-time (5 days/week, 8:30am-1pm). 3 days ($500/month) and 2 days ($350/month) a week enrollment are also available. They do not offer full-time enrollment

Rainbow Montessori (Parkside)
2358 24th Ave
San Francisco, CA 94116
(415) 661-9100

  • Accepts children as young as 2.9-years-old

Bambini Montessori Preschool (Richmond)
2042 Clement St.
San Francisco, CA 94121
(415) 668-8828

  • Member of the AMS
  • Accepts children as young as 2.5-years-old
  • Tuition: $1,420/month for full-time (5 days/week, 7:30am-6pm).

Montessori Children’s House of the West Coast (Richmond)
25 Lake Street
San Francisco, CA 94118
415.922.9235

  • Is a member of the NAMTA and AMS. Most teachers have BA degrees and are AMI/AMS certified
  • Children must be 3 or older and potty-trained
  • Tuition: $1,665/month for 3-year-olds and $1,800/month for 4-5 year olds for full-time (5 days/week, 8am-5pm).

Creative Montessori Preschool (Sunset)
3101 Vicente Street
San Francisco, CA 94116
(415) 661-2828

  • Member of the AMS
  • Accepts children as young as 2.5-years-old
  • Tuition: $1,350/month for full-time (5 days/week, 7:30am-6pm).

Little Wonder Montessori (Sunset)
1663 32nd Avenue
San Francisco, CA 94122
(415) 819-5546

  • Teachers have some Montessori training
  • Accepts children as young as 18-months-old
  • Tuition: $1,875/month for full time (5 days/week, 8am-5:30pm).
  • Low student-teacher ratio (usually 4:1) and potty-training is included in the tuition

San Francisco Montessori Academy (Sunset)
1566 32nd Ave
San Francisco, CA 94122
(415) 759-5710

  • According to their Yelp page, they are “licensed and trained in the Montessori method of education.”
  • Accepts children as young as 2-years-old (starting Fall 2015).
  • Tuition: $375/week for full-time (5 days/week, 8am-5:30pm).
  • 2013 and 2014’s Bay Area Parent’s Best Montessori in San Francisco
  • Potty-training included in the tuition!

Montessori House of Children (Western Addition)
1187 Franklin Street
San Francisco, CA 94109
(415) 441-7691

  • Teachers are AMI/AMS certified
  • Accepts children as young as 2-years-old
  • Tuition: $1,465/month for full time (5 days/week, 7:30am-6pm).
  • Been in business for over 35 years!

Montessori School of the Bay Area-San Francisco (Western Addition)
1550 Eddy Street
San Francisco, CA 94115
(415) 292-7970

  • Claim to be certified by AMS but not listed on the AMS website
  • Accepts children as young as 3-months-old
  • Tuition: $1,850/month for full-time (5 days/week, 7:30am-6pm)

Maria Montessori of the Golden Gate (West Portal)
62 Lenox Way
San Francisco, CA 94127
(415) 731-8188

  • Member of AMI
  • Accepts children as young as 2.5-years-old
  • Tuition: $1,750/month for full time (5 days/week, 7:30am-6pm)
  • Came in 3rd place in 2014’s Bay Area Parent’s Best Montessori in San Francisco award

Dr. Maria Montessori | Photo Credit: AMS

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Whew! There you have it! If you see an inaccurate info, please let me know and I’d be happy to update it. Hope this helps!

Keep checking back as I’ll be providing more details on other types of preschools (Reggio-Emilia, language immersion, etc.).

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