Casa Cerrito PreschoolCommunity Subscriber
El Cerrito, CA
To see Department of Social Services records on this facility, click on its DSS Facility License # below.
We LOVE Casa Cerrito, the city-run preschool. They give an option to change your schedule over the summer, and tell them you plan to have your child back full-time in the fall. Last year we reduced preschool to half-time for a few weeks and then went back up in the fall. They do say there's no guarantee you'll get your full-time spot back if another kiddo comes full-time in the summer and wants to stay, but I think they try to make it work, and they're more affordable than most other preschools around. The down side is that their hours are 9am-5pm, no extended care available, so if you can't make those dropoff/pickup times work with your work schedule it can be pretty challenging.
I wouldn't move him from a preschool that he likes until you absolutely have to - why commit to raising your preschool expenses until it's necessary? My daughter went to Casa so I am familiar with the dealio there. If you like it and want to stay, talk to other families about providing care for your boy before or after school - like you drop him off at another Casa family's house at 8, and pick him up from someone's house at 6? You'd pay them of course, but it still might work out better for everyone than the stress of finding a new preschool. A lot of grandparents do the Casa dropoff/pickups, so they might be interested in some extra cash.
Another thought on your #2 is to look for jobs with school districts, which I believe may have 6.5-7 hour days for some positions. Good luck!
Archived Q&A and Reviews
I couldn't find any reviews regarding Casa Cerrito Preschool operated by City of El Cerrito. I'm interested to check it out for my almost 4 years old daughter. I'm looking for an affordable non-co-op preschool with flexible schedule, that can give a kindergarten readiness activities for her (not pure play-based). Does anybody has experiences with them? Thanks. Albany mom
Our son is now in Casa and was with Teetor tots (also from the city of El Cerrito). We started in Teetor tots when we first moved from out of state for the very reasons you are checking it out. My son graduated to Casa last year and I have never been more happy with any other place like I am with these two. The teachers at both places are awesome and I have never once worried about the care my son receives in my absence. I like the mix of academic, art, cooking, sports, gardening and play based projects the kids get to do. The teachers and the city staff (Sarah) are very understanding of family circumstances when you need more care or less care in terms of time for any given day. I am not sure all schools do that. If I am sick or when I have lots to errands run and if my son is not enrolled for that day I can do drop ins. All I need to is call them and let them know. I always felt they go over and beyond considering what we pay. I am amazed at how a city run project has such nice staff! Casa and Teetor do not have the bells and whistles in terms of a fancy building, but they do state of art preschool activities and more importantly the staff there are some of the nicest and kindest people I met in El Cerrito. A very happy Casa and Teetor mom.