Seeking a Daycare or Preschool in Richmond

Parent Q&A

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  • I could use some advice about affordable preschools and day cares. We would enroll my daughter in August when she will be 20 months. We live in Richmond, but are willing to drive to El Cerrito, Albany, or even Berkeley since that is where I work. One big consideration is cost, as we are expecting twins in the fall and are looking for an affordable option that we could potentially put all 3 kids in down the line. I've checked the archives and am wondering if anyone has any more updated recommendations. Thanks! 

    We love our daycare in El Cerrito, Kid's House. I think Inga will have openings by the fall. She takes up to 6 kids but they have to be walking (like 1y/o+.) The oldest kid there now is 4 and will be turning 5 this summer and starting school in the Fall.

    Try stepping stone in El Cerrito.

    We know a family there who loves it and believe it's affordable.  It's a smaller home base preschool. 

    We really liked Lil Bears in the Richmond Hills and they are very affordable.  We had our son there until he was 3.  They may have moved to a home in El Sobrante (not sure about that) but it's definitely worth checking out.  Email Randy at rbh813 [at]  You can let her know Yvette recommended you!

    My daughter attended Little Inti in El Cerrito (near EC Plaza BART) through 2019. It's a home-based daycare/preschool, very affordable relative to most others. I know that some of our beloved teachers moved on and since COVID started it has just been the owner looking after a small group but she's been in business for many years and I expect she will expand again as things open up. The kids were well-cared for and well fed, went on field trips, had weekly music with an outside teacher and all things considered it was a very relaxed, flexible environment. 

    I truly can't recommend Kunga Daycare more highly.  I'm not sure what the status is for their current openings, but Tseyang is an absolutely wonderful care-provider (we've been with her for 3 years and are looking forward to many more for kiddo #2 who's on the way).  Kunga Daycare is very reasonably priced. 

    Look no further than Semillas Preschool in Richmond!  This preschool is very affordable and it’s a gem of a school. The teachers are so loving and supportive; my under-two year old had no problem adjusting to being there full-time. It is a magical place for a child and feels very much like an extension of family. 

    The school has been in Oakland and they are in the process of relocating to Richmond near the Art Center. They have previously always been fully enrolled and it has not been easy to get a placement. But because they are moving to a new location and are establishing themselves in Richmond, they do have a few openings for fall. You can reach the founder Elisa Pasquini at semillaschool [at]

    I would very highly recommend Semillas preschool in Richmond. My daughter attended 3 years at Semillas when it was in Rockridge (from age 2-5 yrs), but Semillas is now moving to Richmond and we are very sad to lose this gem from our neighborhood. I can't speak more highly of the teachers Elisa and her mother, Paula, who offered the most loving and warm place for our daughter to play and learn - every morning our daughter ran from our arms into the warm embrace of a teacher. The atmosphere is fun, nurturing and play-based and focuses on social emotional learning. You can reach Elisa at: semillaschool [at]  

    Tseyang who was an amazing nanny for our oldest child (now 9) has a home daycare in Richmond on the El Cerrito border called Kunga Tseyang day care.  She is amazing and baby/kid whisperer.  Her in-home day care set up is very sweet too.  I can't recommend her enough.  Good luck with your search!

    This was over 18 years ago, but El Cerrito Preschool co op was really nice for many reasons... I think the 

    price was less also, but what stood out for me was that the parents were involved and volunteered ... 

    we had healthier foods and less toxic cleaning products for that reason.  

    Semillas Childrens School is incredible. Our older son went there (he's 7 now) and still refers to it as his favorite school, and our younger son (3.5) looks forward to going every day. The director Elisa and her mom Paula, who is a lead teacher there, are lifelong early childhood educators and are incredibly, warm, knowledgeable, and expert in terms of what children need at different stages of growth. The learning environment they've created helps kids learn independence, collaboration, kindness, and enables kids to follow and grow their own curiosity. We've been part of the Semillas community for nearly 5 years now and it has been amazing to be part of it for our whole family. Can't say enough positive things about Semillas—and now they're moving to Richmond for this fall (from North Oakland)!

    We loved our daycare provider, Dolkar. She is warm, loving and truly cares about your kiddo. She is in El Cerrito a block or so from El Cerrito Plaza BART station.

    We have our children at Lara's Daycare in Richmond We LOVE Lara's, and have been with her for just under 2 years. At the moment she has a waiting list, but a few children are leaving this summer for preschool, so still might have some openings coming up.

  • Play-based preschools near Point Richmond?

    (8 replies)

    My family is moving from Oakland to Point Richmond this summer. I'm from Oakland and my husband has only lived in Oakland since moving from overseas 6 years ago so we're trying to figure out our new life - it's a big leap for us! One thing I'm scrambling to do is find a preschool for my 3-year-old. We'd like something play-based, with a lot of time outdoors, open to a co-op. I applied at El Cerrito Coop, but they have a waitlist, and Albany Preschool - but that's potentially a long drive if there is traffic. I can't find anything closer on yelp though that fits what we're looking for - any hidden gems that I'm missing?? Thanks. 

    We live in Pt. Richmond and attend East Bay Waldorf School (my son is 3). It's a bit of a drive (20 min), but it's the most beautiful, amazing place and so worth it! Welcome to the area!

    Pine Crest School or Good Earth. Both located on Kensington/El Cerrito border (next door to each other). My kiddo goes to Pine Crest - very play-based, a lot of outdoor space and time spent outdoors.

    This may not be feasible geographically, but Children’s Community Center in north berkeley has openings for 3yo children for the 2019-2020 school year. It is a coop preschool, lots of outdoor time, play based and has been an excellent experience for our family (our 5yo is wrapping up there now). There are families who commute from some distance every year, but whether that works for you may depend on where you work and your schedules etc. 

    Feel free to reach out if you have questions! 

    I'm following this thread because I'm in Richmond and in a similar boat myself with a 2-year old, trying to do some research for preschools in the near future. I don't have experience yet to recommend anything, but just a tip for you that I plan on going through the list on BPN for Richmond area Daycares and Preschools. When I did the search filtered on Richmond, there seemed quite a few options, including home preschools (they are often listed as daycare/preschool, probably because they do take infants as well), private preschools (usually ages 2-5), city run (WCCUSD Early Learning Program, might have a Point Richmond location, as there are several).

    Hi - This might be too far for you, but Hug a Bug is a very sweet, play-based preschool in El Cerrito with tons of outdoor time.  They have a great outdoor play space - and even better, their backyard has a gate that opens onto a big wooded property owned by the Boy Scouts that they're able to use and go for hikes and have playtime back there.  They also take trips to Arlington Park and do little field trips to nearby spots.  They have enrichment classes like yoga, music, and storytelling/puppet shows, and you can sign up kids for once weekly gymnastics where they take them to a gym.  Good luck with your search!

    East Bay Waldorf is where our daughter will be going in the fall. They have 3-day and 5-day preschool programs that start at 2y9months; the "formal" program is 4.5 hours, they also offer aftercare until 5pm. We chose it because we wanted something play-based, slow-paced and warm. We have several different family friends who have spent a year or two in the preschool program and LOVE it (would be happy to point you to one of them for more detailed questions if you want, PM me and I can connect you).

    One caveat is that they don't offer financial aid for preschool, which I know makes the program a real challenge for some families. Kids also have to be fully self-toileting by the time school starts.

    Kensington Nursery School

    Thanks for all your replies! 

    Checking out a few of the options recommended!