About the Weekday School
The Riverside Church Weekday School is a progressive, play-based, independent early childhood school on the Upper West Side of New York City, serving families with children ages two through five with nursery, pre-K, and kindergarten classes. Our diverse community fosters sharing, understanding, and respect while focusing on the social, emotional, cognitive, and physical development of each child. We celebrate each child’s unique gifts and are dedicated to teaching children to become confident learners, passionate explorers, and discerning risk-takers.
Additionally, The Weekday School is committed to the physical development of our children and their exploration of imagination and mastery through physical well-being. To fulfill this ambition, the Weekday School employs three expansive outdoor and three spacious indoor play areas:
- A first floor playground features a large play structure and giant cubes.
- A garden courtyard includes a large play structure and planters where each class tends a garden.
- The rainy-day room on the 6th floor is equipped with a large play structure and has scooters and carts for riding.
- The rooftop playground is equipped with bicycles and tricycles for riding, a large dome climber and hollow blocks for building.
- The Gymnasium located on the A level below the church is a full-size gym where equipped with mats for tumbling, jump ropes, balls and a running track.
- The Solarium on the 8th floor is used for building tunnels and building with blocks.
Our commitment to diversity extends across faiths and traditions. We provide our children a culturally rich experience as they learn about both religious and secular holidays and traditions through songs and story-telling. These are part of the daily class activities and are also shared at communal gatherings we call Weekday Sings throughout the year and at our winter and end of year celebrations. Parents and family members are invited to join at these communal events.
Our children are taught by a talented and dedicated staff of childhood education specialists whose work is supported and furthered by an active Parent’s Association. All of our Lead teachers hold Masters Degrees in Early Childhood Education. All of our Assistant teachers hold Bachelors Degrees in education. Our teaching teams consist of either two Co-Lead teachers or a Lead and Assistant teacher.
Families and friends are welcomed into the classrooms to share traditions, experiences, and talents. Through participation in the Parents’ Association, families provide leadership and assistance with school social and fundraising events.
The school resides on sixth and seventh floors of the MLK Wing of the Riverside Church. These floors were specifically designed as early childhood learning environments and feature bright, spacious classrooms with large, arching windows overlooking the Hudson River and the Upper West Side. The sun-filled art studio looks out onto the river and inspires the beautiful expression of our young artists.
Support for the Ongoing School Process
The Weekday School seeks to prepare children for ongoing public and independent schools. We offer a variety of resources to assist families as they explore ongoing school options. During the year, the school sponsors evening events at which parents can learn about ongoing schools.
Some of the co-ed and single sex independent schools our children have transitioned to are:
- The Cathedral School of St. John the Divine
- Bank Street School for Children
- Ethical Culture Fieldston School
- The Riverdale Country School
- The Dalton School
- Trinity School
- The School at Columbia
- Manhattan Country School
- The Spence School (all girls)
- The Brearley School (all girls)
- The Chapin School (all girls)
- The Allen-Stevenson School (all boys)
- St. David’s School (all boys)
- The Browning School (all boys)
Admissions and Financial Assistance
The Weekday School is a non-profit, non-sectarian school with a non-discriminatory admissions policy. We seek to balance culture, race and gender within our age-based classes. It is our goal to provide high-quality, affordable education. Financial assistance is available to children from qualifying families.
Children ages 2–5 are eligible for September admission. The application process includes a visit to the school and play date.
The Weekday School is a member of the Independent Schools Admissions Association of Greater New York (ISAAGNY) and abides by its admissions policies and dates.