These are schools with which other Better Halves have had good experiences, but this list is not a guarantee. 

6 months to 5 years


The Children's Learning Center (CLC) is located on the beautiful grounds of Morningside Gardens in Morningside Heights.  CLC is an arts-oriented, play-based nursery school for children aged 6 months-5 years. At CLC, we value play, hands on exploration of materials, and children's social and emotional learning. We see children as creative and competent problem solvers, and celebrate the imaginative spark within each child.

Applications are accepted until February 1st.

Tuition varies; $50 application fee

2 to 5 years


Columbia Greenhouse is an independent, not-for-profit, and non-sectarian part-time early childhood school. Their student body reflects the diversity of the University community and of the neighborhood.

Application deadline is December 1st.

Tuition and application fees; financial aid is available

17 months to 4.5 years


The Family Annex is a parent co-op that offers full-time and part-time enrollment for child care. The Reggio Emilia approach is used to encourage creative thinking for children and encourages both teachers and children to be researchers. The children are engaged in discovery through the use of materials, discussions and possibilities which the teachers explore with the children.

There is no application deadline, but enrollment is for 11 months, September - July.

Tuition; financial aid is available

6 weeks to 5 years


The Lamont-Doherty Child Development Center, run by Bright Horizons Family Solutions, offers full-time, part-time, and drop-in care for infants, toddlers and preschool children at the Lamont-Doherty Observatory. The center is located on the border of New York and New Jersey.

There is no application deadline; students can enroll at any point.

Modestly subsidized for employees; partial tuition scholarships available for employees and students of Lamont-Doherty

2 to 6 years


The Medical Center Nursery School aims to provide a secure, nurturing, developmentally appropriate educational setting for children in the following communities: Columbia University; New York Presbyterian Hospital; the New York State Psychiatric Institute; and northern Manhattan, specifically the Washington Heights and Inwood neighborhoods.

Applications are accepted in the beginning of September for the following year.

Tuition; application fee

2 to 5 years


Red Balloon provides a safe, creative, and nurturing environment where very young children can learn by making their own choices and exploring through hands on activities and through play. The center serves the Morningside Heights and Harlem communities.

Tuition and participation/activity fees

Nursery: 3 months to 2 years 8 months; Preschool: 2 years 9 months to 4 years 8 months


Originally a parent coop nursery, this preschool program encourages parents to play an important role in the school experience.  Tompkin's Hall strives to integrate each child's individual development with the experience of belonging to a group.

Applications are due before December 31 for the preschool, and before January 31 for the nursery, for enrollment the following year.

Tuition, application fees, nonrefundable deposit upon meeting participation requirements. Financial aid is available

3 months to 6 years


Twin Parks Montessori Schools (Park West, Riverside, and Central Park) are committed to building and fostering a community of life-long learners, using proven Montessori methodology.  The schools provide infant, toddler, and early childhood education and child care services at three different locations.

Registration/application deadline is September 1.

Tuition fees vary; $50 application fee

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