Nurseries & Preschools
As one very much-loved owner of a pre-school once said, “The role of pre-school is to allow abundant social outlet, to stimulate the imagination, to bake, create, problem solve, perform, to laugh, to form friendships, to plant, to build wigwams, to run, to climb and to be free. Cayman society places quite some pressure and elevated expectations on the academic performance of such young people, and in turn on the institutions entrusted to care for/educate them. Children develop in greatly varying time frames, and we must trust the system and trust that our children will learn each skill of physical, intellectual, linguistic, emotional and social readiness in their own good time”.
If your child’s preschool covers such things as the correct pencil grip and the phonetic sound of the alphabet, then this is a bonus and will definitely help your child transition to reading and writing, but if they don’t, then your child’s primary school will teach them these things and it should not be cause for concern. Most of the primary and high schools which have Kindergarten and Pre-K classes are listed under the Primary Schools section. Below are the majority of Cayman’s preschools.
Improving Standards in Preschools
In 2013, the Ministry of Education’s Early Childhood Care and Education Unit began conducting inspections of all Early Childhood Care and Education (ECCE) Centres. Their goal was to introduce new national standards and a national curriculum, for young pre-school children, ultimately shifting the schooling culture from one of child minding to one of child learning, so that children were better prepared for their entry into primary school at the age of four. The new standards not only included health and safety regulations but also how the staff were managed, how they interacted with the children and ensured that the children were being properly stimulated and taught age appropriate activities. Teachers were also taught how to identify children who might have learning difficulties and then how to better help the child so that they will be better ready for primary school.
This process is now ongoing and every preschool is inspected prior to their licence being renewed. If the school is not up to the required standard, then a three months’ period of improvement is given and, as was the case in 2015, if the school did not improve then it was closed down.
The Government has chosen to focus on preschool education in an effort to address the problems in the public school system with reading, writing and behavioural issues. Therefore, to ensure that all children have access to Early Years learning, there is funding available for families on lower incomes. In order to qualify, children must be three years old as of 1st September and meet specified financial criteria. For more information and to see how to apply, see the Department of Education Services (DES) website on www.education.gov.ky.
Here is a quick overview of all the preschools in Grand Cayman. Much much more information can be found in the listings below, but to give you a quick idea of costs and hours that the preschools are open see here:
Bright Start Learning Centre
Hours: Monday-Friday 7.30am-6pm. Playroom open Saturdays 9am-6pm
Monthly Fees: Full-day CI$660, half-day CI$475
Cayman Casa Montessori
Monthly Fees: Nest Program (4 months-16/18 months) CI$1200, Toddler Half-Day CI$900 (7.30am-12pm), Toddler Full-Day CI$1,075 (7.30am-3.30pm), Preschool Casa Half-Day CI$875 (7.30am-12.15pm), Preschool Casa Full-Day CI$1,000 (7.30am-3.30pm). Aftercare available from 3.30pm-4pm for CI$15 per day.
Discovery Kids Preschool
Fees: Part-time CI$400, full-time CI$550
First Baptist Christian School/WEE Care Centre
School hours: 7.30am-5.30pm (full-time), 7.30am-12.30pm (part-time)
Monthly Fees: Full-time: CI$730; Part-time (5 half-days): CI$590; Three Full Days: CI$590
Launch Pad Enrichment Centre
Monthly Fees: Full-time CI$500, half-days CI$350. After-school homework help and creative activities are available from 3pm-6.30pm for other school children – Monthly CI$200. Pick-up service from Prospect Primary, Savannah Primary and Bodden Town Primary schools for an additional CI$20-40 per month. Siblings discounts available.
Little Trotters Farm & Nursery School
Monthly Fees: Half-day CI$825 (7.30am-12.30pm), full-day CI$995
Montessori Del Sol
Monthly Fees: Toddler Programme (18 months–3 years): Mornings (7.45am–11.45pm) CI$925, Toddler Extended Morning (7.45am-12.30pm) CI$995, Casa Programme (3–6 years): Montessori Mornings (7.45am–12pm) CI$885, Lunch Bunch (7.45am-1.30pm) CI$940, Full-Day (7.45am–3.30pm) CI$975. After Care (3.30pm-4.30pm) CI$15 per da. One time only application fee of CI$200. Annual registration and supplies fee CI$250.
Montessori School of Cayman
Hours: 7.30am-12.30pm (Half Days); 7.30am-3.30pm (Full Days)
Monthly Fees: Three Half Days – CI$600 per month; Three Full Days – CI$700 per month; Four Half Days – CI$750 per month; Four Full Days – CI$850 per month; Five Half Days – CI$850 per month; Five Full Days -CI $925 per month.
St. George’s Anglican Preschool
Hours: 7.30am-5.30pm Monday-Friday
Fees: Monthly CI$450; Fortnightly CI$250; Weekly CI$125
St. Ignatius Catholic School/Early Years Centre
Fees: Annual: CI$8,905, Per Term: CI$3,118 (3 terms) and Monthly: CI$974 (10 months)
Shining Stars Childhood Care & Education Centre
Hours: Monday-Friday 7am-6pm
Monthly Fees: CI$650 (full-time), CI$495 (part-time), CI$725 (nursery/ages 6-12 mths)
Sister Janice Early Learning Centre
Monthly Fees: CI$475 includes breakfast, lunch and afternoon snack (five Full-Days).
Sprogs Nursery and Eco-School
Monthly Fees: CI$520-CI$1,195 (depending on the number of days per week and age of the child)
Starfish Village Toddler Programme
Hours: 8am-11.30am or 8am-3pm
Monthly Fees: 3 mornings per week CI$590, 3 Full-Days per week CI$690, 5 mornings per week CI$850, 5 Full-Days per week CI$950.
The Achievement Center
Monthly Fees: CI$550 for full-time, including breakfast and lunch.
Tiny Tots Academy
Hours: 7am -6pm
Monthly Fees: 5 Full-Days (ages 6 weeks to 18 months) CI$725 per month, 5 Full-Days (19 months to 4 years) CI$675 per month. Part-time rates vary from CI$200 to CI$575 per month depending on age and the number of days attended per week. Fees include breakfast, a hot lunch and an afternoon snack.
Treasure Garden Preschool
Hours: 7.30 am-5.30pm
Monthly Fees: Full-day rate (7.30am–5.30pm) CI$850, Half-day rate (7.30am–12.30pm or 12.30pm-5.30pm) CI$700
Toddler Programme Monthly Fees: (18 months-3 years) Montessori Mornings (7.30am-11.45am) CI$935 and Lunch Bunch (7.30am-1pm) CI$995
Casa Programme Monthly Fees: (3-5 years) Montessori Mornings (7.30am-12.15pm) CI$900, Lunch Bunch (7.30am-1pm) CI$950, Full-Day (7.30am-3.30 pm) CI$995.