CDS is a warm community woven together with families from a range of socioeconomic backgrounds, nationalities, cultures, races, faiths, sexual orientations, and gender identities. It’s a community where people look out for each other, families find partners to help bring up their children, and everyone can feel safe, seen, and known. We are open to connecting with others, which leads to a sense of belonging and trust. Students learn to take this spirit of openness out into the world.
Children’s Day School families have made a significant financial commitment to the school and for an independent school education, because they know that CDS provides:
- Strong academics
- An enriched program with art, music, drama, and physical education
- An unparalleled environmental education program anchored by our unique working farm and organic garden
- A school culture where it is a safe place to be yourself, where students master social competencies that serve them well in high school and in adult life, and where parents are viewed as true partners in the important responsibility of educating children
At CDS, we are committed to making our school accessible and affordable to families from a broad range of economic circumstances, and we are a leader in socioeconomic diversity among San Francisco independent elementary schools. We devote more than 19% of our operating budget to sliding scale tuition (for 2021–2022 almost $3.6 million), an unprecedented financial commitment. Twenty-six percent of our enrolled students are paying sliding scale tuition.
Our sliding scale tuition is strictly need-based and recognizes that each family’s financial situation is unique. While every family is expected to pay some portion of the tuition and to support the community to the extent that individual family circumstances permit, we do not expect tuition to be the same for everyone.
Our sliding scale tuition application process is separate from, but completed simultaneously with, our admission process, so that families who have applied for sliding scale tuition are notified of their tuition amount at the same time as the admission decision, allowing them to make informed choices.
We realize that an independent school education at CDS is a significant financial decision, and we know that a CDS education impacts our students in a significant way each and every day.