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Frequently Asked Questions

The Admissions Process

What is an Open House? Should I come to one?

Yes. At the Bank Street School for Children, attendance at an Open House is an important step in our application process. This evening event lasts approximately two hours and provides a general overview of the school with a presentation from the members of the Administration as well as tour of the facility with a parent/student team.

Do I wait until I have all the parts of the application (including a Financial Aid form if applicable) before I send it in?

No. Once we receive your application, we create an admissions folder for your child. As we receive additional material for the application (i.e. school transcript, confidential school report, etc.) we will add it to the folder until the folder is complete and ready to be reviewed by the Admissions Committee.

What does a December 1st deadline mean?

We make every attempt to process every application received before December 1st. We schedule visits through the end of January in order to comply with the ISAAGNY Notification and Reply dates. If we run out of interview slots, we will keep your application on file and will notify you of this by either phone or email. We will return your application fee if we do not process your application within the first round of admissions according to the ISAAGNY schedule.

Does Bank Street offer early notification to families?

Yes. Bank Street offers families who have siblings currently at Bank Street the option of Early Notification. Admissions focuses on making sure this is the best learning environment for our applicants. As much as we seek to build a family school, there may be times when Bank Street is not the most appropriate placement for every child within a family. If, after careful review, Bank Street does not appear to be an optimal fit, the Early Notification Plan provides enough time for parents to pursue other options. For the most part, Early Notification decisions are either an acceptance or a denial for that year.

Do you enroll an equal number of boys and girls?

As a coed school, we make every effort to balance our classes with an equal number of boys and girls.

Do I need to submit an application fee?

Yes. The application fee of $60.00, which we expect you to enclose when you send the application (or will be charged to your credit card if you apply online), is a processing fee and is non-refundable.

What does it mean when you say the “4/5s”?

Bank Street refers to their grades by the ages of the students in that grade. For example, the Pre-Kindergarten class, the 4/5s, is made up of students whose ages range from 4 to 5 years old. All students must be 4 by September 1st, while some will be turning 5 in the fall. Except in individually specific circumstances, children do not stay in the same grade level for more than one year.

Is there a birthday cutoff for applicants?

Yes. We have adhered to the September 1st cutoff for children. For example, a child applying to the 4/5s Program (Pre-Kindergarten) must be 4 years old by September 1st of the entry year.

Do you require letters of recommendation?

No. Our Admissions requirements do not include letters of recommendation. Sometimes families feel that a particular person who knows them and their child very well can offer another perspective that would be helpful. If we receive letters of recommendation, we will include them in the applicant’s file.

School for Children Logistics:

How are the different Ages, Grades, and Divisions broken down?

  • Lower School: nursery (3/4s) through kindergarten (5/6s)
  • Middle School: first grade (6/7s) through fourth grade (9/10s)
  • Upper School: fifth grade (10/11s) through eighth grade (13/14s)

What is the student to teacher ratio?

In addition to the head teachers, classroom staff includes specialists, assistant teachers, and student teachers. The student to teacher ratio in the Lower and Middle School is 6:1. In the Upper School, it is 8:1.

Do Bank Street teachers hold Master’s Degrees?

Bank Street teachers are the School’s greatest resource. In addition to holding master’s degrees, many of the teachers are also adjunct faculty members at the Bank Street College of Education Graduate School.

What are the school hours?

3/4s half-day (nursery)
Monday-Thursday 8:30-11:45am
Friday dismissal at 1:00pm

3/4s full-day (nursery) -- 8/9s (third grade)
Monday-Thursday 8:30am – 3:00pm
Friday dismissal at 1:00pm 

9/10s-13/14s (fourth through eighth grade)
Monday – Friday 8:30am – 3:15pm

Do you have an early morning drop-off?

Yes. Bank Street has a program for working parents from 7:45-8:25am for children in the 4/5s through the 9/10s.

Do you have an after school programs?

Yes. Bank Street offers rich, nurturing and varied after school and extended day programs, which are used by approximately 75% of our families at some point througout the school year. Drop-in service is available daily as well. The cost of the program depends on the specific activity as well as the number of times per week the child is enrolled. The program is divided into two cycles: September through February and February through June, as well as vacation camp during school vacations.

After School Program:

  • Monday – Thursday: 3:10-4:30pm
  • Friday: 1:00-2:30pm

Extended Day Program:

  • Monday – Thursday: 4:30-6:00pm
  • Friday: 2:30-6:00pm

Where is Bank Street located?

The Bank Street School for Children is located on 112th St. between Broadway and Riverside Dr. on the Upper West Side of Manhattan.

Does Bank Street have a children’s library?

Bank Street’s library contains approximately 70,000 volumes. A full-time librarian works with all School for Children students, ages three to fourteen. Graduates of the School for Children have a lifetime membership to the library.

Are there team sports for students interested in participating?


Yes. Upper School students may choose to participate on teams in four sports as well as running club:

  • Soccer in the fall for the 10/11s-13/14s
  • Volleyball in the fall for the 11/12s-13/14s
  • Basketball in the winter for 11/12s-13/14s
  • Softball in the spring for the 10/11s-13/14s
  • Running Club in the fall and spring for 10/11s-13/14s

How is technology implemented in the School for Children?

Technology is seen as a tool to support learning and growth, and to help make developmentally appropriate and meaningful connections between teaching and learning and the outside world. The 4/5s might capture video on a Flipcam while on a neighborhood walk while the 10/11s might interact with students in China by posting photos of their experiences with day-to-day activities.  Students in the Upper School collaborate with their peers online via secure classroom websites to complete projects involving technology. Document cameras, iPads, eno boards, laptops, keyboarding programs, podcasting, Garage Band, and concepts of digital citizenship are standard elements found in many Bank Street classrooms.

How are kids assessed?

Communication about children’s academic, social, and emotional growth and development is presented in two written reports and two parent/teacher conferences each year.

How does High School placement work at Bank Street?

The process of High School placement begins in the spring of 7th Grade and continues throughout the fall of 8th Grade.  The Director of High School Placement in collaboration with the Upper School faculty works with parents and students to discuss and formulate a list of appropriate schools for each student.

Do you have a Summer Camp?

Yes we do. The Bank Street Summer Camp offers extensive programs from mid-June to September for children between the ages of 4 and 13. Regular programs run between 8:30am to 3:00pm, including Spanish Immersion, Science, Theater, Sports and Travel. Swimming is integral to each program. Enrichment and Extended Day programs are available until 6:00pm.

Community Involvement

What is the relationship between the Bank Street College of Education and the School for Children?

The School for Children is a working model of the College’s progressive approach to learning and teaching. We share not only a common purpose and mission, but space and facilities as well.  At times, the faculty of the College and the School for Children collaborate on grants to study and better understand children’s learning and share in professional development opportunities.  Moreover, some members of the School for Children faculty teach in the Graduate School and graduate students work in the School for Children as assistant teachers and student teachers. Most of the School for Children faculty have master's degrees from the Bank Street College of Education

Where do the families who apply to the School for Children come from?

We attract families from Manhattan, Brooklyn, the Bronx, Queens, Westchester County and New Jersey.  Although a majority of families live on the Upper West Side, we have an increasing number of families traveling from other parts of the city and surrounding areas.

How can parents get involved in the community?

We welcome parent involvement in the school.  The Parents' Association is an active and dynamic group of parents who organize many events throughout the school year including the Auction, Fall Fair, New Parents Welcome Party, etc. In addition, the school supports parent affinity groups as a way to provide a venue to identify ways to be better represented in the culture of the school and to support and develop a deeper sense of belonging. Parents are able to better get to know the other children in their child’s class as well as the parents of those children through class pot lucks, attending field trips, and volunteering to attend events in their child’s class. Parents can volunteer to support the Admissions office by signing up to be a Tour Guide during the Open Houses or be a Buddy Parent to new families. Parents can also volunteer to be class parents or division parents.