Early Childhood Program

The SJS Early Childhood Program is an excellent opportunity for children aged three to five to develop the skills necessary to be life-long learners.  We provide an atmosphere that is engaging and encourages children's overall development. Our curriculum is age appropriate and fosters growth in all curriculum areas, including Religion, Math, Language Arts, Technology, Social Studies, Science, Physical Education, and Science.


Our program is distinguished by the SJS approach to early childhood education. The Early Childhood curriculum supports the development of the whole child, which includes opportunities for cognitive, social-emotional, physical, language, and spiritual development. Our day includes prayer, creativity and exploration, independent and group activities, all of which nurture a sense of respect for themselves and others.

Early Childhood Class Sessions
Days of the Week*
Tuition Rates
Pre-School 3-Year-Old Morning Sessions
3 Days (M-W)
Pre-School 3-Year-Old Morning Sessions
4 Days (M-Th)
Pre-School 3-Year-Old Morning Sessions
5 Days (M-F)
Pre-Kindergarten 4-Year-Old Mornings
4 Days (M-Th)
Pre-Kindergarten 4-Year-Old Mornings
5 Days
PS3 & PK 4-Year-Old Full Day Sessions
3 Days (M-W)
PS3 & PK 4-Year-Old Full Day Sessions
4 Days (M-Th)
PS3 & PK 4-Year-Old Full Day Sessions
5 Days (M-F)

*Days of the week may be adjusted with the principal approval.

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Frequently Asked Questions


Does the tuition cover all of the supplies, or will I be asked to send in school


In each of the Early Childhood Program (PS3 and PK4) classes, you will be asked to send in some basic supplies such as glue sticks, tissues, Clorox wipes, water colors, crayons, and markers. The list of supplies varies depending on the class in which you are enrolled.

Is the Preschool Accredited?

Yes. The Early Childhood Program, along with K-8th grade program, is accredited by the Diocese of Joliet and the State of Illinois.

Is the Preschool licensed by the state of Illinois?

No. Early Childhood Programs that are accredited by the Diocese of Joliet and State of Illinois that operate for less than 6.5 hours per day are not required to be licensed by the state. However, the highest of standards that are maintained for continued accreditation. SJS meets or exceeds the standards required by the state.

How does the Full Day 3 Year Old Program differ from the 4 Year Old Program?

There is a variety of differences in the expectations and curriculum of the 3 and 4 year olds. The 4 year old program is a preparation for our full day Kindergarten focused on Reading and Math skills and will implement additional resources, enrichment, and remediation as needed for the child. Additional Technology class time (Provided in the SJS Tech Lab) along with additional Music, Movement, and Art time will be extended. The 3 Year Old Program will provide for a longer break, lunch and nap time for our children. The Technology time for the students will be integrated in the classroom, additional time for play based learning along with cooperative groupings will be the focus of the afternoon time in the classroom. The 3 year olds will have additional time in Movement and Creative Art expression.

What programs are offered at SJS?

Morning Preschool 3 Year Old Program

Instructional Hours: 8:30 am-11:00 am

5 Day (Monday-Friday) Tuition Rate: $2800

4 Day (Monday-Thursday) Tuition Rate: $2500

3 day (Monday-Wednesday) Tuition Rate: $2200

Full Day Pre-School 3 Year Old Program:

Instructional Hours: 8:30-12pm and 2:00-2:45pm

(Lunch/Break time from 12:00pm and Rest Time from 1:00pm-2pm)

5 Day (Monday- Friday) Tuition Rate: $5350

4 Day (Monday – Thursday) Tuition Rate: $5050

3 Day (Monday – Wednesday) Tuition Rate: $4800

Morning Pre-Kindergarten 4 Year Old Program:

Instructional Hours: 8:30 am-11:00 am

5 Day (Monday-Friday) Tuition Rate: $2800

4 Day (Tuesday-Friday) Tuition Rate: $2500

For an additional fee, there is an EARLY ARRIVAL before school care program from 7am-8:20am. For more information about the before school care program, contact Mrs. Baxter at (815) 838-8173.

Full Day Pre-Kindergarten 4 Year Old Program:

Instructional Full Day Hours: 8:30-11:30am and 2:00-2:50pm

(Lunch/Break time from 11:30-12:10pm and Rest Time from 12:30-1:30pm)

5 Day (Monday- Friday) Tuition Rate: $5350

4 Day (Monday- Friday) Tuition Rate: $5050

3 Day (Monday- Wednesday) Tuition Rate: $4800

Calendar Year for the Early Childhood Program

The Early Childhood Program is similar to the school day program for grades K-8. The children being school in late August prior to Labor Day and complete the school year just after Memorial Day weekend. Parents and students are invited to the Early Childhood Meet and Greet prior to the first day of school for our PS3 and PK4 students.

Extended Care Program

For additional fees, our before and after school care program will be available to our 3 and 4 year old students. Our morning program from 7am-8:30am cost ranges between $5-$7.50 depending on start time. The after school care program is available from 2:45 p.m. – 6:00 p.m. The costs range from $6.50- $12.50 depending on the pick-up time. For information about the before and after school program, please contact Mrs. Baxter at (815)838-8173.

Enrollment Details: Students enrolling for 5 days have first priority for available openings. Depending on current enrollment, we may be flexible about the specific days for 3 day and 4 day morning schedules. Early Childhood offerings are subject enrollment. Session and timing may be altered, added or canceled based on enrollment.

Tuition Program: The SJS Early Childhood Program is independent of the parish school investment and must be a self-sustaining program. For that reason, multi-child discounts and rates are not listed. For families with two or more siblings enrolled at SJS, financial aid and scholarships may be available upon request. Please contact the school office for more information.


Are there additional requirements for volunteer hours or obligations?

Yes. Each family enrolled in the PS3 or PK4 Program is required to fulfill one fundraising obligation to the SJS Annual Fund. A tax deductible donation of $300 is required by November 1st.

How old does my child need to be to attend Preschool at SJS? What is the

birthday cut off for preschool?

To enroll in the 3 year old program, children must be 3 years old by September 1st of 2020.

To enroll in the 4 year old program, children must be 4 years old on September 1st of 2020.

Do children have to be potty trained?

All children entering the preschool program must be completely toilet trained.

Daily Life

How many children are in each class? What is the student: teacher ratio?

Anticipated Ratio for 2020-2021 School Year

PS 3 year old: 18 Children with 2 SJS Staff Members

PK 4 Year old: 20 Children with 2 SJS Staff Members

*Ratio based on anticipated enrollment and may be increased with increased enrollment.

May I have a tour of the facility?

Yes, the principal is happy to schedule a tour of the Early Childhood Program for you. You are welcome to bring your child with you when you visit the school. Please fill out the form below to request a tour.

Can I come and observe the classrooms?

Yes, you will need to contact the school at (815) 838-8173 to schedule a time to observe a class. Available observation times will from 9am-10:30am and based on availability. Mrs. Babich, our Early Childhood teacher will be happy to work with you to find a time that will work with your schedule. Please let Mrs. Babich know if you plan to bring your child with you during your scheduled observation time, so that the teachers will have extra materials on hand in case your child would like to participate. Private tours are always available.

Do the children in Preschool or Pre-Kindergarten students wear uniforms?

The children in the PS3 and PK4 classes DO NOT wear uniforms.

Do you provide snack or lunch for the children?

Morning snacks are provided for all students for a small cost. In the PS3 and PK4 Full Day Program, these students bring lunch from home.

What if my child has food allergies?

The teachers and staff of SJS are very aware of the serious nature of many food allergies. If your child has food allergies, you will be asked to fill out an Allergy Action Plan for him/her. If your child must have an Epi-pen or Benadryl on hand in case of allergic reaction, you will be asked to provide 2 Epi-pens to keep on campus. (1 in the classroom and 1 in the school office) A SJS Medical Form detailing dosing instructions and signed by a physician must be on file for each medication.

What kind of curriculum is used in the Early Childhood Program? What types of

things/activities do they do?

Our main goal is to create a safe and nurturing environment where young children can learn and explore. We believe that a basic understanding of the beauty of God’s creation and of His unending love and forgiveness for all people helps to set young children on a positive path for friendships, behavior, and knowledge of their own self-worth.

Weekly activities in the preschool classrooms include arts and crafts, technology, music, movement, alphabet and number activities, science and sensory activities, dramatic play, block play, pre-reading activities, writing activities, and manipulative toys such as puzzles and peg boards. In both the 3 and 4 year old programs, there is significant emphasis placed on social skills and language skills.

The Early Childhood Program at SJS follows the curriculum guidelines developed by the Diocese of Joliet. Classroom teachers use the teaching methods and activities that they have found to be most effective with their age group as they address each of the curriculum standards set forth by the diocese. The Diocesan Curriculum for Early Childhood Programs includes activities and skills for each developmental area in which children learn and grow. These areas include spiritual, social, emotional, cognitive, language and physical motor skills (Please refer to the Early Childhood Morning Program Handbook and the Curriculum Guide for more information).

What about religion? Do the children attend Mass?

The children in both the 3 year old and 4 year old classes use a religion curriculum which includes many activities and stories designed to help young children appreciate the beauty and wonder of God’s Creation and His love for all living beings. The students in the Early Childhood Program do not attend mass weekly. The children participate in other prayer services during Advent and Lent and pray each day in the classroom. Special trips throughout the year are made to the church to provide the opportunity to grow in love and knowledge of God through our Catholic tradition.

Do the full-day students take a nap?

Yes. The children in the Full-Day Pre-K classes have rest time scheduled each day for approximately one hour. The children are asked to rest quietly on their mats, but they are not required to sleep.