Columbus Pre-School


Columbus Pre-School is proud to have such a close-knit group of families to call its community. Together with parents, our preschool students learn the value of a social impact. With the help of our Parents’ Association, families are provided a wealth of opportunities to engage outside of school hours in events and service initiatives.

Community Engagement

Social Impact

As a local, family-built community school, Columbus Pre-School feels extraordinarily passionate about helping the Upper West Side neighborhood thrive. We partner with several local organizations and organize tangible, meaningful events that connect our preschool students to the world around them.

Community Happenings

Family Engagement

Parents’ Nights Out

We begin each year with a Cocktail Night for parents to get to know each other, and throughout the year, we have Mix & Mingle events for families to explore the school after hours and check out the various works in the classrooms, and simply take some time to connect.

Art Show

We celebrate all the students’ hard work at the end of the year with a schoolwide art show. The classrooms turn into art galleries, and teachers display individual and collaborative art from throughout the year. Visitors are able to bid on the artwork to add to their personal collections, and proceeds are donated to a charity.

Family Picnic

We take advantage of being right beside the best park in the world, sharing afternoons with families in Central Park, having pizza parties, enjoying playgrounds, face painters, and bubbles. This is one of our favorite ways to get together, so you’ll find Columbus Pre-School families at monthly playground meet-ups and the annual end of year party.

Mystery Reader / Classroom Visits

Our open door policy allows for parents to engage in their children’s school experience in many ways. Mystery readers are always a big hit, as are class visits for cooking/baking projects, enjoying cultural or family traditions, playing musical instruments…

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…teaching about grown-up jobs like firefighting or dentistry, or simply just joining in the rhythm of our students’ school days.

Community Service

Holiday Meal Support Drive

For the over 1,300+ holiday meals donated by Goddard Riverside Community Program each Thanksgiving and December Holiday season, Columbus Pre-School contributes student-made napkin rings to hold holiday cutlery and provides homemade cookies to share with our neighbors. 

Pajama Program

As a supporter for over a decade, Columbus Pre-School annually hosts a school-wide Pajama Party in support of Pajama Program, New York Chapter. Each year, students enjoy a pajama party and storytime, and simultaneously learn the comfort of cozy PJS and loved ones to read with.

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To make sure service is tangible, the event coincides with a pajama and book drive to benefit those families who reside in local shelters. Annually, we donate hundreds of items to help those in need.


We join forces with our favorite neighborhood cleanup crew to spend a few weekends a year cleaning up trash from the blocks of our community. Students love the responsibility of being members of #litterbugpatrol, taking care of the neighborhood we love so much.

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One Block coincides with a schoolwide fun run, 1 Block 4 One Block, and funds raised for the run are donated back to One Block to continue their important mission.

Parents Association

a strong home-school partnership

Our PA serves as the welcoming committee for Columbus Pre-School families. Often parents enter Columbus as first-time toddler parents, eager to connect with others, make friends, and complement their children’s school experience.

From Afternoons in the Park to the Halloween Parade, to Parents’ Nights Out, Coffee Mornings and Cocktail Parties, our PA makes sure that our community has the chance to engage as much as they’d like. Along with our students, parents often leave Columbus with lifelong friends.


What Our Community is Saying

Columbus Testimonials

"Finding the right preschool for your toddler could be a daunting task, but doing so during Covid is overwhelming. Columbus Pre-School made it a no-brainer with their private playground, in-house gymnastics facility, and warm & welcoming staff. I know my son is in the best hands, and is thriving within the play-based, emergent curriculum. I can't wait to see what the next few years bring!"

Jill S

"I have had two children at Columbus, one who has graduated and one who is currently enrolled. The educators are warm and compassionate role models for young children. The curriculum allows for innovation and joy, though also challenges the students. The physical space for play and activity is unmatched in the area. The administrative team is organized and thoughtful, particularly with challenges during the pandemic. Julie Kandall is incredibly experienced and guided us during the application to Kindergarten. We have met some of our closest friends at Columbus pre-school."

Teresa M

"Columbus Pre-School has been a really spectacular place for our children to start their school experience. It has set them up for a lifetime of finding joy in learning. The teachers are wonderful, Julie is incredibly supportive, and truly, we couldn’t be happier."

Helen G

"Columbus Pre-School has been a nurturing & loving environment where my children have developed a deep love of learning and made the most incredible friends. The community has been incredible for our entire family."

Mara K

"Since entering Columbus Pre-School, our 4-year-old has grown into such a confident and curious preschooler. She is coming home excitedly outlining her busy day and all the centers the engage with at school. Seeing how she has learned to be more independent and understand basic concepts (like letter sounds) confirms we made the right choice. The community from the teachers to the administration to parents create a wonderful environment and experience."

Meg B

"My kids always felt loved, safe, and happy at Columbus Pre-School. The teachers are wonderful and their curriculums are creative and relevant. This is a school that really cares about children and understands how they thrive."

Kathleen W