11 Feb How Much Does Preschool Cost in Seattle? Our Market Analysis
To help us determine a fair tuition price we asked our board fellows Marcus and Alex (both MBA students at UW’s Foster School of Business – placed on the Tiny Trees board for 1 year as part of the board fellowship program) to find the average price of preschool in Seattle. They collected tuition information from 598 preschools and child care centers that serve children 3 – 5 years old in Seattle. All of the information is from public sources (webpages, etc.) and excluded preschools that do not publish their tuition price. They found that:
The average tuition for half day preschool is $800 a month ($8,000 / year). This is for preschool that is less than 4 hours a day and is 5 days a week.
The average tuition for full day preschool is $1,200 a month ($12,000 / year). This is for preschool that is 6 to 8 hours a day and is 5 days a week.
Many of the schools surveyed only offered a 10 month, Sept – June program. To find the annual cost we multiplied the monthly tuition price by 10.
Hands down the most affordable programs were at cooperative preschools with a range of $180 – $300 a month for 3 half days a week (a majority of the co-op preschools we looked at were part day, 1-3 days a week). This is an excellent choice for parents who have more time than money.
For parents looking for quality full day preschool with before and after care (7 am – 6 pm) prices started at an unbelievable $995 a month at Launch (formerly the Community Day School Association) and went up from there with a number of schools in the $20,000+ a year range. Many of the preschools with the highest tuition were associated with independent schools that also offered a K-5 or K-8 education.
For Tiny Trees we used this analysis to help set our tuition price and financial assistance policy. A big shout out to Marcus and Alex who put hundreds of hours into this project and to the University of Washington’s Foster School of Business for partnering with us on the board fellows program. Thank you!
 Many of the preschools that do not publish their tuition prices are larger, for profit enterprises. Our hunch is a market analysis in a fully transparent market would result in a higher average price.