History and Mission

History and Mission

In 1973, Mrs. Mary Ellen Christy approached St. Chrysostom’s Church Rector Bob Howells and Senior Warden Bill Leff about starting a parish-based pre-school for parish and neighborhood families. With a modest contribution from the Vestry (the Church's Board) and a community member’s generous donation, St. Chrysostom’s secured appropriate licenses from the City of Chicago Department of Buildings and the State of Illinois Department of Children and Family Services.

In September 1974, the Day School, led by Mrs. Christy as its Founding Headmistress, opened its doors with three staff members and 27 students enrolled in a half-day program. Since that time, the Day School has operated as an unincorporated parish day school that is wholly owned by the Church; under canon law, the Day School is governed by the Vestry and the Rector. The Day School’s advisory board is a committee of the Vestry of St. Chrysostom’s reporting to the Wardens and the Vestry. Advisory board members serve at the pleasure of the Vestry. The Rector retains the ultimate authority for the Day School including the responsibility for hiring Mrs. Christy’s successor.

As of the 2016-2017 school year, the Day School has 155 students enrolled in six programs for children aged from 22 months to 5 years serviced by a team of 20 teachers, assistants and administrators.

As one of the only Episcopal preschools in all of Chicagoland, the Day School has earned a reputation for:

> providing an extraordinary level of teacher attention to students
> forming the whole child
> nurturing genuine friendships among parents and families
> offering service to the wider community

Over the 43 years of Mrs. Christy’s leadership, the Day School has made a difference in the lives of more than 6,100 children enrolled from 1974 through 2017. St. Chrysostom's Day School continues to evolve to meet the needs of the community including the recent addition of extended day programs for morning fours, junior kindergarten and preschool classes.

A member of The National Association of Episcopal Schools and licensed by the City of Chicago and the State of Illinois, St. Chrysostom's Day School welcomes children of all religious and racial backgrounds.

Our Values

Cultural and developmental diversity is a value and is celebrated in the curriculum.

We are committed to the community we serve and offer educational programs to parents, as well as to children.

We provide superior early childhood education with our developmentally appropriate programs for children ages 2-5.

We celebrate each child's mind, body and spirit.

We are dedicated to meeting the developmental needs of our students in an exciting and nurturing learning environment.

Every child is recognized, valued, and supported by their teachers and peers as they each build a sense of self.

 Our Teachers

St. Chrysostom's Day School teachers are highly experienced. Most have Master’s Degrees in Early Childhood Education or Child Development. Our teachers create a safe and caring environment that supports learning and incorporates creativity and curiosity.

Each program uses thematic units to support an integrated approach to learning, encompassing basic disciplines such as literacy, math readiness, science, music, art, and motor skills.