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Children's School

Application Process for the 2016-17 School Year

As the laboratory school for Mills College School of Education, the Children's School strives to create balanced classroom populations that represent the greater community. To that end, we gather a pool of applicants each year, rather than keeping a waiting list or admitting students based upon dates of application. We value diversity and ask, in our applications, for you to provide information that reflects the unique nature of your child and family. Mills College Children's School (MCCS) does not discriminate on the basis of race, religion, creed, color, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin or physical challenge.

In our admissions process, we give priority to the children of Mills College faculty, staff, and students, which typically make up about 20% of the school's enrollment. The siblings of currently-enrolled children make up another 10%, with the remainder coming from throughout the East Bay.

We appreciate the opportunity to give you information about our philosophy, curriculum, and mission. We recognize that the decisions you make for your child’s education can have important consequences for your entire family and we hope you will find this process both informative and helpful.

Here’s how to apply:

1. Take a tour. 

The best way to learn about our wonderful laboratory school is to come for a tour! Preschool tours are taking place now on Tuesdays and Fridays through February 16. Space is limited, so please REGISTER ONLINE

We have concluded group tours of our K-5 program for the 2016-17 admissions season, but we continue to accept applications all year round and are happy to offer private tours upon request. Please contact Whitney for more information. 

2. Complete an application.

Review the information packet provided at one of our admissions events or download the appropriate application below if you prefer to fill it out online. Return your application to Mills College Children’s School (MCCS) along with a non-refundable $65 fee ($100 for two siblings applying in the same year) via email or mail to the addresses at the bottom of the page. 

Elementary School Application 

  • Rolling admissions as space allows. 

Early Childhood Application

  • Priority deadline for Infant/Toddler & Preschool applicants is February 19, 2016.*

*If you are applying for Financial Aid, please complete the SSS application and submit all required forms by the application deadlines listed above. 

3. Elementary only: Submit a recommendation form 

Ask your child's teacher to complete the applicable recommendation form for the grade your child will be entering. 

Kindergarten recommendation

Grade 1-5 recommendation

These forms are confidential and should be sent by the teacher directly to our school at the mailing address below. Please give your child's teacher enough time so that the recommendation can reach us by the deadline above. Most teachers also appreciate a stamped addressed envelope, as well. If your teacher prefers, s/he can email or fax the recommendation, but please ask that a hard copy is dropped in the mail, too.

4. Elementary only: Come for a visit! 

When all the above steps have been completed, families will be contacted to arrange for their children to visit the school in February, 2016. Kinder applicants will visit on Saturday, February 6, 2016, for one hour between 9 am and 2 pm, so please reserve that date on your calendar. Applicants for grades 1-5 may be scheduled to visit on a school day.


For Elementary School applicants: 

  • MCCS mails decision letters on Thursday, March 10, 2016. Email confirmation will be sent the following day at 12 noon.
  • Signed acceptance of the offer of enrollment must be received with a non-refundable $1,000 deposit by 9:00 am on Friday, March 18. This deposit applies toward your child’s tuition and holds their spot for the 2016-17 school year.
  • If an Elementary applicant has a sibling who is also applying to our Early Childhood program, we will notify the family about placements for all children on this timeline.

For Infant/Toddler and Preschool applicants: 

  • MCCS mails decision letters on Friday, March 18, 2016. 
  • Signed acceptance of the offer of enrollment must be received with a non-refundable $1,000 deposit by 9:00 am on Monday, March 28. This deposit applies toward your child’s tuition and holds their spot for the 2016-17 school year.

Any subsequent openings will be filled from the pool of remaining applicants on the basis of maintaining balanced and diverse classroom populations. 


Contact our Admissions Director:

Whitney Walker
Mills College Children's School
5000 MacArthur Boulevard
Oakland, CA 94613
510.430.2053 ph
510.430.3223 fax


About MCCS

What is a Lab School?

Infant/Toddler Program and Preschool

Elementary School

Application Process

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Admissions Calendar


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Contact Information

P: 510.430.2118
F: 510.430.3223

Last Updated: 2/3/16