Skip to content

Enroll at NVNS

Thank you for your interest in Napa Valley Nursery School. We are excited about our school, and we think you will be, too. Please read this good general article about co-operative nursery schools. It is important to make sure that the requirements for participation are a good match for your family. The co-op model is not for everyone and asks for participation beyond the standard preschool experience. Please read the requirements below carefully. If you feel that NVNS would be a great place for you and your children, please take a look at the tuition and schedule information.

General NVNS Membership Responsibilities

  • Parent participation in classroom workdays (averages 2-3/month for T/Th, 3-4/month for MWF)
  • Parent participation in E-parent days (on-call to work in classroom), generally 1 per month
  • Fulfill the requirements of a school job
  • Attend monthly parent meetings
  • Participate in one housekeeping Saturday per year
  • Participate in one work shift during end-of-year cleanup
  • Provide snack on a rotating basis (typically 4-6 times per year)
  • Fully participate in school fundraising efforts, such as volunteering on event committees and/or securing donations

Wait List and Enrollment Information

If you are interested in having your child attend NVNS, you can request that they be added to our wait list at any time by sending an email to with the following information:

  • Child’s Name
  • Child’s Birthdate
  • Parent(s) Name(s)
  • Mailing Address
  • Phone Number(s)
  • Email Address
  • Did a member of your child’s immediate family (i.e. sibling, parent, or grandparent) attend NVNS? If so, please indicate who, when, and how they are related.

The date you send your request to NVNS will become your child’s wait list date, and it is one of the key criteria for enrollment offers. There is no cost or obligation for being on our wait list, so if you are seriously considering NVNS we strongly encourage you to add your child to the wait list as early as possible to maximize your chances of getting an enrollment offer when your child is old enough to attend. (Note: Children cannot be added to the wait list until they are born and have an actual birth date – due dates are not acceptable for wait list additions.)

By default, children will automatically remain on the wait list until they are enrolled in (or age out of) our program and wait list families are always welcome to join us for our annual Parent Information Night (which is typically held in January). For obvious reasons, it is very important that we have current contact information for children who are on our wait list, so please let us know if you change your phone number, email address or mailing address after adding your child to our wait list. (Also, if at any point you decide that you are no longer interested in having your child attend NVNS, please let us know so we can remove your child from the wait list – thank you)

Once children become age-eligible for our program, they will be considered for available openings following our precedence criteria.

Age-Eligibility for Enrollment at NVNS:

To enroll in our program for a specific school year, children must be turning 3 by April 2nd of that school year. Our school year generally runs from mid-September through May, and the majority of our openings occur in the Spring when we start working on enrolling the classes for the next school year – and to a lesser degree, throughout the summer if any of our initially enrolled families end up releasing their spots. However, enrolled families sometimes have to withdraw during the school year, and when that happens we fill those spots from our wait list. So, even if a child isn’t offered a spot when we initially enroll the next school year’s classes, there’s always a possibility that an opening will become available during the summer or even during the school year itself.

Enrollment Process and Precedence Criteria for NVNS:

When we have an opening to fill (either during the spring/summer when we are filling classes for the upcoming school year, or at any time as a result of an enrolled family withdrawing) we go to the wait list and offer the spot to the next age-eligible child based on the following specific prioritized categories:

  • Continuing current students have first priority
  • Students who left during the school year and are rejoining NVNS have second priority
  • Alumni families have third priority (for a child to fall under the alumni classification, they must have an immediate family member who attended NVNS – i.e. sibling, parent, or grandparent)
  • Families who are brand-new to the school have fourth priority

Within each priority category, enrollment offers are made following wait list date order – so children within a specific category who joined our wait list earlier will have precedence over those who joined it later. In other words, within each priority category, it’s “first come, first served” – so adding your child to the wait list as early as possible significantly increases your chances of receiving an enrollment offer when your child becomes age-eligible for our program.

We generally start the enrollment process for the upcoming school year in March or April and continue throughout the Spring and Summer as needed in order to fill both of our classes before our school year starts in mid-September. It can take quite a bit of time to work our way through the wait list and fill both classes, so please don’t be discouraged if you haven’t gotten an enrollment offer in the early spring – you very well may receive one before the process is complete, and you are always welcome to reach out to our Administrative Coordinator to find out where we are in the process and where your child is on our wait list.

Please understand that wait list numbers can change quite significantly based on movement within the various priority categories and it’s very difficult to predict how many wait list entries we will go through in order to fill our classes. In some years we offer spots to a surprisingly large number of children from our wait list, while in other years both classes fill very quickly and experience very little churn. Unfortunately, there’s no good way to predict how the process will go for any particular year, but families are always welcome to reach out to our Administrative Coordinator, Heather Shumaker, at or (707) 548-3005 to discuss their individual situations and specific questions or concerns.