Peninsula School

  • Since 1925, Peninsula's mission has been to provide a child-centered, education community that promotes the development of the whole child.
  • Teachers and parents work together to foster creativity, independence, joy of learning, personal responsibility, and self-esteem as well as academic excellence.
  • The success of this mission has depended upon the creation of an "extended family" of children, faculty, and parents.
  • Teachers provide the guidance, trust and unconditional support necessary for children to experiment and learn about themselves and their world.
  • The school's goals are to help children grow in all areas: intellectually, socially, emotionally and physically; and to nourish children's natural creativity and desire to learn through a wide variety of experiences.
  • Peninsula School is a member of the Progressive School Network.
  • We are adpating to Covid-19 in partnership with our staff and parent communities. Our Distance Learning Plan, Reopening Plan, Pandemic Operations Plan, and resources for families provide more information on how we are responding.

Top Placements

Peninsula School places among the top 20% of private schools in California for:

School Overview

Grades OfferedGrades Nursery/Preschool-8
Year Founded1925
Summer School OfferedYes
Summer Program DetailsLink to Summer Program Details

Student Body

Total Students250 students
Student Body TypeCo-ed
% Students of Color
State avg.: 45%
Students by Grade Peninsula School Student By Grade

Academics and Faculty

Total Classroom Teachers51 teachers
Student : Teacher Ratio5:1
National avg.: 13:1
% Faculty w/Advanced Degree
Average Class Size19 students
Matriculation DataMatric. DataLink to Matriculation Data
Classroom Dress CodeCasual

Finances and Admission

Admission DeadlineJan. 19 / rolling
Yearly Tuition Cost$22,640
Tuition NotesNursery: $17,230 (Half Day) K-8: $22,640 Three tuition payment plans are offered.
% on Financial Aid
Acceptance Rate
National avg.: 85%
Admissions DirectorMary Hofstedt


Total Sports Offered1 sport

School Notes

A scheduled meeting with the Admissions Director is required.  Optional is attending a Thursday School Tour on 10/24, 11/7, 12/5, 12/11, or 1/9 beginning at 11:00am; and/or a Kingergarten and Nursery Open House: 10/26 and 1/11, 10-11:30am. Applications are due January 21, 2020. Evaluations, testing, school reports, confidential teacher reports and financial aid applications follow.  Nursery applicants visit Saturday, February 2, 2020.  Kindergarten applicants visit Saturday, February 8, 2020.  1st - 8th grade students are invited to visit classes in the month of February. Interviews for selected parents/guardians begin the end of February 2020. Decision letters are mailed March 20, 2020.

Several aspects make Peninsula unique among independent schools:
  • A focus on learning not letter grades: At Peninsula, we cultivate and celebrate intellectual curiosity and a love of learning. Our non-competitive environment supports student collaboration, positive risk taking, creativity, and intrinsic motivation. Rather than striving to be an "A" or "B" student, students grow to see learning as a treasured opportunity and a lifelong, personal journey.
  • Multi-age groupings at the primary level: Our primary school program has no formal grade levels, supporting students to explore and learn alongside a broader age-range of peers than you`ll find at traditional schools. Children are placed into classrooms that focus on aligning their developmental and cognitive readiness with that of a particular peer group. Such multi-age groupings support children to see themselves as individual learners who are developing at their own pace. Our students come to understand friendships are built with older and younger children.
  • Democratic learning is part of curriculum: In our classrooms, students are active participants in their learning and able to see their school experience in relationship to the outside world. Student voice, choice, and democratic decision-making practices are embedded in Peninsula`s model. We recognize children as community members, decision-makers, and creators not just future adults.
  • Social-emotional development is as important as intellectual development: Our all-school focus on social and emotional learning cultivates self-awareness, empathy, and capacity for collaboration. Additionally, students are provided time to reflect on their learning. The relationships built at Peninsula often become lifelong bonds that support children across their lifetime.
  • The natural setting is part of the school experience: Peninsula`s spacious campus, filled with native trees and plants, invites students to discover aspects of the natural world in a school setting. Children participate in relaxed and unstructured play, developing an awareness of nature that cultivates their sense of place and the value of environmental stewardship.
  • The arts are part of daily learning and discovery: Peninsula offers dedicated teachers and studio spaces for drama, art, clay wood work, weaving, and music. 

Profile last updated:

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  • School Location Miles Grades Students
  • Menlo Park
    Grades: K-8 | 175 students
    0.9 miles
    50 Terminal Ave
    Menlo Park, CA 94025
    (650) 327-5052
    0.9 K-8
  • Menlo Park
    Grades: PK-5 | 302 students
    3.3 miles
    2245 Avy Avenue
    Menlo Park, CA 94025
    (650) 854-4545
    3.3 PK-5
  • Menlo Park
    Grades: PK-8 | 271 students
    1.1 miles
    1250 Laurel Street
    Menlo Park, CA 94025
    (650) 325-7304
    1.1 PK-8
  • Palo Alto
    Grades: K-8 | 324 students
    3.2 miles
    2890 Middlefield Rd
    Palo Alto, CA 94306
    (650) 328-1711
    3.2 K-8
  • Belmont
    Grades: PK-5 | 265 students
    7.8 miles
    2200 Carlmont Dr
    Belmont, CA 94002
    (650) 593-6175
    7.8 PK-5

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Did You Know?
The average private school tuition in California is $11,498 for elementary schools and $19,928 for high schools (read more about average private school tuition across the country).
The average acceptance rate in California is 84% (read more about average acceptance rates across the country).