Frequently Asked Questions
What makes CEC different from other child care centers?
- We offer continuous care for children from age 3 months to entry into kindergarten or the first grade. This means that through his or her 5th (or 6th) year, your child will grow up with the same friends and day care providers in the same environment.
- Our teacher-child ratios are low which makes it possible for our staff to provide highly personalized care.
- Our staff is very dedicated and many of our teachers have been with us for five years or more. They are a highly trained, experienced, ethnically diverse, friendly and loving group.
- At CEC the children learn through play. Our play-based curriculum lets children discover the world around them, begin developing basic social skills, and learn about themselves by playing games and engaging in structured and unstructured activities.
- Language development is a major focus. Since language is essential for communication and learning abstract ideas, we emphasize it. Children are also exposed to art, music, gymnastics, nature study, computers, dance, field trips, cooking and drama.
- Transitions are carefully planned. We wait until three or more children are ready to move from one program to the next, and then do it gradually over the course of a month. Initially a teacher from the previous program spends time in the transition group.
- We have long hours. CEC is open from 7:45 am to 5:45 pm. For more information, please see Scheduling Options.
- We have a proven record. Founded in 1981, CEC's curriculum, training methods, and supportive environment have been developed through years of experience. Bananas and other referral sources consistently rate CEC among the top child care centers in the East Bay.
For more detailed information, please see The CEC Philosophy.
Where are you located?
CEC is located one block south of University Avenue, and three blocks west of Sacramento. The former home of the Berkeley Adult School West Campus is right next door. If you drive down Addison past where Andronico's was located and Strawberry Creek Park, the road forces you to turn left onto Browning. After you go around that curve, you'll immediately see the large gymnasium and an opening in the fence to its left. Turn into the parking lot and go all the way to the rear where you'll see CEC.
What are your hours?
CEC is open from 7:45am to 5:45pm. For more information, please see Scheduling Options.
Does my child have to be potty trained to attend CEC?
No. For more information, please see our Potty Training Policy.
What is your teacher to child ratios?
CEC's small staff-to-child ratios are the best in Berkeley:
- Infants (6 weeks to 15 months): One teacher to 3 children
- Toddlers (15 months to 2 years): One teacher to 4 children
- Twos (2 years to 3 years): One teacher to 5 children
- Preschool (3 years to 4 years): One teacher to 7 children
- Pre-K (4 years to Kindergarten or 1st grade entry): One teacher to 8 children
Do I need to make an appointment to schedule a tour of CEC?
Infant through Pre-K Program Tours:
Yes, tours are by appointment only (sorry, no drop-ins), and visits are in 45 minute slots.
Monday, Tuesday, and Thursday:
9:30 am - 12:00 pm; 2:30 - 4:00 pm
Wednesday and Friday:
9:30 am - 12:00 pm
Please call CEC at (510) 548-1414 to schedule an appointment or fill out this form
How much does CEC cost?
Your child's tuition depends on their age. Please see our full schedule of fees.
How qualified are your teachers?
Teachers are carefully screened based on their experience in the child care field, educational credits, and ability to mesh with the CEC philosophy. Please see Teachers for more information.
How do I apply?
Please contact CEC to obtain a copy of our application form, (510) 548-1414.