Montessori School Costs: Tuition for Day Care, Preschool, etc

Children in class at a Montessori school

Short Answer — Montessori school costs are set by the individual school. Public and charter Montessori schools don’t charge tuition; at private Montessori schools, you can expect to pay anywhere from around $4,500 to $37,000 per year, depending on your child’s age, where you live, and the class schedule.

Montessori School Costs Explained

Montessori is an educational methodology, not a single nationwide chain of schools. As such, Montessori schools and day care centers operate independently, setting their own tuition policies and prices.[1][2]

We gathered quotes from 40 private Montessori schools across the U.S. to give you an idea of what you might expect to pay for your child’s tuition, depending on your region.

Montessori schools may be public, charter, or private. The majority of Montessori schools are private and charge tuition.[1]

However, if you’re unable to find a private school within your price range, public and charter schools are tuition-free.[1][3]

In the table below, we provide private school tuition ranges for each age group based on quotes gathered within each region of the U.S. (Northeast, Midwest, South, and West).

Age Group Northeast Midwest South West
Infant and Toddler (Half Day) $6,300 to $14,700 $8,300 to $10,800 $5,300 to $11,500 $10,300 to $21,600
Infant and Toddler (Full Day) $14,200 to $24,400 $7,400 to $16,700 $6,300 to $15,400 $12,000 to $31,000
Primary (Half Day) $4,500 to $13,200 $5,000 to $8,800 $5,300 to $14,000 $10,000 to $21,000
Primary (Full Day) $6,100 to $17,300 $5,900 to $13,600 $6,300 to $16,200 $10,100 to $36,400
Kindergarten $7,800 to $18,100 $8,100 to $13,500 $10,200 to $16,200 $15,000 to $26,000
Lower Elementary $7,800 to $18,500 $8,300 to $13,800 $9,700 to $17,600 $13,800 to $26,000
Upper Elementary $7,800 to $8,800 $8,300 to $13,800 $10,200 to $18,500 $12,500 to $20,300
Middle School $9,300 to $16,300 $13,700 to $14,600 $13,000 to $14,500 $17,000 to $22,000
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Note that the infant and toddler row of the table above includes all programs up to age three.

Additionally, “Primary” is the Montessori preschool program for children between three and six years old.

Additional Fees

At all but one of the Montessori schools and day care centers we investigated, parents are responsible for paying additional fees alongside tuition.

The following table outlines the various fees your local Montessori school may charge, along with price ranges based on the 40 schools we contacted.

Fee Type Price Range
Application $35 to $150 (one-time payment)
Registration $100 to $400 per year
Snacks or meal plans $100 to $300 per semester or year
Supplies (all age groups) $75 to $400 per year
Learning materials (elementary and middle school) $200 to $600 per year
Field trips $50 to $100 per year
Overnight travel $500 to $1,500 per year
Late pickup Varies; schools may charge per minute, per ten minutes, per hour, or a flat fee
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Cost Factors

As noted above, Montessori schools and day care centers set their own tuition prices.

Costs generally vary based on the following factors:[1][4]

  • Child’s age:
    Montessori schools may offer programs for infants to teens, depending on the school. Classrooms are separated by age, and all of the schools we contacted charge varied tuition rates for each age group.
  • Class schedule:
    Most Montessori centers — including all but one of the 40 we contacted — offer half-day or full-day schedules. Many also offer extended schedules with earlier start times and later end times to accommodate working parents (at an additional cost). The more time your child spends at school, the more expensive their tuition will be.
  • Geographic location:
    In locations with an overall higher cost of living, such as major cities and metropolitan areas, tuition costs tend to be higher than average.
  • Inclusions:
    It’s a good idea to make note of what tuition covers when comparing several school options. Many schools charge separate fees for things like snacks and classroom materials, but some include those fees in their tuition rate.

For examples of cost breakdowns for particular Montessori programs, see our research on the tuition costs at The Gardner School and Bright Horizons.

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