Early Childhood Program

Welcome to St. Paul of the Cross School! We are happy to have this opportunity to share St. Paul of the Cross with you. As you tour the school, you will experience a community committed to outstanding Catholic education. At each grade level, students are challenged by a rigorous curriculum that utilizes developmentally appropriate best practices designed to meet the needs of learners in the 21st century. Our mission and philosophy are dedicated to all aspects of your child’s growth: spiritual, moral, emotional, physical, and intellectual.

Our early childhood program offers six play-based, multiage classrooms (3 & 4-year-olds). In the 2021-2022 school year, we piloted two multiage classrooms with positive results. Research shows that children from mixed-age classrooms have more positive attitudes towards themselves, to life and school. Younger children tend to expand their interests and gravitate towards more complex activities. Older children have opportunities to genuinely act as leaders, build empathy and have a sense of responsibility. A multiage classroom promotes social and language development for younger and older children. After two years of preschool, the children move into one of four kindergarten classrooms. Our kindergarten program provides more academic structure than preschool, however we continue to nurture the whole young child.

Our certified teachers, assisted by full-time instructional assistants, utilize curricula that reflect Illinois early learning and development and national and international learning standards. These standards provide reasonable expectations for children’s growth, development, and learning in the early years.
As you listen and learn about our program, please feel free to ask questions. This is a big step, and we value the opportunity to be partners in the formation and development of your child.

Thank you for your time and consideration.

Mrs. Catherine Hart
Director of Early Childhood



We, at St. Paul of the Cross School Park Ridge, are concerned with educating the total child in our Catholic faith based curriculum. Our goal is to appreciate and support the individuality of your child. We believe that a child’s social, emotional, cognitive, physical, and creative growth is nurtured through play, discovery, and meaningful hands-on experiences. We will assist your child in developing a positive self-image and positive attitude toward school.

Multiage Preschool 

Our play-based preschool program is both flexible and structured. Our teachers and staff provide a faith-based, positive developmental atmosphere for your child through knowledge of the ways in which play can support cognitive, emotional, moral, social, and physical development. They include many opportunities for dramatic play, art, music, and language development. 

Daily schedules include both self-directed and teacher-directed play experiences. Play gives your child the freedom to select from a variety of activities. More structured teacher-directed learning takes place through stories, music, and projects. Your child’s creative expression is encouraged through dramatic play, art, music, and sensory activities. Your child’s self-help skills and independence are continually developing. Fine motor skills are strengthened through cutting, pasting, playing with manipulatives and a variety of other activities.

Throughout the two years, your child works on enhancing basic concepts such as: color, size, shape, letter recognition, numbers, more than, less than, sequencing, Bible stories, and prayers. All our children are constantly encouraged to explore their changing environment and become responsible independent learners. A (two year cycle (A & B)) thematic based curriculum design equips your child with skills aimed at independence, readiness, verbal fluency, and the ability to work independently as well as in a group.

We invite you to learn more about our philosophy, curriculum, class offerings or to schedule a classroom visit. We want to partner with you to make the early education experience exceptional for you and your child. 

                         2022-2023 Preschool/Prekindergarten program  


Child must be 3 years old by September 1st

2 Day Program

Preschool 3 (Two Full-Days)

Preschool 3 (Two Half-Days) Mornings Only


3 Day Program                                            

Preschool 3 (Three Full-Days)

Preschool 3 (Three Half-Days) Mornings Only


5 Day Program                                           

Preschool 3 (Five Full-Days)

Preschool 3 (Five Half-Days) Mornings Only

Monday - Friday



Child must be 4 years old by September 1st

3 Day Program                                             

Preschool 4 (Three Full-Days)

Preschool 4 (Three Half-Days) Mornings Only


5 Day Program                                      

Preschool 4 (Five Full-Days)

Preschool 4 (Five Half-Days) Mornings Only

Monday - Friday


Before and after school care (Extended Day Program) is available for both Preschool and Prekindergarten students. Please refer to the current EDP information by clicking on the link below. 

Lunch Bunch 

We are pleased to offer a program called Lunch Bunch, an opportunity for students to stay at school for an additional hour after the morning classes. Lunch Bunch extends the morning preschool (3 & 4 year olds) experience on one or more of their class days by incorporating lunch and constructive playtime. It is designed to align with the SPC philosophy of teaching socialization, cooperation and respect in our faith-based environment. Children should bring their own lunch and drink each day. The fee is $10 per day and would be billed monthly.

Please click on this link for information on our Extended Day program.

For more information, please contact our Director of Admissions, Meghan Waldeck at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. We look forward to showing you and your child why SPC is the Place to Be!