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Our History

The Children's School was founded in 2004 by Daniel P. Ryan in order to bring progressive education, with its historical Chicago roots in the work of John Dewey and others, to the western suburbs.  Daniel's vision was to create a project-based, child-centered learning environment where each child's voice would be honored along with his or her unique developmental journey.  In the school's first year, Daniel Ryan and Nadine Brockman taught 13 students in grades K and 1 in a cozy two-room house.


Each year, The Children's School added a new Kindergarten class.  Within two years, enrollment had risen to 32 students as interest in progressive education grew in the surrounding communities.  In 2006, the school moved to its current facility on the campus of St. Mary of Celle in Berwyn and hired additional teachers Christy Martin and Shannon Berry.


Today, enrollment is over 80 students in grades K-5 and our graduates are thriving in public and private schools around the Chicago area.  Under the leadership of a volunteer Board of Directors, The Children's School has built a solid financial reserve and is engaged in ongoing exploration of how best to nurture and spread our vision of joyful, active, unpressured, collaborative learning for children.


Beginning in 2013, The Children's School will offer middle level grades.  We are excited to grow and meet the needs of our oldest students!  We are adding classroom space, adding teacher talent, and developing a robust and exciting middle level curriculum. 


We invite you to learn more about the school today by browsing through other pages on this site.


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1428 Wesley Avenue   Berwyn, Illinois 60402   Phone : 708.484.8033  |  Contact  |  Map
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