How much does kindergarten cost?
Ashburn, VA

How much does kindergarten cost?

Ashburn, VA

How much does kindergarten cost?

$0average half-day tuition cost per year (public)
$1,000 – $4,500average full-day tuition cost per year (public)
$10,000 – $35,000average tuition cost per year (private)

Get free estimates for your project or view our cost guide below:

$0 average half-day tuition cost per year (public)

$1,000 – $4,500 average full-day tuition cost per year (public)

$10,000 – $35,000 average tuition cost per year (private)

Get free estimates for your project or view our cost guide below:
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Daniel Bal
Written by
Daniel Bal
Edited by
Sarah Noel
Fact-checked by
Tom Grupa

Kindergarten cost

Public kindergarten costs $1,000 to $4,500 per year for full-day enrollment or is free in some states. Half-day kindergarten is free in most states. Private kindergarten tuition fees are $10,000 to $35,000 per year. Higher kindergarten prices apply for transportation, lunch, and extended-hours care.

Kindergarten cost
Kindergarten program type Monthly cost* Yearly tuition
Public kindergarten half day $0 $0
Public kindergarten full day (free in some states)  $100 – $450 $1,000 – $4,500
Private kindergarten  $1,000 – $3,500 $10,000 – $35,000

*For 10 months.

A kindergarten teacher showing children a book with the alphabet.
A kindergarten teacher showing children a book with the alphabet.
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Public kindergarten cost

Public schools offer free half-day kindergarten in most states. However, public kindergarten costs $1,000 to $4,500 annually for non-residents or for full-day kindergarten options in some states. Federal funding is available for families who need financial aid to help cover tuition costs.

Private kindergarten cost

Private kindergarten costs $10,000 to $35,000 annually or up to $60,000yearly for the most exclusive schools. Catholic private kindergarten is typically the cheapest at $3,000 to $8,000 annually. Total tuition costs depend on the location, student-teacher ratios, unique courses offered, and enrollment numbers.

Additional kindergarten tuition fees

Extra kindergarten tuition fees not covered by the enrollment payment include:

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  • Public school lunch –Public school meals cost $2 to $3 each or are free in some places. Free or discounted meals are available in most schools for low-income families.

  • Private school lunch – Most private schools offer free hot meals as part of tuition or charge $6 to $10 per lunch depending on the food selection.

  • Public school transportation ­– Public school buses are free in some cities or cost $100 to $400 annually depending on local school policies.

  • Private school transportation –Bus service to a private school costs $500 to $3,000 annually depending on the distance and discounts for multiple children in the same family. Not all independent schools provide bus service.

  • Before and after school care costs $140 to $400 per month for public schools and $200 to $800 per month for private schools.

  • New family fee –Private schools typically charge a one-time fee of $500 to $2,000 when enrolling the first child from a family. This non-refundable fee sometimes includes tuition refund insurance, or this insurance can be a separate extra charge.

  • Discounts –Tuition reductions are available from some schools for enrolling siblings, upfront payments made early, family of the faculty, and those from low-income households.

Kindergarten FAQs

Is kindergarten mandatory?

Kindergarten is mandatory in 19 states and Washington, D.C. while other states offer exceptions to this requirement. If a child passes academic readiness screening, then some districts allow them to skip kindergarten and go right into first grade.The following states require children to attend kindergarten:

  • Arkansas

  • Connecticut

  • Delaware

  • Hawaii

  • Louisiana

  • Maryland

  • Nebraska

  • Nevada

  • New Mexico

  • Ohio

  • Oklahoma (half-day minimum)

  • Pennsylvania

  • Rhode Island

  • South Carolina

  • South Dakota

  • Tennessee

  • Virginia

  • Washington D.C.

  • West Virginia

  • Wisconsin

What do you learn in kindergarten?

In kindergarten, children learn all or most of the following:

  • Alphabet – Identify the letters of the alphabet.

  • Reading – Learn short words that are easy to sound out.

  • Writing – Print lower- and upper-case letters, short words, and their name.

  • Numbers –Understand numbers 1 to 20 and basic counting.

  • Basic addition & subtraction –Add or remove objects from a set.

  • Time –Determine the time of day and the seasons.

  • Shapes – Learn the names of basic shapes like a circle, square, rectangle, etc.

  • Socialization skills – Make friends, resolve conflict, work in a team, and follow rules.

  • Physical activities – Learn games that develop basic motor skills.

  • Healthy habits – Review good personal hygiene practices.

At what age do kids start kindergarten?

Most states require kids to start kindergarten when they turn 5 years old on or before September 1st.

The table below shows states with different admission-age requirements.

Kindergarten-entrance cutoff dates by state
Must turn 5 by this date State
  • Connecticut
July 31
  • Hawaii
  • Kentucky
  • Missouri
  • North Dakota
August 1
  • Arkansas
  • Indiana
  • Kentucky
August 15
  • Tennessee
August 31
  • Arizona
  • Delaware
  • Kansas
  • North Carolina
  • Washington
  • West Virginia
September 10
  • Montana
September 15
  • Iowa
  • Wyoming
September 30
  • D.C.
  • Louisiana
  • Nebraska
  • Nevada
  • Virginia
October 1
  • Colorado
  • New Jersey
October 15
  • Maine

*All unlisted states require kids to turn 5 on or before September 1st.

How long is kindergarten?

Kindergarten lasts for 1 school year on average in half or full-day sessions, and some states allow up to 2 years of kindergarten. Local school districts decide the school schedule and programs to offer.

  • Half-day programs last 2.5 to 4.0 hours daily while full-day programs are 5.0 to 6.5 hours long.

  • Most states have kindergarten courses for 160 to 180 days per year.

Tips for finding a kindergarten

When searching for the best kindergarten near you, be sure to:

  • Ask if all the teachers have college degrees and teaching licenses.

  • Visit all the local public and private kindergarten options to compare them.

  • Check if you qualify for free tuition or reduced enrollment fees.

  • Read online reviews at and Google.

  • Ask other parents and former students about their experiences at the school.

  • Request copies of all enrollment forms, school policies, and curriculums.

  • Keep copies of all payment schedules and the refund terms and conditions.

Questions to ask

  • What is the average class size?

  • How will my child be tested?

  • What is the schedule for a typical day?

  • Do you have programs for gifted children or those with learning difficulties?

  • What will my child learn?

  • Is additional tutoring available?

  • How much time is there for recess or physical education?

  • What kinds of homework do you assign?

  • How often do teachers communicate with parents?

  • Does the school offer a bus service?

  • Can you show me the school supplies list?

  • Is a school nurse available in the building?

  • How are discipline issues handled?

  • What are the school’s safety procedures?

  • Are lunch or any snacks offered, and what do they cost?

  • Can I take a tour of the school?

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