About CNS


Founded in 1975, The Children’s Nursery School (CNS) is a state-licensed, non-profit co-operative preschool in the heart of Portland, Maine. Our child-centered program invites students to flourish academically and socially by focusing on exploration and  cooperation. Both teachers and parents guide that experience by providing an engaging environment with a careful balance of structure and free play.

We cap enrollment at 18 children and the classroom always has four adults present: Our wonderful head teacher Kate and our equally dedicated assistant teacher Resa, plus two parents. Parents bring in their own ideas and expertise to create a truly unique learning environment targeting the interests, developmental stages and desires of the class.

In addition to a flexible and evolving curriculum, the school also has a rich history of tradition, including annual events like the Grand Bazaar and the Parade to the Western Promenade.

In 2017, The Children’s Nursery School earned NAEYC accreditation and Step 4 in the Quality of Maine Rating System – the highest level.

For more than 30 years, NAEYC accreditation of Early Learning Programs has worked with programs to implement best practices and develop a consistent understanding of how to achieve and maintain high quality.