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St. Paul’s Childhood Center (SPCC) is a nonprofit school for early childhood education and a program of St. Paul’s United Church of Christ (http://www.spucconsummit.org/cms/). 

SPCC was founded September 4, 1970, by St. Paul’s United Church of Christ (SPUCC). SPCC is a nonsectarian school, however SPUCC and SPCC share common values of inclusivity, diversity, social and environmental justice. 

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SPCC serves children six weeks to twelve years old (Summer School Age Program), in the beautiful and historic Summit Hill-Grand Avenue neighborhood. SPCC voluntarily participates in the Parent Aware quality rating system and is a four star (out of four) school as well as a NECPA (National Early Childhood Program Accreditation) accredited school. Our playground is one of ten in Minnesota certified as a Nature Explore Classroom, and was one of the first three schools in Minnesota to receive this certification. In 2016, St. Paul Magazine named SPCC “Best Preschool/Early Childhood Education Center,” in St. Paul. Our approach to early childhood education is inspired by the philosophy of the municipal  preschools and infant-toddler centers of Reggio Emilia, Italy; and the pedagogies of Vgotsky, Piaget, Montessori, and Gardner. We are an inclusive school and follow anti-bias education practices. 

The mission of SPCC is to provide the community an exceptional family-centered school for early learning, inspired by the schools of Reggio Emilia, that views children as agents of their learning experiences, with valuable ideas worthy of exploration. Through collaboration with families, partnerships in our local community, engaging in anti-bias education practices, explorations of art and nature, recognition of the importance of play, intentional interactions, and promotion of access to early childhood education, SPCC seeks to foster an enriching, supportive, environment facilitated by educated, experienced, and professional faculty that nurtures a child’s natural curiosity of the world.

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We are licensed by the state of Minnesota, and are proud to offer a space for early learning with low child to teacher ratios and an expceptionally educated and experienced faculty. SPCC is located at Summit Ave and Milton St., across from Mitchell Hamline School of Law, and in the heart of the Grand Avenue business district. SPCC has been providing the community an exceptional resource for early childhood education for forty-five years.

Our facility includes spacious classrooms filled with natural light, a superb large muscle room, an art studio, a whimsical Nature Explore certified playground,  and an educated, professional, nurturing faculty, dedicated to the field of early childhood education.


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Make sure your child’s cubby is stocked with weather appropriate clothing. We play in muddy puddles here! Your child should have weather appropriate clothing for walks, playing in the mud, stomping in puddles, and playing in the water on a warm sunny day. Every day be prepared for adventure! If you need help providing any of these items for your child please let us know, we can help! 

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“The world is but a canvas to our imagination.”

 ~Henry David Thoreau 

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