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About Manhattan Beach Nursery School

Since our beginnings in 1956, Manhattan Beach Nursery School has been committed to being a warm and welcoming home for both children and their caregivers. When your child steps through the wooden gates into MBNS, they enter into an environment full of play, discovery and wonder. We celebrate the individuality of each child and are committed to respecting and trusting them and their process.  Children are encouraged to display their full range of emotions and means of expression creatively, cognitively and physically. 

MBNS isn't just a space for children; it provides a special community for their parents and caregivers as well. Our unique co-operative environment lends itself to opportunities for parents and caregivers to befriend each other and to share and support one another in the hard yet meaningful work of raising children. Learn more about our Family Participation responsibilities.

We believe that children learn best when they are allowed the freedom to control and explore their own environment.

As a community, we agree to combat racism, homophobia, classism, ageism, bodyism, sexism and religious and non-religious discrimination. Nor do we discriminate on the basis of national origin, ethnic origin, ableness, special needs, or gender identity. Our program is based on the guidelines set forth by the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) and the anti-bias curriculum developed by Pacific Oaks College.

Our Staff

Family Participation

Manhattan Beach Nursery School is a family participation co-operative and a community that works together in loving service to the children and each other. As such, MBNS operates largely through the volunteer efforts of each of our member families. Member participation responsibilities include:


Participation Day

One member (18+) from each family is responsible to work at school directly with the children in an assigned post one day per week, from 8:45am-12:15pm. Assignments are made at the beginning of the school year or at enrollment.


Family Job

Each family is assigned a family 'job', some of which include a position on the board. These jobs are vital to the day-to-day business of running MBNS and are assigned at the time of enrollment. Some jobs include: record keeper, school photographer, among others.


Families Tending to School

Each family is required to complete 6 hours of school maintenance work each semester (2 hours during each session of Summer school). Work can look like: repairing broken toys, washing school laundry or sweeping.



Tuition accounts for the staff salaries and property taxes on our school building. The rest of the money required to keep school running come from fundraisers held throughout the year. Each family is responsible for participating in fundraising activities.


Shared Snack

During the regular school year, families provide a group snack on Tuesdays and Wednesdays on a rotating basis. Some ideal snacks include: carrots & hummus, apples & sunflower butter, veggie crudite, hard boiled eggs, etc.


Adult Education Meetings

We offer adult education meetings to support families on their parenting journey. Some of these meetings require attendance of at least one family member without children present.

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