Our Philosophy

Leila Day is committed to promoting children’s social, emotional, cognitive, and physical growth within a warm, loving setting. Each day includes free play and structured activities, both indoors and outdoors.

  • We believe that young children learn best through play and hands-on experiences and need opportunities to explore the world around them directly.
  • We create a community in which children learn about their own feelings and how to get along with others.
  • We work to foster children’s positive self-image, as well as a sense of competence and mastery.
  • We help children learn to love “school” and become active learners with good problem-solving skills.

Language development is central to all of our programs, with emphasis on learning to talk and listen, build vocabulary, share ideas and information, and enjoy books and creative writing in many forms.  Math materials, games and puzzles, and a great many tools and pieces of equipment assist in math and scientific explorations.  Music, arts and movement are also integrated into the daily routine. Children pursue their interests in reading, writing, numbers and creative arts at their own pace; each child’s individual readiness is recognized and respected.

What Makes us Unique



Leila Day’s extraordinarily talented and experienced teaching staff of 22 educators provide the foundation for ?the school’s stellar care.  All professional staff are experienced and trained in early childhood education.  The Leila Day Director oversees all aspects of the school programs and operations.  An Assistant Director, a Cook, and a part-time Administrative Associate also provide support.



Leila Day is located in a charming yellow Victorian house on 2½ acres in the residential East Rock neighborhood of New Haven.  The converted house has a large modern wing with three classrooms.  An adjacent building provides space for the part-day programs.  The extensive playground spaces serve as an extension of the classroom, and offer myriad opportunities to explore nature and engage in active, physical play. 



Delicious and nutritious breakfast, lunch and snacks, prepared in the school kitchen by our professional cook are available to all students in the full-day programs.  Whole grains, as well as fresh fruits and vegetables are served daily.  Meals are served family style and the staff eats with the children.  Every effort is made to accommodate children’s food allergies and/or religious or vegetarian preferences.  Children in the Morning Program are served an early snack and bring their own lunches from home.  The Afterschool Program serves an afternoon snack.



Parents are a vital part of the Leila Day community.  Many parents are actively involved in organizing community-building events and fundraising activities.  All parents are welcome to visit the school at any time.



With active fundraising and support from a variety of sources, Leila Day is able to provide our full-day child care to working families using a sliding scale based on family income. Contributions from former families and friends in the community – including the United Way and the Community Foundation of Greater New Haven – are essential to our ability to fulfill this mission.  We receive additional subsidies for the cost of care through participation in Connecticut’s School Readiness and Care 4 Kids programs.



Full Day 7:30 am – 5:30 pm

Morning Program 8:30 am – 1:00 pm

Afterschool Program 2:30 pm – 5:30 pm

Open 48 weeks per year, Monday-Friday