Mission and History

Our Mission

St. Michael’s is dedicated to building strong foundations for all children in the first five years of life and to supporting families as their educational journey begins. We foster a safe, nurturing, inclusive environment and seek the highest standards in our practice, curriculum, and professionals.

We are committed to the community we serve and believe a sense of community is a core strength for children, families, and educators.

Our Philosophy

At St. Michael’s, we offer a nurturing and stimulating environment and believe that all children carry the potential for success in school and life. We practice a “whole child” approach and strive to ensure that each child’s unique and individual physical, emotional, social and intellectual needs are met and optimized.

Our curriculum encompasses lessons designed to enhance each child’s understanding of the world around them while encouraging learning through purposeful play.

​We believe that a strong home-school partnership is essential for the success of each child. St. Michael’s encourages parents/guardians to visit at any time and to be an active participant in their child’s care and education.

St. Michael’s welcomes a rich variety of individuals from diverse religious, cultural, ethnic and economic backgrounds.

Our History & Tradition

Founded in 1890, St. Michael’s School and Nursery is Delaware’s oldest early childhood program and one of the oldest in the nation. It was originally part of St. Michael’s Episcopal Mission near Front and Adams Street on Wilmington’s west side. We offered shelter with safety, comfort and life lessons to children whose working parents had limited choices. In its early days, St. Michael’s also operated a hospital for babies and was the only place in the city where families of color could receive medical attention. We also offered shelter to homeless and abandoned children as well as facilitated adoptions. Full-day kindergarten was added to the school in 1908.

Today, 130 years after its founding, St. Michael’s has evolved from being primarily a childcare agency to a premier school for early childhood education in Wilmington for newborns through pre-kindergarten. It is a caring and stimulating environment designed for the way young children grow and learn.

Although much has changed during the school’s long history of service to Wilmington and the surrounding neighborhoods, providing access to high quality, affordable childcare and early education for young children of working parents remains the school’s core mission.

We help every child develop these values:


a unique and special person. The world and mankind will only ever see one of me.


and I will be a lifelong learner and creative problem solver.


about the family of people on earth, and the animals and plants that share my environment.


do my best because I am capable of working hard.


because I am strong.


St. Michael’s does not discriminate by sex, race, family composition, national origin or religion. The broad socio/economic background of our children and families helps foster harmony and understanding.