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Our YMCA Child Development Centers are dedicated to providing high quality professional care to infants, toddlers and preschool children. Creating the strong emotional bonds between the child, families and other children is the primary focus. Children need to feel emotionally and physically safe in their environment to reach their highest potential. 


Our Philosophy

At the Y, we recognize the importance of each step in a child's learning experiences. Our programs encourage physical, emotional, and cognitive growth. We believe in focusing on each child individually and tailor our curriculum accordingly.


In partnership with the City of South San Francisco and the YMCA of San Francisco, Gateway Child Development Center has been in operation since July 2004 offering early care and education to children ages three months to five years old.  We are accredited by the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) and are part of Quality Counts! 



Gateway uses the Ages and Stages Developmental Questionnaire and the Desired Results Developmental Profile (DRDP) for children and families to evaluate our program and child developmental progress. Parent Teacher conferences are held twice a year.

Our Staff

The center is staffed with a caring and experienced workforce.

  • Our Child Development Program Directors have a degree in Child & Adolescent Development and with multiple years of experience in childcare, teaching, supervision and management.
  • Our Assistant Director/Curriculum Coordinator has a degree in Early Childhood Education or related field with a minimum of three years experience working with children.

Each member of the teaching staff, as well as the Director and Assistant Director holds a teaching permit from the California Commission on Teaching Credentialing. Our team members are selected based on their professionalism, skills, training and ability to work with children. All personnel meet or exceed California’s Community Care licensing educational and experience requirements. A background check and fingerprinting are completed before an individual is eligible to work at the center. We understand that a well-trained, stable staff that cares deeply about children is central to a quality program.

The YMCA has a training series to advance the knowledge and development of all levels of staff. Mandatory YMCA training for child care staff includes first aid, CPR and Child Abuse Prevention.

Tuition Rates

Monthly Rates: 5 full days per week (Monday-Friday)

The child care fee includes a family membership to the YMCA of San Francisco. Family membership will start on the child’s first day of official enrollment at Gateway Child Development Center.

$2,174 - Infants (Ages 3-24 months)
$1,827 - Toddlers (Ages 2–3 years)
$1,507 - Preschoolers  (Ages 3-5 years)

Gateway is a full-time program and does not offer part-time care. We accept 3rd party subsidies such as Children’s Council, 4 C’s, DHS, and other programs. Financial assistance may be available for those families who qualify. While the majority of our enrollment is done during the summer months between July and September, we do offer year-round enrollment as space becomes available and pull from those families who have enrolled on our waitlist. 

Current Ratios

Infants (Ages 3-24 months): 1:4

  • Group Size: 8

Toddlers (Ages 2–3 years): 1:5

  • Group Size: 10

Preschoolers  (Ages 3-5 years): 1:10

  • Group Size: 10

For more information and to get on our waitlist, please call (650) 873-8145 or email Derica Malaca, Administrative Assistant dmalaca@ymcasf.org for more information. There is a $100 Waitlist Application Fee. 

Tuition Rate with Discounts
20% Sibling discount will be applies to the lowest tuition rate. There is an eligible 5% sibling discount for a 3rd child. Financial Assistance is available to qualified families. Alternative payment vouchers accepted. Tuition rates are subject to change.

Sample Schedule

Sample Classroom Schedule for Junior Preschool and Preschool Classrooms

Our Monday-Friday activities are consistent, however, times may vary slightly by age-group to allow for staggered outdoor playtime.

8:00 am - Center Opens/Free Choice Activities
9:00 am - Morning Snack
9:30 am - Circle Time
10:00 am - Small Group/Free Choice
10:30 am - Outdoor Play
11:00 am - Small Group Activities/Free Choice
12:00 pm - Lunch Time
12:45 pm - Story Time/Hygiene
1:00 pm - Quiet/Nap Time
2:30 pm - Snack Time
3:00 pm - Outdoor Play
3:30 pm - Circle Time
3:45 pm - Small Group/Free Choice
4:30 pm - Story/Library Time
5:00 pm - Center Closes

Children in the Infant Suite start off with “on-demand” schedules based on the child’s needs and start to mirror the above schedule as they approach 15 to 18 months old. 

Work At the YMCA

Bring Your Passion To Our Mission!

Our mission is to strengthen community. Join our team and make an impact on the lives of people in your community. 


Preschool Teachers & Preschool Assistant Teachers

Qualified preschool teachers and preschool assistant teachers (work on your credential!) needed at several locations. The teachers are part of a team which provides a safe, nurturing, and educational environment for all children enrolled in our program.

Preschool Teachers Minimum Qualifications

  • Minimum 21 years old.
  • Must be available Monday through Friday during program hours.
  • Must be qualified for Teacher Permit (12 ECE core, plus 16 GE).
  • 350+ days of 3+ hours per day within 4 years.

Preschool Assistant Teachers Minimum Qualifications

  • Minimum 18 years old.
  • Assistant Teacher Permit or higher.
  • 350+ days of 3+ hours per day within 4 years.
  • Available on-call Monday-Friday as needed.