Jobs Program

City and Country School was founded on the belief that children learn best when they are engaged in real-life situations that are important to them. Unique to C&C, the Jobs Program allows children to continue to learn by doing and plays a central role in the School’s integrated curriculum.

Each Middle and Upper School Group has a specific job to perform that helps the school community function smoothly. The children have ample opportunity to practice and expand their academic skills, including mathematics, reading and writing, while further developing leadership, critical thinking and problem-solving tools. Because they are performing real jobs that meet real needs, the children also develop a genuine sense of ownership and pride in their school community.

You can learn more about the XIIs Jobs Program in this recent video:

Anyone working with or watching these children soon realizes the deeper psychological aspect of this type of program. It gives a child a sense of dignity and responsibility to be entrusted with a job whose importance he fully recognizes...All his abilities are called into play. He learns self-control, patience, self-discipline. He accepts the need for drill and for special work in areas where he is weak, so he will be better able to serve his customers and his community.” 

—Jean Murray, former principal of C&C


The 8s operate the School Post Office, managing the daily communication needs within the School. Their tasks include organizing supplies, manufacturing stamps and selling attendance cards, setting price lists and collecting and delivering in-school mail every day. Through running the Post Office, the 8s practice a wide range of academic skills while engaging in cooperative problem solving and learning how a business operates within a school community.


The 9s run the School Supply Store, providing the School community with classroom and office supplies. The 9s order and track inventory, keep sales records and study business concepts such as supply and demand, comparative price shopping, consumer behavior and customer service. This parallels their study of general stores during our country’s westward expansion.


The 10s are the School's sign makers, creating picture and hand-lettered signs that identify rooms and give health and safety instructions throughout the buildings. Sign-making parallels a study of the beginnings of language and written communication, and precedes year-long research of medieval European society. The precise calculations required for sign-making draw on their work with fractions. In Science, children make their own parchment and inks.


The 11s run the School Print Shop, mastering the intricate workings of the School's two 1890s Chandler Price Treadle printing presses. The Group prints the School's Library and attendance cards, trip and Afterschool slips, as well as stationery and other items as needs arise in the community. Each year, the 11s create holiday cards and a literary magazine. Inspired by their work in the Print Shop, the children examine the revolutionary invention of the printing press and its contribution to modern society.


The 12s work with the School's four-year-olds. This is an ideal partnership, as both Groups benefit from the special and lasting relationship that builds over the year. The 12s work with the 4s in their classroom, guiding them with their work, as well as on the Roof-top playground. They also escort and connect them with their grown-ups each day at dismissal. Two highlights of the year include the winter play that the 12s create for the 4s, as well as the storybooks that each 12 writes and illustrates at year-end.


The 13s produce the school newspaper, using computer, word processing and graphic capabilities. Children take on the role of editors, reporters, writers, layout designers and salespeople, while studying the history of newspapers and the impact of journalism on society in American history. The newspaper also provides C&C's oldest children with a venue for recalling School memories, and helps to develop the "writer's voice" each child will carry into his or her new High School community.
The Jobs Program provides a context for essential hands-on learning. In addition to allowing children to put their academic skills into meaningful practice, it helps them to develop a solid respect for the full spectrum of roles within a community and gives them a confidence based on real work experience. The Jobs Program teaches children to be responsible to themselves, their Group, the School…and society. As the backbone of our Middle and Upper School programs, the School's founder, Caroline Pratt believed it is what sets C&C children apart from their peers in the high school setting.

Currents, a newsletter on C&C practices and policies, discusses the Jobs Program in greater depth. Read it here


City and Country School

146 W 13th Street New York, NY 10011
Phone: 212.242.7802