1. What we offer?
Each 1-hour session consists of the following:
- Lesson (20-30 mins long). The coaches determine the curriculum based on each individual roster.
- Practice games and competitive play (paired up with other students)
- Individual coaching (giving individual feedback on their games, or homework)
From time to time, students also work on puzzles and exercises to sharpen their mental acuity and reinforce the lesson. The time is roughly split evenly between formal instruction and practicing what you learned. Most sessions are 1 hour long but advanced sessions can be longer.
2. When are the classes?
We are open to organizing a class anytime of the day:
- Morning as part of the school curriculum
- Lunchtime as an alternative option to recess time
- Afternoon as an after-school class on campus (most popular)
- Early evening at any after school centers
We try to coordinate chess right after school ends (based on facility availability and school preference). Class is generally once per week or can be multiple times per week at select sites.
3. Where are classes held?
Classes are held on campus, or at local after school enrichment sites. MOST schools have closed campus, so only students registered to that school may join the after-school program. At this time, many schools are also practicing a 'no parents on campus' covid policy.
4. What to bring?
Nothing! We provide all equipment: chess sets, boards, workbooks, and all related items.
5. What will my child learn?
The basic answer here is that we teach the game of chess, a healthy academic game designed to improve patience, planning and decision- making habits. Examining the board before moving is similar to evaluating your alternatives before making any life decision - so the game of chess is really about preparing for life itself! We also teach the value of losing and learning from your mistakes and we emphasize good sportsmanship and respect towards others.
6. How do you handle rewards?
We use a quantitative point system to reward learning and behavior. Students achieve different levels based on the points they earn and collect rewards, trophies, and medals. Details on Point system can be found HERE.
7. Is financial aid available?
Bay Area Chess offers financial aid to deserving families because we want to make our program available to everyone.
In order to qualify for financial aid and to offer financial aid on a uniform and unbiased basis, we ask parents to submit their proof for their child to participate in the free or reduced lunch program or provide an explanation of their situation of need.
8. Are coaches screened?
ALL of our coaches have clean background check reports and TB test report. We also, at this time in 2022, have a 100% vacinated staff. We only allow coaches near the kids after we get the reports back from the fingerprinting/live-scan, and after the coach candidates provide us with a negative TB test. Furthermore, we monitor the reports from DOJ and remove anyone with any kind of violation to the law.
Also, many of our lead coaches are Red Cross certified in adult and child CPR, first aid and AED.
Please look for the RedCross certification logo on the coaches' pages.
9. What is the ratio of Coach:Student for the after-school chess classes?
BAC's standard coach:student ratio is 1:12 or better. There will be rare occasions where we adjust this for optimal groupings, though we use it as a template for all staffing decisions.
10. Can I learn more about your Online Options?
You can learn more about our ONLINE (and other) activities here: Online | Bay Area Chess
Late Pick-up Policy:
In the past we had a few parents who picked up their child late at the end of the class. Per our policy, as we cannot just leave the children at school sites by themselves (most school offices will not hold children from enrichment programs). Coaches need to supervise them at all times, so they could be late or force a cancellation at their next class by being delayed.
The following late pick-up policy is enforced at all schools:
0-10 mins: no extra charge
10-20 mins: up to $10 extra charge
20-30 mins: $20 extra charge
30-60 mins: $45 extra charge
These fees go directly to the coach themselves for their time, BAC does not profit in any way from late-fees.
After-School Cancellation and Refund Policy:
100% refund available before the second class;
50% refund OR BAC Weekend Club or Camp credits for the remaining balance (less the fee of 2 chess classes) - before the third class;
NO refund or credit after the third class;
NO refund or credit for missed classes;
NO refund or credit for early leave.
PRO-RATED Refunds: Pro-rated refunds requests are considered on a case-by-case basis and are not guaranteed. Generally, players that are NEW to the game cannot be inserted into a term that has already started as that skill level will no longer be taught.
Please note: BAC may charge one chess class value administrative fee for ANY pro-rated refund that IS allowed.
BAC offers 10% siblings discount applicable to the second and all following children from one family.
To receive such discount, all siblings must be registered in one single transaction.