U.S. Chess Federation

Official Affiliate

San Jose


  • California State Leader in K-12 Scholastic Chess Instruction

  • Certified Coaches are Affiliates of the U.S. Chess Federation

  • SJ Chess Club Teams Compete in Officially Rated Tournaments

  • SJ Chess Club Classes are Open to All Ages & Chess Skill Levels

  • Courses for New/Beginner-Intermediate-Advanced/Competitive

  • Currently Hosting Chess Clubs in Over 55 Bay Area School Sites 

  • SJ Chess Club is the #1 Rated Online Chess School in the World





In-School CHESS CLUBS In-Action!

To play, press and hold the enter key. To stop, release the enter key.

sj chess club class flyer

Who?  Why?  When?  What?

We were formed on the campus of San Jose State University in 1990 by members/competitors of the SJSU Chess Club team.  The pilot program sent College Students to teach in-school chess classes on San Jose Unified School District & San Jose Diocese campuses in exchange for college credit.  Shortly after the San Jose Chess Club was officially formed and incorporated as a 501(C)3 non-profit organization. 

We were a success and quickly spread into Cupertino Union, Los Gatos Union, Campbell Union, Saratoga Union, Santa Clara Unified, Sunnyvale, Mountain View Wishman, Moreland, Berryessa, and Los Altos School Districts.  Our expansion was rapid throughout Santa Clara County and now hosting K-12 Chess Clubs before/during/after-school or at lunchtime in well over 100 Bay Area school locations, in all 9 Bay Area counties, and are still growing rapidly throughout California and the entire West Coast.    
We are now the #1 online chess school in the world!  The Covid-19 pandemic closed down our live/in-person Chess Clubs for a full calendar year, forcing us to direct our attention to remote learning options, virtual chess classes, and online tournaments. 
We are in a soft re-opening but due to pandemic most of our chess classes are still online and 100% virtually.  We offer chess instruction plans for asynchronous school site learning, in-person lessons for small groups, at-home learning pods, and can custom private lessons.  As California continues to ease restrictions and students begin to return to campuses we are planning more in-person classes in the near future.
We're devoted to promoting the merits of chess amongst children by using stories, analogies, and catchy songs to make the game of chess exciting.  This unique learning experience not only teaches children to play chess but also prepares them for life by enhancing the thought process.  Children participating in the Chess Club develop critical thinking and problem-solving skills, have better concentration and mental discipline and gain confidence.
We have been on TV, newspapers, and print for our award-winning chess curriculum.  We teach an academic style of chess that has proven to raise math and reading scores as well as boost social skills with the assistance of the 1st-Move program.  Over the past 30 years, we have taught tens of thousands of chess-kids of all ages & skill levels, sending countless individuals and school teams to compete in tournaments and other rated events.
We have the best USCF(United States Chess Federation) chess coaches available and have what it takes to teach all the way to master level, we make chess as fun as possible and give students the tools they will need to progress on their own.  No organization can make a chess-expert just meeting once a week, practicing makes progress, so we emphasize the elements of FUN in learning while still being competitive, honorable, and we are very proud to excite our students about chess.
SJ Chess Club Instructor Levels:
  • Bronze: 1600 - 1900  
  • Silver: 1900 - 2100 
  • Gold: 2100 - 2400    
  • Platinum: 2400 and above
Student Levels:
  • No chess knowledge needed
  • This level covers the rules of chess PLUS essential beginning strategies
  • Your child should know how the pieces move, how to Castle, and checkmate
  • This level covers powerful chess tactics and builds the skills necessary to successfully win games
  • Your child should understand multiple tactics and checkmate strategies
  • This level covers advanced tactics, planning and strategic thinking, leading to confidence in crafting a plan from any position.


our entire teaching staff


is now fully vaccinated





What makes your program different from other chess companies?

Our Certified Chess Coaches have countless years of PRO experience.

USCF & FIDE Instructor rating levels are:

Bronze: 1400 - 1700  Silver: 1700 - 2000 

Gold: 2000 - 2300     Platinum: 2300 - 2600 


Are the Chess Teachers' background checked?

Yes indeed. Our entire staff is background checked by the US Dept of Justice.  We are all TB tested with clear results, and in-person instructors must currently test clear for COVID-19.  All staff members must agree to mandatory Corona Virus vaccination when available to the critical mass.


Is your Chess school insured?

Absolutely, we possess liability, and after school insurance worth over 4.5 million dollars as well as additional insured coverages.

What are the age range and skill level for Chess classes?

Our range is open to all interested K-12 students, for levels beginner through intermediate, advanced, and even competitive.