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         Little Einsteins Preschool Academy LLC  Parent Handbook

 

                                         The below information is subject to change as necessary.

                                       A Christian values and early education facility.                                                                                                               

           We incorporate Biblical principles and Christ's teachings while encouraging child                                                     

                                         creativity, independence, and academics.                                                             

                      We facilitate learning by providing a positive, reinforced and                                               

            structured environment for children of all learning capacities and potential.

 

                     Partnerships between teachers and parents are key to a successful academic career.

                                                  

                                                                                   

                                                                                               Our Goal

 

 Our goal at Little Einsteins Preschool Academy is to supply children with an environment that promotes learning, compassion, self-help, and love for everyone.  We believe that children are a gift from God and should experience and hear about the love of God through Christ.  We believe children should be gently guided into a spiritual understanding of God's love through both example and teaching of the Bible.  It is extremely important to us that all families involved in this program understand that we are not perfect and do not expect them to be perfect.  Our desire is that a partnership is developed between us and each parent and child that becomes involved with our preschool.  We want to promote learning and understanding, kindness and good stewardship, love for your fellow man and compassion.  In teaching your child these Biblical principles, we hope to exemplify Christ and help partnership with you in growing well rounded adults.

                                                                                  Introduction

Little Einsteins Preschool and Little Einsteins Preschool Academy (often referred to as LEP and LEPA) are Christian education facilities.  We reserve the right to incorporate fundamental Christian values into stories and any educational materials.  We reserve the right to state the pledge of allegiance in its original form on a regular basis as part of our daily routines.  We reserve the right to teach, explain and present the true stories of the Bible to children in a developmentally responsible way. We will teach basic life skills in a way that is socially acceptable and kind to others.

The following information has been compiled in a way to help you better understand our program and to familiarize you with licensing expectations of this facility and parental expectations of our facility.  This information is here to help you understand the practices of LEP/LEPA and its policies for parents, teachers, and children.  To ensure your understanding of the expectations, you must read, fully understand, and comply with all written material and information while your child is a part of the facility. A signature page and other forms are considered legal and binding documents, and these items must be completed before furthering the application process.  I welcome all questions concerning the materials in this handbook or on future issues.  An open communication policy and partnership is particularly important to us, and we pray that families will abide by and promote this idea to have a successful experience here at LEP and LEPA.

                                                                             Hours of Operation

LEP and LEPA have set hours for operation.  These hours are Monday through Friday from 7:00 am until 5:30 at the 221 Nixon location (LEP) and 6:00pm at the Cherry St. Academy (LEPA).  Additional paid, extended hours can be provided with advance notice and understanding with administration.  Family needs for drop off and pick up at both facilities will be discussed at the interview process either by phone or in person.  We require a two-week notice for change of drop off or pick up once an established time is set during interview process.  We reserve the right to terminate enrollment if drop-off and pick up times are handled in an undisclosed manner or if these times are abused in any way. We reserve the right to suggest a change in hours if these times conflict with schedules, routines, daily personal life or if issues arise.  Children will be allowed to arrive and depart on a different schedule than was originally determined only with prior approval by the preschool administration.  If an emergency arises, it is the parent’s responsibility to contact the preschool in a timely manner and to secure an alternate for pick up. It is strongly suggested that all persons allowed to pick up your child be listed prior to any emergency as state law will not allow pick up from persons not listed.  If an emergency arises and pickup is hindered, parents are responsible for any late pay for teachers who remain with the child at school, without exception.  Tardiness due to personal errands is not considered an emergency.  Should late departure occur after 5:30 at LEP or 6:00 at LEPA, additional payment (fee) will be required to be paid in full to the teacher providing extended care prior to child’s admittance into the facility the following operational days.  This fee is $1 per child for every minute after 5:30 (LEP) or 6:00pm (LEPA).  This fee is only negotiable if the teacher agrees to waive the fee, or another payment method is agreed on by the teacher such as an app for payments.  If this procedure is neglected, abused, or refused, we reserve the right to terminate the enrollment for the child.

 

 

                                                      Visitation Policy And Enrollment Requirements

Parents may obtain information about LEP/LEPA in a variety of ways.  When parents call requesting specific information about enrollment to the facility, they are directed to this website and encouraged to read over all parts there in, and to fill out the application on the site.  They may send in the completed child application via email or by sending in a picture of the completed application to the facility phone number.  If their application is selected, they will receive an interview over the phone in which information regarding the parents’ needs is listed on a wait list form.  Applications are free and must be submitted to be reviewed for any openings at either location.  Once a position opens, these wait list forms (or applications) are sorted through in a variety of ways to find the best fit for the position that is open for a new enrollee.   Parents that are chosen are then called in for a “walk through” of the facility, and an explanation of what the center has to offer. Once an agreement is made to start the child at LEP or LEPA, the parent receives a parent packet with required forms to begin the enrollment process.  Parents pay a registration fee that covers all paperwork and forms and holds the child’s enrollment position until the child’s start date. Parents will be instructed to fully read and understand this on-line handbook as well as the website.  A form of acknowledgement will provide acknowledgment of a legal understanding of our facility.  All paperwork will need to be filled out and turned in prior to the start date so that the information can be checked over to see if the forms are correct.  Parents will have 30 days post enrollment to obtain official copies of a physical for their child if one cannot be obtained prior to enrollment.

                                                                           Extreme Needs

While most issues for care are handled with parental assistance and well thought out measures by staff and administrators, there are cases in which the facility will have limitations. When the needs of a child are severe or out of the range of capability for the staffing, administration reserves the right to dismiss the child.  If administration considers the liabilities of having the child on premises grievous, dismissal may be immediate.  Instances include, but are not limited to, a child’s endangerment of themselves or classmates, a child with extreme medical demands that staff or administration cannot meet, or a child that is a “flight risk” (constantly runs away).  In these instances, parents will be contacted after first notice of symptoms or issues and a decision will be given to the parents of the child.

                                                           Parent Responsibilities and Involvement

Parents are encouraged to participate whenever possible.  Please feel free to join your child during outdoor activities or classroom time with prior notice.  We welcome parents during meals as well but please let us know so that we can prepare areas for added persons.  Parents are also encouraged to accompany field trips though these are limited, and transportation must be provided by parents.  Activities such as Easter Egg Hunts and Christmas Programs will be held, and parents are strongly encouraged to attend.  This information and upcoming events where parental involvement is requested will be posted on the information boards at both facilities.  Parents must note days of closings, activities and classroom curriculum experiences and attend to those dates as necessary. 

Parents are expected to keep current on tuition payments and other fees that are assessed throughout the year.  Failure to keep current will cause enrollment to be revoked.

 

Emergency information updates such as phone numbers, addresses and medical needs are the responsibility of the parent.  Parents should also notify the facility if custody changes occur or safety measures such as a restraining order are put in place.  LEP and LEPA reserve the right to dismiss a child if a parent fails to keep information current or if issues arise that put any staff member, child, or parent in danger.  Also, neglect in updating all information pertaining to children could cause issues in an emergency and promote harm to others here at the facility. Please be responsible with any crucial information.

Parents are responsible for reserving time should parent teacher conferences become necessary. Teachers perform two individualized developmental assessments per year for all children.  While most of these assessments are to help the facility promote learning strategies for each individual child, it is necessary to sometimes go over concerns with parents.

It is also the responsibility of the parent to help in a timely manner with behavior issues.  Children who are having trouble or acting out will be encouraged and redirected according to the developmental ability of that child.  Still, it is often necessary for strategies to be put in place and for parents to discipline at home to partnership with LEP/LEPA to encourage good behavior.  We expect complete compliance with this area of socially accepted behavior. Should parents be unavailable when needed or negligent in aiding, Administration will terminate the child’s enrollment.  Both facilities reserve the right to do this on the spot with no notice.  Please keep in mind all staff have been trained and will help one another to ensure each child is given time to work out issues both behavioral and emotional within the classroom setting. We will put standards and evaluations in place to help every child no matter the issue.  We will work with parents and children to provide a positive outcome.  However, failure by the parents to assist us in these measures will not be tolerated. We are also aware that not every child can thrive in all classroom settings, and it may be deemed, after evaluations, antidotal notes regarding behavior of a specific child, and staff interventions, that LEP/LEPA are not suitable to a child's needs.  When this occurs, staff will assist in every way possible to find alternative care. Parents are expected to understand that our concern for their child and how he or she best learns will be at the heart of all decisions of this type.

Parents are expected to provide nutritious, child appropriate and developmentally appropriate lunches for children as well as two snacks per day.

Lunch bags should be labeled, and beverages should be included as well as cold packs if perishable foods are sent from home.  Beverages for children should be water, milk/milk substitutes or 100% fruit juices.  All snacks and lunches should be provided and labeled with the child’s name. We suggest that "cold service foods" are provided i.e., peanut butter sandwiches, fruit cups, fresh fruits and vegetables and these items should be portioned or diced for easy ingestion without the threat of choking. Parents who forget or pack insufficient food items for their child will be called to bring needed items to school and are expected to do so in a timely manner as to not cause the child stress over meal situations.  LEPA and its staff have food at the facility and can assist in emergency situations, but it is the parent's sole responsibility for adequate provisions.   Parents who have a hard time providing can speak to administration for advice and assistance on periodic or governmental meal assistance programs.

Parents are expected to ensure their child has adequate clothing, sunscreen and or bug repellant according to seasonal changes and weather. In addition, LEP/LEPA requires each child to have a change of clothing should a spill or accident occur.  It is up to the parent to change out this clothing as weather needs change or the child grows.  LEP/LEPA keeps a small supply of children’s clothing for emergency purposes but may not be the appropriate size therefore parents will need to meet those needs. Parents are also required to provide adequate clothing if potty training is being done.

Parents are required to keep up with hygiene needs such as diaper supplies and other training garments.  LEP/LEPA will do our best to let parents know when supplies are low, but it is ultimately the parent’s responsibility for contacting the facility or speaking with teachers on a timely basis to ensure children’s toileting needs are met.

                                                            Forms and Emergency Information

It is especially important that all forms and needed paperwork are returned in a timely manner.  Parents are expected to put truthful, accurate information on these forms and to make changes necessary on these forms should alternate numbers, names or places occur.  Accurate information also ensures that during emergencies, each child can receive care in a beneficial timely manner and that necessary contacts can be made quickly. LEP/LEPA will routinely have parents update forms to stay on top of current information.

                                                                     Tuition and Yearly Fees

Parents are responsible for keeping tuition current, as stated before.  Tuition is due by 5:00 pm, Friday, prior to the week of service.  Exceptions are made only with prior approval by the administration.  Parents are obligated to pay tuition, fees and other amounts in the manner provided herein without exception, refund, reduction, mitigation, defense, counterclaim, deduction or set off for any reason, and such payment shall be made regardless of circumstances, including, but not limited to, vacations, personal days, absences, illnesses, holidays, teacher workdays, closings (scheduled or unscheduled), or lack of attendance for any reason. Tuition ensures enrollment space for the child and holds that child’s position at the facility.  We accept payment on a weekly basis as well as every two weeks or in advance monthly.  We have several ways for payment processing, and these can be confirmed and agreed on during the initial interview.  We try to assist parents should any need arise with tuition schedules, but I ask that you inform me of needs, issues, or changes in tuition payments prior to the week of service.  Late charges of $10 may be assessed with late payments.

Please keep in mind that these are small, privately owned businesses and there are many expenses that arise.  I try to keep my expenses low and therefore keep tuition as low as possible for parents.  Please be professional and prompt with all payments so that the facility runs smoothly.

Registration and other necessary fees may be required throughout the year to help LEP/LEPA function.  These fees will be announced in advance and kept to a minimum.  Parents will receive 30 days’ notice for any increase in tuition or additional fees.   A Registration fee will be assessed each January, and parents will be given notice for timeframes in which these payments will need to be made. Parents of children who will be leaving for kindergarten in the fall are still responsible for making registration fee payments as these children will have been enrolled for more than 6 months of the year.

 

 

 

                Tuition scale 2023 (subject to change and will be discussed during interview process)

 

Infant- Two-year-old:    $220.00 per week    Full time                                  Two -5 year old: $200

 

                                      $135.00 per three-day part time                                $105.oo per two-day part time

 

                                  Yearly Registration fee: Full time $125                                 Part time $100

There may be instances where, with multiple children in the household, rates be reduced for siblings.

                                                                        Withdrawal

It may be necessary because of job loss, job transfer or another occurrence to be faced with the need to withdraw your child. If this happens, we ask that you let the administration know as soon as possible.  We understand that sometimes life happenings cause such issues, and we will help in whatever way we can. A two-week notice is expected, and an official withdrawal date is necessary. Please keep this in mind and be honest with the staff and administration so that others on the wait list can be contacted and given the opportunity to enroll.

                                                             Weather and Related Closings

LEP will have weather closings from time to time.  We will use local news agencies, school system maneuvers and other means to determine should a closing be necessary. Parents will be notified via text or phone call as soon as any decision is made regarding closings or reopening after in climate weather.  Please feel free to call or text if unsure.  We reserve the right to close or open in contrast or in agreement with local school closings.  These decisions will be made with concerns regarding facility hazards/liabilities such as ice or snow on walkways/driveway or lack of electricity at the forefront of our decision-making process. We also reserve the right to make closing decisions based on hazards concerning staffing and State regulations concerning child/staff ratios.

Please understand, should local weather stations expect in climate weather, LEP/LEPA administrators will consider parent work locations, availability for quick pick up and liability issues for long term stay at the facility as reason to close.  We cannot predict the accuracy of weather stations and therefore cannot predict if hazardous conditions will indeed occur.  We will simply do our best to make decisions based on our understanding of the upcoming weather.  Once weather issues have occurred, we will reassess the availability of staffing and facility issues, listen to further weather predictions and use our best judgement on reopening or continuing availability for care.                                                                                                                         

                                                                               Safety

Children are expected to arrive with an adult and will only be released to an adult (18 years or older) that is listed on the application section where parents provide pick up individuals.  Please do not send older siblings in to pick up your preschooler. Parents are required to have full attention from teachers before leaving with children or dropping them off at school. All people over 18 who are listed on the application form will have permission to take children from our care.  Please let all people know that, should that person not commonly pick up your child, identification will be required.  With staff changes, child promotions into other classrooms and staff leaving times, we ask that all individuals picking up have patience and respect for this process.  If at any time a parent has reason to remove a person from the list, this must be taken care of in person with administrators. Email, phone call or text  will not be allowable to name someone different to escort your child from the facility, change pick up list individuals or instruct an alternate.                                                       

Parents who show hostility or impairment will be reported to proper authorities and restricted as necessary from leaving with the child.  We ask that parents be calm and professional especially when children are witnessing any behaviors.  We will not tolerate belligerence, hostility, sarcastic remarks, or erratic behavior in front of children or directed at any staff or family member. These acts will be cause for immediate dismissal and possible reporting to police.

We at LEP/LEPA try extremely hard to keep the environment child appropriate and to limit injuries at our facility.  We ask that you keep a close watch on your child as you come into preschool and as you leave.  Parents are responsible for their child’s wellbeing and safety as long as the parent is on the facility premises. We ask that parents do not distract the teacher for long periods of time or keep their attention from children either in the classroom or outdoors as this could cause injuries to occur.

Should your child get injured at the facility, we will contact you via text or call.  We are all trained in first aid and can control most emergencies.  However, should the need arise for medical assistance beyond our scope of training, we will contact parents to pick up their child and seek medical attention.  If extreme, life-threatening emergencies occur, medical authorities will be contacted and will transport your child to the needed place of care per parent request on the Emergency Information form.  In most cases, children have bumps and bruises.  We will do our best to relay information about injuries in a professional and timely manner. Should your child receive a questionable injury at home, we may need information on these injuries to continue to watch over and keep your child safe.  Please inform the staff or administration anytime a major injury or illness occurs away from LEP/LEPA, even if the child seems unharmed.  This will allow us to watch for further signs of injury or illness.  It is the parents’ responsibility to communicate with staff about issues such as these.

Children who are injured, have nose bleeds or other issues where bleeding may occur will be separated until bleeding is under control.  State mandated processes for blood clean up and exposure will be followed as will all aspects of keeping the injured or bleeding child and others safe.  If a child comes in contact with another child’s blood, parents will be notified.

Staff at both facilities are required to take training in a multitude of situations.  First Aid, CPR, Child Development and Shaken Baby Syndrome are just a few.  Studies show that children as old as five years of age can suffer abuse from being shaken.  Please know that teachers here take your child’s safety seriously.  We have a ‘team’ approach to disciple, tantrums, and erratic behavior from the child.  We use each other in intense situations and allow each other time away should situations get hectic. Parents who are experiencing issues of stress at home are encouraged to let us know and we will help however possible to help them maintain control even while at home.

                                                                     

 

   Appropriate Care

Parents are responsible for adequate care before and after leaving preschool.  Children need to be fed, clothed, and have their needs met prior to entering. If your child has soiled their diaper on the way to LEP/LEPA, it is the parent’s responsibility to let the teacher know or to change the child prior to leaving.  Also, the state of NC has regulations and requirements for licensed facilities regarding reporting neglect and abuse and we take these regulations very seriously.  Negligence in proper clothing, footwear, feeding and hygiene will be reported as required by state laws. 

                                                                      Arrivals and Departures

As stated above, parents are responsible for bringing their child in and securing acknowledgment from the staff that they are aware of the child’s presence.  Please do not simply push your child in the door without making sure staff are aware as this could lead to further issues.  Parents need to speak with teachers in the class each morning to make sure there are no additional requirements from the parent and to make sure their child has all that they need for a positive day at preschool.  We encourage parents to say goodbye and to be quick with departure so that the child does not become upset.

Please know children will be redirected and encouraged to engage in activities should they become upset as the parent drops them off. We will do all we can to assure a positive start to each day.  We ask that parents not prolong or promote excessive crying and to encourage their child to leave with a smile.  This process will show the child that the parent is confident in who is caring for them in their absence and ease will eventually become a happy habitual routine.

As stated before, only adults will be allowed to pick up each child.  Please understand this is for your child’s safety and to limit liability for the facility.  Parents should notify the staff as soon as possible if they see there will be a delay in picking up, a change in who will pick up the child or any other issues that may occur.  Fees may be applied if the parent is late as discussed previously.

                                                                  Community Help Resources

 

Child Welfare/DSS         704-862-7500

 

Gaston Co Health Department   704-853-5000

 

NC Division of Child Development   919-814-6300

 

                                                                             Other Resources

 

Food Nutrition Program                                 Smart Start                   Child Care Resources

 

                                                                         Meals and Snacks

 

 Meal and snack schedules are as follows:

Morning snack 8:30- 9:00 ish                   Depending on arrival.

Lunch 11:00 11:30 ish   This is based on classroom activities as well as other happenings.

Afternoon Snack 2:45-3:15  

Recommended snacks are as follows:

Goldfish, Graham crackers, animal crackers (variety of crackers)

Dried and fresh fruits such as bananas, apples, raisins, applesauce, strawberries, and sliced melon

Diced vegetables such as cucumbers, carrots, broccoli

 

Any juice served as snack should be 100% fruit juices only.

Water will be available for snacks and mealtimes and throughout the day.

Parents of children under one year will provide formula or breast milk in labeled, dated bottles. Storage and refrigeration are limited so adequate cooling packs should be provided in lunch and bottle bags. Beverages for lunch should also be provided.

No infant bottles may be used after age of one per state requirements.  All beverages for children over one year must be placed in toddler style sippy cups.

                                                                                     Illnesses

Children who are ill will not be permitted to attend preschool.  Illnesses that will cause the child to be sent home or to remain at home include but are not limited to:

Rashes of unknown nature

Mucus/drainage that hinders a child’s breathing or normal activities.

Temperature of 101 or above-or lower if accompanied by other symptoms

Severe coughs that make the child uncomfortable or unable to participate in activities

Excessive loose stools

Vomiting

Lethargy or abnormal fussiness or crying that may signal pain or discomfort

Inflamed eye or eyes

Unusual appetite change- ie, lack of eating or gagging etc.

There may also be occasions where the public health facilitator may make additional requests or restrictions such as during the COVID 19 outbreak.  These additional practices will be explained and monitored by state or local licensing agents and will therefore be out of our hands where attendance and illness requirements are concerned.  Please understand that all such measures will be taken to provide the best care for your child and those in childcare with them.

Parents will be notified if any of these symptoms or others that we know are not common in each individual child.  In any case where the child is unable to participate because of health reasons, we will notify parents.  Sick children will be separated from others to limit the spread of germs. Parents are expected to be prompt in picking up any child with an illness.  Children will not be permitted to return to school until 24 hours after last case of vomiting or loose bm or until best practices for the center are carried out regarding the case.  Children will need to be fever free without the use of fever reducing medication for 24 hours before returning.  Skin rashes and other conditions need to be seen by a doctor and permission to return must be given by the physician and or medication applied or ingested 24 hours prior to returning to ensure spreading of contagious illness will not occur.

The state of NC has regulations that both facilities must follow for all childhood illnesses both common and uncommon.  We will follow these regulations closely and we reserve the right to use our judgement on any illness before allowing children to return.

Staff may at times be asked to wear disposable masks when illnesses seem to be spreading in their classroom.  This is to limit staff absences and to help benefit the overall ability to provide care at the daycare.  Please do not assume staff are ill due to the presence of masks as this is a common need to keep staff safe from illnesses.

Please remember that we are here to keep all children safe and to limit illness the best of our ability.  Please do not send children to school if you suspect an illness that may be contagious.  Also, if your child has been sick over the weekend or during closings, please let us know.  Our knowledge will help us to look for signs in other children and to promote good decision making should others become ill.

                                                                                  Medication

Our facilities do not administer or prepare medications for children in our care.  Only lifesaving medications for ongoing medical care will be administered.  Proper approval, packaging and paperwork must be given, signed, and followed through with in these life-saving situations.  If children need an antibiotic for an illness, we encourage parents to ask doctors for medications that can be given twice daily or that family members can come in during medication administration needs to give doses.  If that cannot be done, we advise parents to keep the children in their care or family care until medication is no longer needed.  We do this because of the level of liability concerning oral medications and state coursework and other requirements for centers that administer medications.

Topical medications for diaper creams may be sent but forms describing the exact medication, amount, and procedure will need to be filled out before administered.  Any diaper cream item will be put under lock and key for storage and the form will be signed by parent.

Do not under any circumstance leave medication, lip balm, diaper ointment/cream or other item in diaper bags, book bags or totes that are left at the facility.  These items pose a health risk should children get into them and cause violations for our center.  Any items such as these will be thrown away should we find them in personal bags.

                                                                      Pictures and Videos

LEP/LEPA uses a Facebook page and other social media to promote the facility and staff may post group texts often for parents to be able to experience some of the fun that takes place here.  We promise never to violate any moral rights of any child or family. No video or picture will be taken and used for any other reason than to promote positive learning processes at school through its website or family enjoyment.

                                                              Hand Washing and Sanitation

LEP/LEPA is governed by the Gaston County Health Dept to ensure that food prep, diapering, toileting, sanitation, and safety requirements are met. Since LEP is closely related to my private home, I take all communicable diseases and health standards very seriously. Proper protocol and precautions will be used. Many family members work at both locations so, once again, every precaution concerning cleanliness and illnesses will be followed.

Teachers will wash their hands with soap and water upon arrival. Hands will be washed prior to meals, snacks and after messy artwork and play.  Teachers will also wash their hands upon returning from outdoor play. Hands will also be washed after cleaning noses, coughing, or sneezing onto hands or when hands have been put in mouths. We will follow this procedure to the best of our ability. Sanitizer may be used in cases where running water and soap are not available, however, hands will be washed as soon as this is available.

There are requirements for diapering that will be followed closely.  Teachers and children’s hands will be washed after each diaper changes with soap and water. Diaper changing surfaces will be wiped down with soap and water solution then spritzed with a bleach water solution to kill germs.

Children will be helped and encouraged to wash their hands before and after each meal, when returning from outside play, after toileting, cleaning their nose or mouth, messy play or after encountering any bodily fluids.

Blood will be handled and disposed of according to “Blood Born Pathogens” process. Parents will be notified should their child encounter another child’s blood and proper paperwork will be filed.

Bathrooms are cleaned and disinfected several times throughout the day.  Toys are sprayed with sanitization solution daily and are first washed with soap and water if mouthed in any way. A cleaning schedule is in place and our facility is watched continually for any repairs or cleaning that may need to occur. Parents, please voice any concerns that they may see.

                                                                  Teachers, Substitutes and Aids

As required by State regulations services, each person involved with our facilities will have criminal background checks and be required to stay free of any criminal charges to maintain employment.  Teachers are also trained in CPR, first aid, SIDS (when applicable), bloodborne pathogens, developmental delays, shaken baby syndrome, behavioral guidance strategies, communication needs as well as other topics.  Training is done on an ongoing basis and expected for employment.

 

Teachers are evaluated yearly, and goals are set for each teacher to take training or further education. Each teacher is trained in how to communicate with both parent and child.  Parents are encouraged to speak to teachers about issues they may have with teaching styles, or classroom activities. If parents are not able to successfully communicate further needs or expectations with teachers, they are asked to speak to the director to solve issues.

                                                                     Infants, Toddlers and Twos

Children two and under have specific needs and we try to inspire them to participate in all activities if they are developmentally ready. We use the Creative Curriculum to promote cognitive development as well as physical and social development.  Language development is promoted through songs, flannel boards, books and interactive activities.  Self-help and social skills are seen throughout the day as they observe older children learning and playing. Our hope is that older children develop patience, forbearance, and a nurturing attitude to smaller children.  We hope that the smaller children, in turn, learn positive influence and classroom routines by observation.

                                                             Units of Study for 3-5-Year-Old Children

LEP/LEPA uses both Creative Curriculum and Mecklenburg Co. School’s Bright Beginnings Curriculum to teach and encourage literacy.  Children who are developmentally ready that are under three years of age will also be encouraged to listen in, sing along and experience these literacy activities. Our focus will be on helping children develop to their full potential and to be ready for kindergarten when the time comes.  We have specific units of study that will be incorporated into our literacy circle to help promote writing skills, letter recognition and phonics, one to one correspondence of counting and number recognition, social skills, community aspects and the environment.  There are ten units and our “school year” begins in August/September and extends until June.  There will be a separate more relaxed “summer schedule” where activities such as water day, show and tell, community involvement and social studies will be taught and experienced.  However, during the “school year” information forms will be sent out OR posted in the information box with activities to help parents and children better understand what is being taught during our units of study.

As stated before, assessments will be completed twice yearly to help teachers understand better the areas each child has mastered and the ones in which more help is needed.

We promote a “Montessori” approach to learning and try to give children choices during their “Center Time” to experience free play, bond with classmates and learn social skills to ready them for school. In many cases it may look like children are simply playing but much learning takes place during these free play (though structured and purposeful) activities. Seventy percent of school preparatory learning takes place during these times and self-help, independence, self-motivation, and social understanding are acquired.  Creativity and structure are also developed.

We try to be intentional and proactive in every aspect of our teaching and we encourage parents to take home and apply these learning strategies as well.

There are generally 4 planned and purposeful circle activities or “group times”.  During our morning circle, teachers will help in routine establishing activities.  Bible stories, songs and activities are usually focused heavily on the first group time as is a prayer for the day.  Literacy is the focus for the second “group time”.  Numbers, shapes, colors, or social issues are topics for the third group and occur right before naptime.  During the last group/circle, children have more child directed or interactive activities with the teacher’s guidance and/or science studies. Every aspect of circle or group time is done in a manner to promote school readiness, taking turns and other social skills.

                                                                    Outdoor Play Areas and Safety

We believe children need plenty of fresh air and sunshine with lots of room to move on a multitude of surfaces.  These types of settings and activities promote large and small muscle development and help the child to learn and explore the world around them. Studies show that promoting times of large motor and physical activity promotes concentration and focus during circle times.  We encourage and take every opportunity to go outside and allow children to MOVE!  A reasonable amount of “dirtiness” is expected when children’s creativity and energy collide with nature.  Parents must understand that a stress-free attitude and encouragement for exploration will be given at LEP/LEPA.  It is the parent’s responsibility to provide clothing that can be played in without worry or fuss. It is also sometimes necessary to use insect repellant and sunscreen for your child.  It is up to the parents to make sure these safeguards are in place when needed.  We will not apply sunscreen or repellant as these are considered “medication”.  Please apply items such as these prior to coming into the center. Appropriate shoes are also required for preschool play both outdoors and inside.  Flip flops and open toe sandals may be hard for children to run and play in on mulch areas without falling. Please consider the outdoor environments your child will use when dressing them during all seasons.

Children will be allowed to climb, slide, swing and balance on playground spaces and will be continually monitored for safety. Natural elements such as stumps, trees, rocks, bark, mulch, leaves, and sap are in these outdoor areas. There may also be insects, lizards, snakes, and small creatures.  As always, we will be as safe as possible with all of God’s creatures and creations, but we will include teachable moments with every part of nature or its encounters. Surfaces that encourage sensory explorations such as grass, bark textures and sand will be delved into by all ages.  Any skin allergies or medications for allergies need to be considered by parents before arrival at preschool.

On some occasions we can play on the driveway or patio outside of the classroom, weather permitting.  Precautions will always be in place to keep your child safe.  Please reinforce and encourage your child to follow all rules for unfenced areas to keep them safe even when you are here with them.

Always shut gates and doors when exiting the class or playground. Always use caution when pulling into the driveway as parents and children may be walking there.

                                                                     Naps and Nap Routines

Children will be provided with a personal, labeled cot for nap times.  Sheets will also be provided by both facilities.  Parents may want to provide a small blanket to help the child feel more relaxed and cozier for nap.  Naptime is generally between 12:30 and 2:30 and naptime preparation begins around 12:15. Children can sleep earlier if it is evident that they need to lay down earlier. Teachers remain close by during naps and often help coax smaller children to sleep by rubbing their back or hair.  Parents are expected to let staff know if there is a change in pick-up time and they are planning on coming during nap hours.  Parents may be instructed to come to the front door for pick up so as not to disturb children who are resting. Sheets and other bedding are washed weekly and often earlier if they become obviously soiled or if a child has become sick.  Such measures help reduce the spreading of germs and the reinfection of illnesses when the child returns from sick leave.

                                                 Scheduled/Non-Scheduled Closings and Absences

LEP/LEPA reserves the right to take the following holidays.  Tuition is due regardless of attendance by child or closing of the facility.

One week per year (summer break) 90 days notice will be given

3 days per year for emergency closing or training need

New Years Eve And New Years Day

Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, and an additional day (3 days for Winter Break/Christmas Break)

Friday before Easter and Monday after Easter Sunday (2 days for Spring Break)

Thanksgiving Day and Friday after Thanksgiving

Memorial Day

Fourth of July

Labor Day

LEP/LEPA reserves the right to decorate for Christian Holidays as it sees fit or feels inspired.                                                                                                  

                                                                  Emergency Situations

All staff at LEP/LEPA are trained in Emergency Procedures and documented processes are in place for all types of emergency needs.  If children need to be kept on site to be safe, we will group in the basement or downstairs classroom of the facility.  Should further evacuation be needed,  or if a neighborhood or area evacuation is needed, we will travel by whatever means necessary to the Walmart here in Belmont.  If the need is to evacuate the city, we will travel by whatever means necessary to the Walmart in Gastonia.

Parents will be contacted in any emergency and told where to meet.  Please know that in any crisis or national disaster, LEP staff will do everything in our power to keep children safe and emotionally healthy.

                                                                  Field Trips and Travel

LEP/LEPA will not transport any child during routine childcare hours, for any reason other than dire emergency except with parent knowledge and prior consent.  Should there be a need for evacuation, the facilities will use any means necessary to safely travel and care for the children.

We do not transport children for field trips.  Parents are required to provide transportation or secure alternate means of travel.

 

                                                                                 

                                                                   Guidance and Discipline

A Discipline policy is included in the Parent Packet.  This form shows allowable forms of discipline and explains measures that will never be taken for disciplinary purposes.  Should a need for outside assistance in behavior strategies arise, parents will be notified and expected to be part of the course of action from start to finish.  Failure of parents to help in discipline or behavior issues is instant cause for loss of childcare.  Children who are relentlessly disruptive, abusive of other children or teachers will be placed on a behavior modification plan in hopes of changing the behavior.  If the behavior cannot be limited or changed within a progressive time frame, parents will be asked to seek childcare that better meets the needs of the child.  We reserve the right to make decisions about disciplinary issues and to dismiss children who need more discipline assistance than we can provide at any time. Parents must understand that every measure, strategy, and form of guidance will be used to promote good behavior.  We will work with parents on resolving issues but in many cases, there may be a need for more advanced services and help to ensure the child receives care that furthers his or her overall learning and development.  We recognized each parent's right to discipline their child.  Parents who choose to take a Biblical approach in discipline and use spanking may do so off “daycare premises”.  We will talk, remind, and use phone calls to parents to help keep the child aware of parental disciplinary procedures should parents use spanking as a tool.  We will not participate in any way with the spanking process except in monitoring should abusive practices be seen.  All abuse cases will be carried out and overseen by state and law enforcement agencies.          

 

                                                                           Discrimination Policy

In accordance with federal law and US Department of Agriculture policy, this institution is prohibited from discriminating based on race, color, national origin, sex, age, or disability.  To file a complaint of discrimination, write USDA, Director, Office of Civil Rights, 1400 Independence Ave, SW Washington, DC 20251-9410 or call 800-795-3272

We uphold our religious beliefs of love and kindness while basing all decisions thereon by Biblical understanding.

                                                                    Reporting abuse or neglect

Any issues concerning child welfare or concerns with a childcare facility can be directed to the State of NC Department of Health and Human Services Division of Child Development.

Address: 2201 Mail Service Center Raleigh, NC 27699                   Phone: 800-859-0829

There are staff available that will help in reporting incidences or abuse and neglect in a facility or neighborhood.  Please feel free to contact these people for clarification of rules, explanation of concerns and or reporting.

 

                                                                        Good to Know Info

Children can bring a small soft toy and blanket for everyday use to keep in their cubby for naptime.  Should any item brought from home become a distraction for the class it will be placed in the office for parents to pick up.

Label the waistband or collar of all clothing.  It is also encouraged to put initials on all toys, books, or bedding sent from home.

We do not give screen time with technological devices or television during the “school year”.  Closely monitored “movie” day is sometimes used during summer program and during the week of Christmas for 3-year-old children and up. This time is 30 minutes or less during any occasion.

 

​We always desire to provide a Christ like attitude, and we want parents to feel welcome.  Please share any concerns or family issues if you need to.  We want to establish a strong partnership and lifelong friendship with all parents and children.  Allow us to pray for and with you.  Please consider keeping us in your prayers as well.

                                                             This is a tobacco free facility.

 

​Montessori practices refer to the belief that children learn in a more overall effective pattern by not just hearing, but through seeing, touching, experiencing and hands on exploration. 

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