Mission statement and Parent Handbook

Mission Statement
Art Barn’s mission is to provide an energized creative space for children to spend their days. Small class size will allow each child’s individuality to shine. We will provide learning experiences that encourage investigation and exploration. Children from the age of 20 months to 5 years will benefit from constant exposure and experience with Art and Nature. They will grow and develop to into creative, independent, thinkers and makers.

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Parent Handbook

Early Education and Care (EEC ) is the agency that oversees the early education and care and after school services for families in Massachusetts. As the agency that licenses child care, EEC has quality standards for all licensed programs to ensure high educational value, as well as health and safety. Having a license means that I have demonstrated that I meet the standards outlined in the EEC regulations.

To obtain your own copy of EEC Family Child Care Regulations, you may download them from the EEC web site at: http://www.mass.gov/Eeoe/docs/EEC/regs_policies/20090122_606_cmr.pdf

For information about my regulatory compliance history, you may contact our local EEC regional office, whose contact information is as follows:

Mass. Dept. of Early Education & Care

1250 Hancock Street

Suite 120-S

Quincy, MA 02169

Enrollment/Capacity

My current licensed capacity is 6, which is posted on my license. At any one time, I can only care for the number of children that I’ve been licensed for, which may include my own children, depending on their ages. In addition, EEC regulations state that I cannot care for more than three (3) children under the age of two (2) without an assistant, with one of those children being at least 15 months old and walking unassisted. If you have concerns or questions about the number of children in my care, please feel free to discuss them with me.

Arrival and Departure

Whoever drops off and/or picks up your child must sign the child in/out. Accountability is important. Pick up time can be chaotic, so I ask that you help to make the transition as smooth as possible.

I do not regularly charge a late fee, but ask that you are considerate of my time and you childs’ need for routine.  If you are running late please let me know.  If you are routinely more than 15 minutes late then we will revisit this policy and determine an appropriate fee.

Snow Day Closure

As Art Barn is located on my property it is not likely that I will need to close due to snow. In extreme cases I will notify you by phone if it is necessary to close or delay opening.

Alternate pick-up/ release of child

Any adult 18 or over that is authorized to pick up your child must be noted on your child’s original application or an additional form must be filled out and placed in your child’s file. Upon pick up, proper photo identification must be presented before your child will be released with anyone other than you. In the event of an emergency, you may call ahead to notify me of an alternate person not previously noted in your child’s file; a photo ID will still be necessary.

Attendance and payment policy

Art Barn is open from September thru June Monday thru Friday with the exception of major holidays ( Columbus day, Thanksgiving, Christmas, New years, Memorial day).  Tuition is due for those holidays as well as for other days that you may opt not to attend.  Payment is due on the first of the month.  A 25 dollar late fee will be applied after the 10th of the month.

Child Guidance

When it comes to interactions and the guiding of children’s behavior, the goal of all Educators is to maximize the growth and development of children, as well as keep them safe. Children’s behavior will be guided by setting clear limits or rules for the children to follow.  If unacceptable behavior is displayed then I will talk with the child about why that particular behavior is not allowed. If unacceptable behavior continues then I will redirect that child to another activity away from the problem.  Once again I will explain why the behavior is unacceptable. If behavior continues and redirecting to another activity isn’t working then I will use a “Time Out” away from all activities.  I will explain to the child why they are in a time out and how we can resolve

Sick Policy

I can care for mildly ill children in my program; however there will be times when you will need to keep your children out of the program due to illness. If your child has a fever, diarrhea or vomiting, you should keep them out of care until those symptoms have resolved for 24 hours.

Change of Clothes

Each child will need to have a complete extra change of clothes in his/her cubby every day. This should include a top, bottom, socks, and undergarment (all appropriate to the season and size.) In the winter they will also need snow gear. As only you know your child, you should feel free to leave more than one if you feel it would be appropriate.

Food

An important part of this program is to teach children the importance of eating healthy foods in relation to a healthy body. I will provide healthy morning and afternoon snacks.  I ask that you provide your children with a healthy lunch everyday. I will be happy to provide sample menus on request.

If there are severe allergies in the program I will notify other parents to ask that they do not bring those items into the program.

Toilet Training

If/When you feel your child is ready, I will do whatever possible to assist you and your child with potty training. You will need to leave at least two extra complete outfits for your child, in case of accidents.

Birthdays

I would like to make your child’s birthday a special day while they are here. Each child on their birthday will have an extra special day/event. Please feel free to collaborate with me about your child’s birthday.

Photos

I hope to take a lot of pictures, to document the children’s’ fun and growth. Each parent will need to sign a photo release. If you do not want your child’s photo taken, please let me know that you are NOT signing the form and I will make sure to keep your child out of the photos.

Permission to Transport

When signing your child up there will be a form that gives me permission to transport your child. All parents will be notified on fieldtrips beyond the immediate neighborhood.

Plan for Meeting Potential Emergencies

EEC regulations require that I have a plan for meeting potential emergencies that may occur either during child care hours or at any time if they may affect the operation of the program.

In the event of an evacuation emergency, I will contact the local authorities to determine whether or not to evacuate the program, or to remain sheltered at the program.

The escape routes from each floor of the licensed child care space are the side door and the front door.

In the event that a child should go missing from the program, I will call the police, notify the parent, and notify EEC.

Should the program need to be evacuated in the case of a fire, natural disaster, loss of power, heat or hot water, or any other emergency situation, we will meet at an alternate location. The designated meeting place(s) outside of the program for emergencies is the main house.

If the program needs to be evacuated, I will notify all parents, as well as the appropriate authorities (fire, police, etc.) and EEC. My method of doing that is by cell phone, e-mail, and the neighbor’s phone.

I will ensure that no child has been left at the program after an evacuation by taking attendance and a head count.

Children’s Records

I will keep and maintain an individual written record for every child I have in care. These records include the information that parents complete at enrollment, as well as progress reports, incident reports and other documentation regarding your child’s care. Records are updated at least annually, but may be updated as frequently as is needed.

As a parent, you have access to the record that I maintain for your child, and you have the right to add information or to request that information in your child’s record be changed or deleted. You also have a right to receive a copy of your child’s record.

Please let me know about any questions you have regarding your child’s record.

Maintaining a Safe Environment

EEC has a number of licensing standards related to safety in a Family Child Care Home. Most of these standards outline common safety precautions such as making dangerous materials inaccessible to children, covering outlets, having a first aid kit, practicing evacuation drills, gating stairs, windows, or heating elements, posting emergency numbers, and maintaining a clean, hazard-free indoor space. Also, the outdoor space must be safe and hazard free and there should be no access to a busy street, water, construction materials, rusty or broken play materials, debris, glass, or peeling paint.

Supervision

Supervision is critical to keeping children safe. I and any assistants in my program will appropriately supervise children in order to ensure their health and safety at all times. I will use good judgment and consider several factors in determining the appropriate level of supervision for children including age, developmental needs, behavioral characteristics, the nature of activities and the space we are using, as well as the number of caregivers present at any given time. If you have any questions about how I supervise the children in my program, feel free to ask me.

Safe Sleep

Supervision of children is equally important during the times that a child is sleeping at the program, particularly when that child is an infant. EEC has very specific regulations around safe sleep practices. All infants are placed on their backs to sleep, unless a child’s physician orders otherwise (such an order must be given to me in writing). I check on children every 15 minutes during naptime. If your child is less than six months old, I will directly supervise them during naptime for the first six weeks they are in care. For more information regarding Safe Sleep, please feel free to review the ‘Family Child Care Policies’ section of www.eec.state.ma.us.

Oral Health

Proper oral health begins at home, and I will be reinforcing good oral health practices with your child each day. If your child is in care for more than 4 hours per day, or he/she will be receiving at least one meal while in care, I am required to assist your child with tooth brushing at the program.

I ask that you send your child in with a toothbrush and toothpaste.  The State requires that they be replaced every three months.

Curriculum and Progress Reports

All Family Child Care Educators must carry out a routine that is flexible and responds to the needs and interests of children in care. The routine must include things such as; meeting the physical needs of children in care, sixty minutes of physical activity every day, child-initiated and Educator-initiated activities and daily outdoor play, weather permitting. Additionally, the Educator must develop a curriculum that engages children in developmentally appropriate activities by planning specific learning experiences. The curriculum must include things such as; learning self-help skills that foster independence, opportunities to gain problem solving and decision making competencies and leadership skills and opportunities to learn about proper nutrition, good health and personal safety. I am also responsible for providing an environment that promotes cultural, social and individual diversity.

In addition, progress reports must be completed periodically for all children in care. For infants and children with identified special needs, I will be completing progress reports every three months. For toddlers and preschoolers, those reports are completed every six months, and school age children will have a yearly progress report completed for them.

I will be sharing your child’s progress reports with you, as well as offering an opportunity to meet and discuss your child’s progress. Feel free to ask me about curriculum and progress reports and how they are implemented in my program.

the problem together.  “Time Outs” will be used sparingly and only will last one minute per age of child.

Medication Administration

EEC has regulations requiring Educators to have a policy regarding the administration of medication to children in care. As a licensed Family Child Care Educator, I am also required to take medication administration training. The following guidelines are common to all programs that are licensed by EEC:

Prescription Medication

• Prescription medication must be brought to the program in its original container and include the child’s name, the name of the medication, the dosage, the number of times per day and the number of days the medication is to be administered. This prescription label will be accepted as the written authorization of the physician.

• The program will not administer any medication contrary to the directions on the label unless so authorized by written order of the child’s physician.

• The parent must fill out the Authorization for Medication Form before the medication can be administered.

Non-prescription Medication

• The program needs written parental authorization to administer oral non-prescription medication.

The parent must fill out the Authorization for Medication form, which allows the Educator to administer the non-prescription medication. The statement must be renewed on a weekly basis.

• In the case of unanticipated non-prescription medication that is used to treat mild symptoms (e.g., acetaminophen, ibuprofen), the program must still have written parental authorization, however it must be reviewed annually.

• The Educator will make every attempt to contact the parent prior to the child receiving the nonprescription medication unless the child needs medication urgently or when contacting the parent will delay appropriate care unreasonably.

Topical Ointments and Sprays

• Topical ointments and sprays such as petroleum jelly, sunscreen, diaper rash ointment and insect repellant will be administered to the child with written parental permission. The signed statement from the parent will be valid for one year and include a list of topical non-prescription medication.

• When topical ointments and sprays are applied to wounds, rashes, or broken skin, the Educator will follow the written procedure for non-prescription medication which includes the written order of the physician, which is valid for a year, and the Authorization for Medication form signed by the parent.

All Medications

• The first dose must be administered by the parent at home in case of an allergic reaction.

• All medications must be given to the Educator directly by the parent.

• All medications will be stored out of the reach of children. All medications that are considered controlled substances must be locked and kept out of reach of children.

• The program will maintain a written record of the administration of any medication (excluding topical ointments and sprays applied to unbroken skin) which will include the child’s name, the time and date of each administration, the dose, and the name of the person administering the medication. This completed record will become part of the child’s file.

• All unused medication will be returned to the parent if possible, or disposed of in accordance with Department of Public Health guidelines.

Lead Poisoning Prevention

All Family Child Care Educators are required by EEC to provide parents with information regarding the risks of Lead Poisoning. The following are some facts that all parents should know about lead and lead poisoning:

• Lead poisoning is caused by swallowing or breathing lead. Lead is poison when it gets into the

body.

• Lead can stay in the body for a long time. Young children absorb lead more easily than adults.

The harm done by lead may never go away. Lead in the body can:

o Hurt the brain, kidneys, and nervous system

o Slow down growth and development

o Make it hard to learn

o Damage hearing and speech

o Cause behavior problems

• Most of the lead poisoning in Massachusetts comes from lead paint dust in older homes. Many homes built before 1978 have lead paint on the inside and outside of the building.

• When old paint peels and cracks, it creates lead paint chips and lead dust. Lead dust also comes from opening and closing old windows.

• Lead dust lands on the floor. Lead gets into children’s bodies when they put their hands and toys in their mouths. Children can also breathe in lead dust. Children between the ages of 9 months and 6 years are most at risk.

• Important: Home repairs and renovations also create lead dust.

• Most children who have lead poisoning do not look or act sick. A lead test is the only way to know if your child has lead poisoning. Ask your doctor to test your child for lead. Some children may have:

o Upset stomach

o Trouble eating or sleeping

o Headache

o Trouble paying attention

As mentioned earlier, if your child is over nine (9) months of age, you will need to provide documentation to me that your child has been screened for lead poisoning. Most children will be screened annually until either age three (3) or four (4), depending on where the child lives.

I am required to disclose to you if I am aware of any known sources of lead in my home. Information regarding known sources of lead in my home is as follows: there is none, it is a newly constructed building.

For more information on lead poisoning, you can visit http://www.mass.gov/dph/clppp or call the Childhood Lead Poisoning Prevention Program at (800) 532-9571.

Parent Notifications

I will notify you of certain information about my family child care home, in accordance to EEC regulations.

These notifications include, but are not limited to:

• an injury to your child;

• allegations of abuse or neglect regarding your child;

• if another educator will be caring for your child;

• the administering of first aid to your child;

• whenever a communicable disease has been identified in the program;

• children being taken off the child care premises;

• the existence of firearms in my home;

• if there are any changes in my household composition,

• prior to any pets being introduced into the program;

• whenever special problems or significant developments arise

Mandated Reporting

As a licensed Educator in Massachusetts, I must operate my program in a way that protects children from abuse and neglect. As such, I am a mandated reporter (under M.G.L. c.119 s51A) and must make a report to the Department of Children and Families (DCF) whenever I have reasonable cause to believe a child in the program is suffering from a serious physical or emotional injury resulting from abuse inflicted upon the child, or from neglect, no matter where the abuse or neglect may have occurred or by whom it was inflicted.

What I Need From You

The first day your child attends child care, I need a copy of the Art Barn Contract and Enrollment forms. Without these completed documents, which must be updated annually, I cannot care for your child. The reason for this is so I have all the important information and phone numbers I will need in order to provide the best possible care for your child.

Medical Information

Medical information about your child must be given to me within one (1) month from the day your child begins care. There are three (3) pieces of medical information I will need:

1. A statement from a physician or health care professional that says that your child received a physical exam within the past year;

2. Evidence that your child has been immunized as recommended by the Department of Public

Health;

3. If your child is nine (9) months of age or older, a statement from a physician or health care professional which says that your child has been screened for lead poisoning.

Please note: Your child’s immunization record must be updated and given to me in accordance with the Department of Public Health’s immunization schedule. Also, your child’s lead screening report must be updated as required by Department of Public Health Regulations. This report must also be given to me. If your child is school age, I can accept a written statement that the required information is on file with the child’s school.

Communications and Staying Involved

Feel free to visit, not just at pick up and drop off time, but at a variety of times during your child’s day—it’s your right as a parent. Please also make sure to follow-up with me if you have any questions about the program or your child’s care.

I look forward to working with your family and providing a great experience for your child(ren)!

Rose Coyle ( Miss Rose)

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One thought on “Mission statement and Parent Handbook

  1. hello! my name is Esta Carnahan. We are Weymouth residents and I am an art teacher at Quincy high school . I also went to mass art and studied education with a specialty in ceramics. Since moving to Weymouth our new passion has been landscaping and gardening in our backyard. Your place sounds amazing! When is your next open house? I know this is a lot In advance but would you have space for a two-year-old not this coming fall but the next fall 2016? looking for a full day from 8 to 3 but wondering if you need to sign up for every day or you can choose how many days? Probably looking for 3-5 days a week. Do you have a waiting list and can I put my son name in it? Thanks! Take care/Esta

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