ILLNESS



We take every precaution to maintain the wellness of each student who attends our program. The first step taken is to require that children have had a recent physical exam and all the necessary immunization shots. Staff members have immediate contact with children when they enter the school in order to detect any noticeable health conditions. Staff members are required to take annual training in infectious disease control and universal precautions for the transmission of diseases. In addition, students and staff alike are required to wash their hands consistently throughout the day in order to prevent the spread of germs.

Even with all the precautions that are taken, viruses and other illnesses will still exist at school. If a child contracts a communicable disease, the school will post a note at the front entrance. The note will state what illness has been contracted; list some of the symptoms, and the approximate incubation period.

If a child has a known medical condition (asthma, allergies, diabetes, etc.), parents are asked to note it on the proper place on the enrollment form. Teachers should also be notified of the steps to take if a problem occurs while the child is at school.

If a child has any one of the following conditions, the school requires that the child not be at school:

  1. Contagious disease, not including a cold
  2. Fever of 100 degrees or more during the past 24 hours
  3. Vomiting or diarrhea within the last 24 hours
  4. Draining sores or burns
  5. A rash, until diagnosed and determined to be non-contagious
  6. Accident requiring medical attention
  7. Any condition that prevents the child from comfortably participating in program activities or that results in greater care for the child than what staff can provide without compromising the health and safety of other children

If a child exhibits any of these conditions while at school, the child’s parents will be notified to come and remove their child from the school until the above conditions no longer apply. While waiting to be picked up, the child may rest in a quiet area in order to minimize exposure to the rest of their class.

Whenever a child is to be given any medicine, including over-the-counter medicine, a parent must complete a Medication Authorization Form. Teachers may not give any type of medication unless this form is completed. Parents should request the form, complete it, and give it & the medicine DIRECTLY to the staff member. The medicine must be in its original container, the label specifying dosage and the child’s name.

Beyond the medical health of our students, their physical safety is also looked after. The school staff is trained in First Aid and CPR. First Aid kits are present in each of the classrooms, and the dining area. If an accident should occur, a staff member will administer simple first aid. In the event of a more serious injury, an emergency vehicle will be called, and the child will be taken to the doctor or hospital designated in the enrollment forms. A parent, or if necessary, an emergency contact, will be contacted immediately thereafter. After any injury is treated, an accident report will be written up to explain what happened and what treatment was performed. Parents will receive a copy of the report.


BITING POLICY



A child biting is one of the most common and most difficult behaviors in group childcare. It can occur without warning, is difficult to defend against, and provokes strong emotional responses in the biter, the victim, the parents, and the caregivers involved.

For many children, the biting stage is just a passing problem. Children try it out as a way to get what they want from another child. They are in the process of learning what is socially acceptable and what is not. They discover that biting is a sure-fire way to cause the other child to drop what they are holding so the biter can pick it up. However, they experience the disapproval of the adults nearby and eventually learn other ways of gaining possession of objects or expressing difficult feelings.

For other children, biting is a persistent and chronic problem. They may bite for a variety of reasons: teething, frustration, boredom, inadequate language skills, stress or change in the environment, feeling threatened or to feel a sense of power.

No matter what the cause, biting in a group situation causes strong feelings in all involved. It does help, however, to be aware of the potential problem before it happens, and to form a plan of action if it does occur. The following plan of action will be used when biting occurs in any of our rooms.

When biting occurs:

For the biter:
1. The biter is immediately removed with no emotion, using words such as “biting is not okay, it hurts”.

Avoid any immediate response that reinforces the biting or calls attention to the biter. The caring attention is focused on the victim.

  • The biter is talked to on a level that the child can understand. “I can see that you want that truck, but I can’t let you hurt him. We don’t put our teeth on people.”
  • Redirect the child. Time out may be necessary
  • Parents will be given a written accident report and a copy, which a parent has signed, will be placed in the child’s file. Information about the incident will be provided to staff on a need to know basis. Parents will NOT be given the name of other children involved.

For the victim:

  1. Separate the victim from the biter.
  2. Comfort the child.
  3. Administer first aid
  4. Parents will be given a written accident report and a copy, which a parent has signed, will be placed in the child’s file. Information about the incident will be provided to staff on a need to know basis. Parents will NOT be given the name of other children involved.

If biting continues:

  1. Involved staff will meet with the Director on a routine basis for advice, support, and strategy planning.
  2. Chart every occurrence, including attempted bites, and indicate location, time, participants, behaviors, staff present, and circumstances.
  3. Let all parents know that there is a problem and the procedures that will be followed to deal with it.
  4. “Shadow” children who indicate a tendency to bite:
  5. Head off biting situations before they occur.
  6. Teach non-biting responses to situations & reinforce appropriate behavior.
  7. Adapt the program to better fit the individual child’s needs.
  8. “Shadow” children who tend to be bitten:
  9. Head off biting situations.
  10. Teach responses to potential biting situations: “No” or “Don’t hurt me!”
  11. Work together as partners with the parents of both biting children and frequent victims to keep all informed and develop a joint strategy for change.
  12. Hold a conference with the parents of the biting child to develop a written plan of action. Schedule follow-up meetings or telephone conversations as needed.
  13. Consider early transition of a child “stuck” in a biting behavior pattern for a change of environment, if developmentally appropriate.
  14. Prepare the parents of the biting child for the possibility that the child may be removed from the school and help them to make contingency plans.
  15. If it is deemed in the best interest of the child, center, and other children, terminate the child from school enrollment for the duration of the biting stage. Written warning will be given to the parents before this action will be taken.

Sequence of Biting Occurrences:

  1. The first time a child bites the parent will be notified.
  2. The second biting occurrence the child will be sent home with a warning and a request for a parent conference.
  3. For the third biting occurrence the child will be sent home with a warning that the child will be discharged with another biting occurrence. The parent must prepare to make alternate arrangements for childcare.
  4. The child will be discharged from the program while the child is in the biting phase.

The school has also developed a series of procedures to follow in the event of a fire, natural disaster or other catastrophes. Staff members receive training on these policies at orientation and at other times during the year. Anyone wishing to view these policies may obtain a copy of them. If the school should ever need to be evacuated, the children would be escorted to the appropriate evacuation sites. The evacuation site list will be distributed to current families.


TRANSPORTATION DURING EMERGENCY SITUATIONS



In the event of a medical emergency, appropriate emergency personnel will be called for transportation to the preferred hospital indicated on the child’s Medical Form. Emergency evacuations will follow specific outlined plans according to the situation type. Transportation will be provided by contact with parents.
Please note: Field Trips & Non-Center Activities are not part of our program. Transportation is not be provided to or from our program.


UNAUTHORIZED PERSONS ENTERING THE SCHOOL



The door is always kept shut . Authorized visitors and community partners will be welcomed in the school at the discretion of the regular staff on site.

Unauthorized visitors will not be allowed to visit the school. The On Site Supervisor will be responsible for addressing this situation, however, all staff members & parents/guardians are requested to inform the On Site Supervisor when a visitor is on the premises, including the outdoor area.

The On Site Supervisor will explain to the unauthorized person that the school is responsible for the safety and welfare of the children and that only authorized persons are allowed in the school and/or on its grounds. The On Site Supervisor will invite the visitor to visit the school at a more suitable time.

Should the On Site Supervisor or his/her designee determine that it is appropriate to allow an unauthorized person to be in school and/or on its grounds, then that person will supervise and monitor the unauthorized person by accompanying him/her during his/her stay.

The On Site Supervisor may ask the unauthorized person to leave the premises immediately. If the unauthorized person does not comply with the request, the senior staff member will ask a second time, and if the request is not complied with, the senior staff member will call the police for assistance.


PROCEDURES FOR INTOXICATED OR SUBSTANCE-IMPAIRED INDIVIDUALS.



While decisions must be made on a case-by-case basis, our first step approach is to offer those who appear to be impaired to telephone someone else to provide transportation home for the child (and the parent, if willing.) If staff identifies a safety issue: If the parent does leave with the child, and staff have reason to believe that the parent was substance-impaired staff must act in their role as mandatory reporters and file a child abuse report in addition to calling the police.


WEAPONS AND WEAPON LOOK-ALIKES



Peace and peaceful resolutions are at the core of character development in the Montessori philosophy. It is seen as the responsibility of the school to provide a safe environment that promotes peace and peaceful resolutions so that our children may develop a culture of respect for themselves and others. Therefore, we do not allow weapons of any sort on the school grounds. This includes weapons, toy weapons or any other object, Halloween costumes, or books that suggest violence in any way.