Family Handbook

We are very excited that you are considering Manchester to educate and love your child.  It is our goal to partner with the family in building strong foundations in young children’s lives.  The goal of our program is for children to enter kindergarten, with a love for learning and a passion to explore and appreciate their natural surroundings.  We believe this learning begins with infants and continues through preschool.

Below you will find a parent handbook and specific information about our vision, core values, and curriculum. updated-parent-handbook. This packet will need to be filled out and turned in at least two weeks prior to child’s attendance along with a current copy of your child’s immunization records.

We encourage you to make an appointment to tour our school and meet our staff.

Mission

Manchester’s mission is to encourage each unique child to have a passion for learning through creative experiences that allow children to learn at their own pace, in their natural environment, while also teaching the importance of caring for their environment.

Staff

Our staff is held to very high expectations.  Many teachers have bachelor’s or master’s degrees, others are working towards degrees, and have many years experience working with young children.  All staff meet licensing requirements for State of Kansas Department of Health and Environment.

Security

Our facility will remain locked from the outside at all times.  Each family will have a code that will allow them access into the building.  There is also a doorbell to buzz for entry.

Licensing

Manchester follows all State of Kansas Department of Health and Environment licensing regulations.  A copy of the licensing regulations are available on the KDHE website.  Any violations that Manchester receives will be posted on the bulletin board outside of the main office.  Terms of license are:

Licensed capacity: 62

Licensed to serve:  12 weeks-6 years

Hours of operation: 7:00-5:30 pm

Month of operation:  Year round

Chain of Command

Christina Turner, Owner/Director & Classroom Teacher

Hours of Operation

All day school is available year round for infants-pre-K, Monday-Friday, 7:00 am to 5:30 pm.

We will be closed in observance of the following holidays:

  • New Years Eve and New Year’s Day
  • Memorial Day
  • Independence Day
  • Labor Day
  • Thanksgiving Day and the Friday after Thanksgiving
  • Christmas Eve and Christmas Day

Holidays that fall on a weekend, will be observed the Friday before or the Monday after.  Manchester will also be closed one day in the spring and one day in the fall, for parent/teacher conferences.  Tuition includes days that the school is closed.

Admissions

Children may be considered a student at our school at 12 weeks old.  Parents must complete and return the following at least two weeks before the child’s first day:

  1. School Application for Enrollment
  2. Health Assessment
  3. Immunization Form
  4. Authorized Pick up Form
  5. Emergency Care Form
  6. Automatic Bank Draft
  7. Admissions Agreement

Waiting List:

If a classroom is full, you will have the option to put your child on a waiting list.  We will call as soon as a spot comes available.  Please note that a non-refundable fee of $50 is expected to hold a spot for your child on the waiting list.

Tuition

Tuition Rates:

12 weeks to 1 year $210 per week

1 year to 2 1/2 years $190 per week

2 1/2 years to 4 years $180 per week

4 years to 6 years $180 per week

*These rates include a healthy breakfast, hormone free milk, and a healthy snack. Your child has the option of bringing a sack lunch from home or you can choose the meal plan for $4 per meal.  Meal plan includes fresh fruits and vegetables (mostly organic) and no highly-processed foods. No juice will be served.  Families are welcome to change their plan, as needed.

Additional Fees:

$145 Enrollment Fee is non-refundable and does not apply to tuition. This fee is for supplies, technology expense, and school publications. For returning students, (starting year 2, the fee is $100)

*Additional fees for school pictures, field trips, special events, etc will be paid upon event.

Tuition can be paid monthly or bi-weekly. Tuition is always pre-paid on Fridays.  Tuition is due the first and third Friday, for the following weeks.  Tuition is paid though automatic bank draft for all families.  Parents may choose to make payments bi-weekly, or monthly.  Statements will be provided on request.

Tuition is a flat rate, and must be paid whether or not the child is in attendance.

A $10 daily late fee will apply to any delinquent tuition payments.  After two days of delinquency, the family may lose their enrollment status.  Special situations can be discussed with the Director/Owner.  Families who lose their spot due to delinquent payment can re-enroll when the bill is paid in full, depending on available space.  Classroom spots will not be held.  The director has the right to not re-enroll families who have a pattern for delinquency.

 

Arrival/Departure

Arrival time is an important time for your child. Please bring your child to the teacher in your child’s classroom. The person bringing the child to the center should sign the child in on the sign-in sheet in the child’s classroom and put all belongings in the child’s cubby. The time of arrival and the drop-off person’s initials must be written on the sign in sheet. Never drop your child off at the door or leave them in a classroom if there is no staff person present. If there is no staff person present, please check with the office immediately.

When you come to pick up your child, make a point of saying good-bye to the adult in charge. Check your child’s cubby daily for messages, artwork or written work. Then sign your child out. If the class is on the playground, you will still need to sign your child out on the clipboard in their classroom. Please remember all persons picking up a child from Manchester should have identification with them in case the supervising adult has not previously met them. Manchester teachers and staff are trained to never release a child to an unidentified or unauthorized person. Please keep your child with you at all times when leaving the classroom and the building.

A late fee is charged for children who are not picked up by 5:30 pm.  Late charge will be $5 per minute, per child.  If your child is not picked up by 5:30 pm, the staff will make efforts to contact any or all authorized escorts.  If staff is unsuccessful at contacting an authorized escort, the law enforcement authorities will be contacted for assistance.  If late pick up occurs more than three times, enrollment may be terminated.

If it becomes necessary for an unauthorized person to pick up your child, we need to receive your approval in the form of a note or phone call from you stating that person’s name and telephone number. This person will need to sign a special form in order to take your child from the premises. If the individual is unknown to Manchester staff, we will need to see some form of personal identification. We can only release your child to those persons you have authorized.

 

Withdrawal

A two-weeks notice is required when withdrawing your child from our program.  If two weeks is not given, you will still be charged for 2 weeks tuition.

 

Children with Special Needs

Our curriculum and teaching style is appropriate for all children.   The owner/director has a master’s degree in early childhood special education and all teachers are expected to teach all children, regardless of ability or disability.  We will work closely with the parents to ensure that we are helping reach goals and milestones, in a most appropriate environment.  Our goal is to include all children in all aspects of our program, making accommodations, as needed.  It is asked that parents submit staff a current IFSP or IEP.  TARC Infant/Toddler staff and School district staff are always welcome in our school for visits with the children they serve.  Our staff and director would like to be a part of IFSP and IEP meetings, when possible.

Our staff will keep record of development for all children in our program.  If a teacher has concerns, they will bring it to the parent’s attention.  Our staff holds early intervention to a high importance, and will not hesitate to discuss a possible referral for a screening through TARC Infant/Toddler or your local school district.  Screenings are never arranged without parents consent.

 

CURRICULUM

The Reggio Approach to learning is a complex way of approaching early childhood education. It differs from many other early childhood philosophies and curriculums in that it is not prescriptive. There is no book detailing the specifics of how to work in the Reggio way. At its core, it is more of a mindset or a set of values that give direction to teaching and how a school will take shape. This approach began in Reggio Emilia, Italy.  It started with a collection of engaged teachers eager to create schools that recognize and honor the rights of young children and who build from children’s natural curiosity to create an atmosphere of wonder and discovery. Their way of doing school has steadily evolved over the last forty plus years as a result of constant collaboration, research and exchange of ideas. The end goal is not some form of college prep, which is inappropriate for this age, but rather to create life long learners and explorers.  The goal is more focused on facilitating students’ development into thoughtful and engaged citizens who are able to reason with empathy, rather than being focused on memorization.

At the foundation of our work is an acknowledgment of the rights of children. Every publication lists a different collection of rights, but it boils down to an acknowledgment that children from birth are capable, curious individuals deserving of the same rights and respect we expect for ourselves. This shows itself in a lot of different ways in our school on a day-to-day basis, but most of all in our intention to include children in choices or decisions that affect them. We believe they have the right to have a voice and be heard. There are certainly times when the teacher takes the lead and makes decisions that are different from what the class might decide, but in those cases, it is our job to communicate our reasoning to the children so they can understand, even if they do not agree.

Traditional models of education stress the teacher as the center of the classroom and the bearer of knowledge. The Reggio approach is different. A teacher does not stand in front of the class to “teach” a topic that he/she feels the children need or want to learn about.  This kind of instruction can result in successful memorization of facts and information, but we seek a more empowering education that builds from children’s natural curiosity and desire to construct an understanding of the world and their place in it. We acknowledge children as the protagonists of their learning. When children have a question about how something works and why, it is not our role to have all of the answers. We see the teacher’s role as a guide or facilitator. We accept that children will not always find the objectively right answer the first time they are faced with a problem, so we aim to facilitate their thinking around the question. We encourage them to draw from their past experiences, the class’ communal creativity and what they discovered in our studies to construct an answer that satisfies their wonderings and is consistent with their current understanding of how the world works. If their answer is not “right,” they will eventually be confronted with things in their lives that do not gel with the understanding they have constructed and forces them to reevaluate and construct a new understanding that gives space for the new reality they have encountered. This process is not unique to childhood. It is the dialectics of life. We are in a continual state of trying to wrap our minds around this world and how to live in it. We live according to the answers we have created and evolve deeper understandings as we are faced with new problems.

While there are times when our teachers offer direct instruction, the best, most natural teaching tool for young children is free exploration, or play. Free exploration does not mean directionless craziness, but it is important for teachers to give space so children have time to enter their own processes, individual and social. It is the times when children get immersed in their inner dialogue and forget for a moment about anything outside of their play that they really start to access and develop their true sense of self. When most people think about their favorite memory of childhood, it rarely involves a parent or an adult. It is these free times when children start to take ownership of themselves and their experience in the world that makes children feel most vibrant and alive. Having this foundation of self and social awareness developed through play has been proven to result in a more successful ability to autonomously navigate the complexities of adulthood.

It is important for us to create the environment, both physical and social, for this free exploration to happen safely and successfully. The indoor and outdoor environments serve as a third teacher, inspiring and facilitating new explorations, while reflecting current and past interests. The environment will be organized in a way to “encourage encounters, communication and relationships.” When an environment is designed and maintained well enough to truly function as a third teacher, it gives teachers ability to focus on individual or small group work and the space to observe and document the life of the classroom. The teachers should always be close enough to redirect when needed or to jump right in and progress the play with a question, a material provocation, or by folding into the dramatic play. The teacher should also be really listening to their play to find the interests and themes that are being explored amongst the children for possible use later in the classroom. Teachers then take what they have learned from their observations and participation in free play and create projects around them. This is often referred to as following the child’s interests, but the specific interests are important mainly because that is where the child’s thinking is. We continually work to make our teaching meet children where they are thinking, instead of trying to drag their thinking to our teaching. The aim is to give children an opportunity to dig deeper and develop a greater understanding around their curiosities and, in doing so, establish a love for the process of learning.

As teachers facilitate children researching their interests, they enter their own research of the child or group’s learning process. This is what Reggio refers to as children and teachers as researchers entering into co-inquiry, or negotiated curriculum. Usually it starts with a question asked or discovery made by the children, which ignites their curiosity. The teachers formulate the next step, asking more questions as needed, and then will have a group discussion aimed at giving the children an opportunity to discover or create something new or deeper surrounding the original idea. The teachers then reflect on the project and what was discovered and chart the next step accordingly. This continues until the curiosity has been satisfied or a more dominant interest has captivated the hearts and minds in the classroom. Other times, teachers will start the negotiation process based on either a theme they are seeing in the children’s play, an issue in the classroom they need the children to address or on something they think will strike the class’ curiosity. Once they throw it out to the class during reflection circle, or during a project, the ball is back in their court and the negotiations continue.

When we approach developing a new idea into a project, we search for opportunities for the children to use the 100 languages of children to construct a fuller understanding of an idea than would be possible with only verbal language. Reggio educators refer to the 100 languages as “the different ways children (human beings) represent, communicate and express their thinking in different media and symbolic systems; languages, therefore, are the many fonts or geneses of knowledge.” This idea was in part a response to what they saw in Italy as mainstream education being obsessed with just two languages: reading and writing. The 100 languages “came out of political discussion in Italy in the 1970s about the reasons for and consequences of privileging these two languages from the many available to children. The theory relativizes these two, not devaluing them but situating then among a much wider range of languages, all of which have an important role to playing, learning, and life.”(Vecchi)

We will often start an exploration verbally, by bringing the idea to the class’ reflection circle. The teacher may share what she heard during their play or bring up something that happened during a previous day’s exploration. This initial conversation helps the teachers get a sense for where the class’ current thinking around an idea is. This is also an important time for children to hear from and question each other. Once this initial information gathering has taken place, the teachers will search for the best way to provoke their understanding further. They may first use markers or pens to get children expressing their ideas in another way. Sometimes photographs or other materials that represent the interest may be presented on the table to give the children context and inspiration for the project. Depending on what came from that experience, the next step may be to explore through song, blocks or dramatic play. As a project develops, teachers will use reflection circles as a way to check back in with the students about what they have been doing and what they are currently thinking about the subject. This also helps teachers from getting on their own track headed away from the children’s thinking. Projects rarely follow a completely linear trajectory, because the teachers try to stay true to the children’s input, while keeping the class pointed in an intentional direction. It is important for us to stay flexible while we go through this process.

To develop students’ fluency in the 100 languages, educators in Reggio, Italy created the position of atelierista. The atelierista “has an artistic but not educational background; she is more an artist than a teacher, but works closely with teachers in schools, both engaged with the processes of learning. She will introduce a variety of mediums and tools for the children to explore and create with.   The atelierista will develop her own way of supporting our classroom’s explorations. She will work in all of our classrooms, one week at a time, supporting ongoing explorations with material provocations. She will meet with teachers to get a sense of what ideas are being explored before she comes in. They will collaborate on a plan for how she can spend that week developing the existing interests. Over time, her work promotes children’s learning the grammar of material languages, so they can grow fluent enough to autonomously access and communicate through the materials in their environment.

To support the work within the 100 languages, we have developed mini-ateliers in the toddler through pre-kindergarten rooms. These are spaces are filled with many open-ended materials accessible for the students and teachers as they pursue an exploration. We define open-ended as materials that may have been made for a specific purpose, but are flexible enough to take on various forms or meanings depending on the intentions of the user. This includes traditional “art” materials such as paints and clay, but also natural materials (stone, pine cones, wood, and feathers), fabrics and found or recycled objects.

The key to teachers tracking and reflecting on their teaching and their students’ learning is documentation. The most visible forms of documentation are the panels and pictures around the school that detail explorations and stories of learning. These panels are really the result of compiling, reflecting and editing the many forms of documentation that are used in our classrooms. We document the life of the classroom by taking photographs and videos, writing down children’s conversations and ideas, collecting children’s drawings and project work and by doing our own written reflections on the classroom. Teachers compile all these traces of learning and experience and use them as a tool for assessment and communication. Teachers go through these traces looking for moments or evidence of individual growth and development, patterns in classroom exploration and for areas of need or support. Teachers will use various forms of documentation to paint a picture of each child’s experience and progress in each developmental area category. Documentation of the class’ explorations and development are done primarily through panels displayed in the classrooms and hallways of Manchester.

 

DIVERSITY AND OBSERVANCE OF HOLIDAYS

Manchester hopes to have families who represent a variety of cultures, faiths, and personal beliefs. We feel that our children benefit every day from opportunities to interact with children and adults from different countries and cultures and we welcome the sharing of activities and customs with your child’s classroom. Because we feel it is the parents’ responsibility to determine the extent that religion should play in their children’s lives, we do not celebrate holidays at Manchester. However, throughout the year, classrooms may learn about various holidays around the world and may study them in relation to projects they are working on.

 

BIRTHDAY CELEBRATIONS

Birthdays are very special days at Manchester!  We ask that parents provide a birthday cake to share with the school in the piazza.  We are an egg-free school, due to having a child with a life-threatening allergy.  Families are invited to attend the classroom party.  Classmates will prepare and plan celebrations.

*Unless all children in the classroom will be invited, please DO NOT bring party invitations for outside celebrations to Manchester. Children’s feelings are easily hurt if they are not invited. We ask that you be sensitive to the feelings of all children.

 

MEALS

Tuition fees automatically include breakfast, hormone-free milk and water, and an afternoon snack for all full-day classrooms.  We do not serve juice and we are egg-free.   Your child is welcome to bring a sack lunch from home or you have the option of a healthy lunch provided by the school for $4 per meal.  Your family will need to choose one or the other at time of enrollment, sack lunch or school lunch.  School lunch will be prepared by a chef using fresh fruits and vegetables, including many organic, and will avoid highly-processed foods.  Menus will be emailed monthly.  Your family does have the right to change their meal decision on a month-to-month basis.

Please observe the scheduled serving times for your child’s class. If your child will arrive after the serving time in the classroom, please provide the meal at home before coming to Manchester.

Breakfast:

Toddlers 8:00 am in piazza

Preschool and Pre-K:  8:00 am in classroom

*Breakfast is served from 8:00-8:15 only

Lunch:

Toddlers 11:15 am

Preschool and Pre-K:  12:00 pm

 

SPECIAL DIETS, RESTRICTIONS, AND ALLERGIES

Milk will be served at breakfast and lunch.  Water will be served at snack. If your child is allergic to an item or has a medical condition that restricts certain foods, we must have a physician’s written statement with suggested alternatives.

If your child is on a restricted diet due to religious preference and your child cannot eat certain foods, please give us a list of these foods with suggested alternatives for each food item listed. You will need to share this with your classroom teacher and the Chef. We may not be able to accommodate certain requests due to cost or preparation time required, but we will certainly do our best.

It is important that we post information about allergies or other food restrictions in our classrooms. We will ask for your written permission to do this.

 

NAPS AND REST TIME

A nap or rest period is provided for all children after lunch. It is scheduled from 12:15 p.m. to 2:45 p.m. There is a great deal of a variation from room to room. Usually, the younger the child, the more rest needed. Quiet activities are provided for older children who do not need to sleep.

 

TOILET TRAINING REQUIREMENTS

Teachers and parents work together to determine when children are ready to begin training. Each child’s readiness and needs are taken into consideration so that the training process is a positive one for the child.  Therefore, we do not have “requirements” of being toilet trained to move to classrooms.  We do begin training as children show interest, in the toddler classroom, around 18 months of age.  When a child is showing interest, we will provide information about readiness and what the process will look like at Manchester.

 

WHAT TO BRING TO MANCHESTER

(Cloth diapers are welcomed.  We will not wash them out, but will put them in a specified bag for you to take home daily)

Infants – “Seeds”

Labeled crib sheet, swaddle blanket if desired, two extra outfits, diapers and wipes to last at least a week, breast milk or formula (we have a fridge in the classroom for storage) labeled bottles, baby food for older infants, White 3 ring binder, and a framed picture of your family  (4×6 or smaller)

*All cereal and solids will be spoon-fed, and will be provided by the family.  We will not add rice cereal or thickener to a bottle without a letter of medical necessity from your child’s pediatrician.

*Sheets/swaddle blanket will be sent home on Fridays to be laundered

Toddlers – “Sprouts”

Labeled crib sheet for nap cot, labeled blanket and stuffed animal for rest time, labeled pillow case to store bedding, rain boots for outdoor rain play and for working in the garden, diapers/wipes that will last at least a week (or 2 pairs of underwear or training pants if potty training), labeled complete change of clothes, labeled toothbrush, labeled water bottle or sippy cup, framed family picture (any frame 4×6 or smaller) white 3-ring binder, sketch book with ring binding (no larger than 8 ½ x 11)

*Crib sheet and blanket will be sent home on Fridays to be laundered

*Labeled water bottle/sippy cup will be used for water drinking throughout the day and on the play yard.  It will be sent home each evening for washing and should be returned the next day with fresh ice water.

Preschool – “Blooms”

Labeled crib sheet for nap cot, labeled blanket and stuffed animal for rest time, labeled pillow case for storing bedding, rain boots for outdoor rain play and for working in the garden, diapers/wipes that will last at least a week, labeled complete change of clothes, toothbrush, labeled water bottle, framed family picture (any frame 4×6 or smaller) white 3-ring binder, sketch book with ringed binding (no larger than 8 ½ x 11)

*Crib sheet and blanket will be sent home on Fridays to be laundered.

*Labeled water bottle/sippy cup will be used for water drinking throughout the day and on the play yard.  It will be sent home each evening for washing and should be returned the next day with fresh ice water.

Pre-Kindergarten – “Blossoms”

Labeled crib sheet for nap cot, labeled blanket and stuffed animal for rest time, labeled pillow case to store bedding, rain boots for outdoor rain play and for working in the garden, diapers/wipes that will last at least a week, labeled complete change of clothes, toothbrush, labeled water bottle, framed family picture (any frame 4×6 or smaller) white 3-ring binder, sketch book with ringed binding (no larger than 8 ½ x 11)

*Crib sheet and blanket will be sent home on Fridays to be laundered

*Labeled water bottle/sippy cup will be used for water drinking throughout the day and on the play yard.  It will be sent home each evening for washing and should be returned the next day with fresh ice water.

 

TOYS FROM HOME

We ask that children do not bring toys from home, unless a class is having show-n-tell.

 

CLASSROOM/AGE REQUIREMENTS

  • Seeds: 6 students with 3 teachers (ages 12 weeks-1 year and walking)
  • Sprouts: 10 students with 2 teachers (ages 1 year-2 ½ years)
  • Blooms:  10 students with 1 teacher (ages 2 1/2 – 4 years)
  • Blossoms: 12 students with 1 teacher (ages 3 1/2-5 years)

 

EMERGENCY CLOSING POLICIES AND PROCEDURES

  1. The Director will make announcement of any change in Manchester’s hours of operations via the media: radio and news. An email announcement will be sent to parents and staff as soon as possible.
  2. In the event there is an emergency affecting only Manchester (no heat, water, etc.), we will be closed or will operate on reduced hours.
  3. Manchester reserves the right to cancel services or alter hours if weather conditions are extremely dangerous for our staff and families.
  4. Because Manchester incurs salary and other fixed costs even when closed, we cannot refund fees for the rare days we must be closed.
  5. We do not follow the public school closings.

In the rare case of a serious health emergency affecting the school, we will notify all families and will follow directives from the local Health Department and the Kansas Department of Health and Environment (KDHE) concerning our operations.

 

EMERGENCY PREPAREDNESS POLICIES

Fire drills are scheduled once a month throughout the year. Each classroom practices using two different escape routes. Tornado drills are held monthly from March through September. Fire and tornado drill procedures are posted in each classroom and all staff are trained to know what to do in these kinds of emergency situations. Classrooms serving children with disabilities have special emergency plans assigning responsibility for the disabled child.

Emergency Security Plan – In response to the increasing number of security concerns brought about by school violence events in other areas we felt it was necessary to develop an emergency plan to assure the safety of both children and staff in the center.  There are procedures in place to move all children and staff to the safest possible locations as quickly as possible. Drills will be held annually so children and staff can become accustomed to the procedures just as they do for our regular fire and tornado drills.

If a potentially dangerous situation exists outside of our building, we will follow our shelter in place procedures. All doors and windows will be locked and access to the building will be monitored closely. All children and staff will remain inside the building, but all other regular activities will go on normally.

We also have an evacuation plan in place in case there is a need to move all children and staff out of our building. In situations like a suspected gas leak or bomb threat, staff will immediately move children to our designated evacuation site.  Children will remain at our designated evacuation site until we know it is safe to return to our building. Parents will be notified of the emergency situation by cell phone and via the local media and Manchester website and/or email.

 

FIRE/TORNADO DRILLS

Fire drills will be held monthly and tornado drills will be held monthly April through September.  Children will go outside for fire drills and to interior restrooms for tornado drills.

 

CONFIDENTIALITY POLICY

Manchester considers all information regarding enrolled children and families as confidential. Our staff will not discuss a child with anyone other than pertinent staff, regulating bodies, accrediting agencies, legal guardians, custodial parents, or with those persons or agencies authorized by the family with a signed, written release of information.

No information requested by someone outside of Manchester, other than parents or guardians, will be given over the telephone unless Manchester has a written release signed by the parents.

Please do not ask teachers or part-time aides to discuss information about other children or families. Our staff is expected to adhere to the confidentiality ideals and principles in the NAEYC Code of Ethical Conduct.

 

NON-DISCRIMINATION STATEMENT

Manchester admits children of any race, color, religion, national origin, sex and qualified children with disabilities to all rights, privileges, programs and activities of the center and does not discriminate on the basis of any of these factors in administration of its educational policies, admissions policies, fee payments, and other school-administered programs.

Children with disabilities are enrolled through our regular enrollment process.  In many cases the necessary special services are available through the local school districts for children over three or the Shawnee County Tiny K Program at TARC, for children under three. If for some reason we are unable to meet a child’s special needs because necessary facilities, services, or staff, are not available, we will assist the family to find a more appropriate placement.

 

ILLNESSES

Upon arrival each day your child will be observed by a staff member for symptoms of possible illness, fever, or contagious diseases and will be sent home immediately if such symptoms are present. If your child becomes ill and/or has a temperature of 101, or higher, and/or has an episode of vomiting or two episodes of diarrhea , we will call you to take your child home. We cannot care for sick children, as we do not have the facilities or the extra staff, so a prompt pick up is expected.

 

WHEN TO KEEP YOUR CHILD AT HOME

Parents should keep children at home and notify the center whenever there are signs of illness, including:

  • A temperature of 101 by mouth.
  • Vomiting or diarrhea (need to be symptom free for 24 hours before returning to school)
  • Any undiagnosed rash.
  • Sore, discharging eyes, ears, or running nose.
  • A fresh cold, accompanied by sneezing, coughing and congestion. (symptoms that will interfere with daily activities)
  • Lack of appetite, listlessness, irritability, or unusual fatigue.

Children must be fever free without medication for a full 24 hours before coming back to school. If your child is sent home with a fever of 101 degrees or higher, he/she will not be allowed to come back to Manchester the next day. PLEASE SEE THIS HELPFUL TABLE FOR MORE INFORMATION.

This policy will be strictly enforced. If a child’s temperature is in the 100.0 to 100.5 degree range we will take the temperature a second time (approximately 15-30 minutes later). If the second reading is again above l00 degrees, the parents will be called. If the child has other significant symptoms or the temperature is over 101.0 degrees, the parent will be called immediately and asked to take the child home.

Please do not give your child medication to reduce fever before bringing him/her to school. This masks the problems and your child could then infect others or become ill later in the day.

If your child has been exposed to any of the following contagious diseases: whooping cough, chicken pox, cryptosporidiosis, giardiasis, hepatitis, rubella, mumps, influenza, measles ,or diphtheria, please report it immediately to the office. These illnesses must be reported by Manchester to the Health Department. Information about any contagious disease occurring in a classroom will be posted in that room.

When a child has more than one incident of vomiting or diarrhea, she/he should be kept home at least 24 hours after the symptoms disappear. We strongly suggest that normal eating habits and normal bowel movements have resumed before returning to Manchester, even if it has been 24 hours since the last episode.

Children with pink eye should be kept at home until 24 hours of treatment with antibiotic drops has been completed.

If your child has head lice, please use an effective shampoo, wash and clean all bedding, furniture, rugs, toys, clothing and car seats and call us. Manchester policy requires that all nits (eggs) be removed from the head before the child can return to school, so a child will be sent home even if only a few nits remain. Please notify us if your child has been exposed to someone with head lice.

 

MEDICAL AND DENTAL REQUIREMENTS

The Health Department requires a pre-entrance health assessment conducted within six months prior to enrollment for all children attending a child care center. It is the responsibility of parents to complete these requirements on or before the child’s first day of attendance or to have scheduled appointments by that first day. Parents who do not comply with these regulations will be asked to withdraw their children because they jeopardize Manchester’s licensing status. Immunizations must be current.  As your child receives additional immunizations, please bring in a statement showing the immunizations received and the date received. Be aware that if immunizations are given prior to the designated age, they will not be accepted by the Kansas Health Department, the licensing agency for child care facilities. A Kansas Immunization Requirements sheet is available upon request and a copy is posted in the entry area.

 

ACCIDENTS AND EMERGENCY PROCEDURES

In spite of precautionary measures, young children do have accidents. All of our teachers have had first-aid training and are able to tend to minor injuries. In case of head injuries, it is routine procedure to attempt to notify you of the accident by phone and to give you the details. We watch these children for symptoms associated with concussion, such as dizziness, dilated eyes, and vomiting.

We will contact you if we think a physician should see an injured or ill child, and we will prepare them to be picked up. In case of a more severe emergency, we will call an ambulance and notify you immediately. For minor accidents, teachers will note the incident on an individual accident report sheet, while more serious injuries that may require medical treatment will result in a more detailed two-page accident report being filed. If your work or home phone number changes, you need to notify the office immediately. All families must also have an additional person listed on their emergency treatment card.

 

ADMINISTERING MEDICATION

It is a Kansas State Department of Health licensing requirement that prescribed medicine can only be administered if it is in the pharmacy container labeled with the child’s full name, name of the medication, dosage, name of the physician, and date it was filled.

If you want us to give your child a non-prescribed medication, the medication must be in the original container. The non-prescribed medicine policy is a Manchester policy.

  1. All medication must be labeled clearly and will be kept in a locked box in the office.
  2. Medicine will be given at time requested by parent.
  3. Parents must fill out and sign an individual initial medication form and give it to the classroom teacher to be posted in the classroom. There are two types of forms, one for prescribed medication and the other for non-prescribed.
  4. Director will administer medication in the office. She will write the time the medicine was administered and her/his name on the form that you filled out. If the Director is not present, the classroom teacher will administer the medicine in the office.
  5. Teachers can administer medicine only if the Director has given him/her permission.

 

HAND WASHING

Parents and teachers can help prevent the spread of disease by modeling frequent hand washing and by requiring their children to wash hands when arriving in the classroom, before eating, after going to the bathroom, and after blowing noses or sneezing. Please practice these procedures at home and we will do the same at school.

 

APPROPRIATE CLOTHING FOR INDOOR AND OUTDOOR PLAY

All Manchester children should be dressed in comfortable clothes. Teachers will be dressed informally to allow participation in all types of activities. We recommend tennis shoes for safe climbing and walking (rather than slick bottomed shoes, flip-flops, or cowboy boots). The children will be going outside almost every day, so please make sure your child is appropriately dressed. We do go outside in the winter months and in a light rain!! Make sure your child has mittens, hats, and boots, so that he/she will enjoy playing in every type of weather. Fresh air and exercise are very important to your child’s health and well-being. In order to enjoy the outdoors, all children need appropriate clothes to help them feel more comfortable outside. Please avoid sending your child to school in expensive or special clothes that might be damaged during active or messy play.

 

OUTDOOR PLAY

If your child is not well enough to go outside with his/her class, please do not send your child to school. We do not have the staff to have one teacher remain inside with one child. Also, we feel that it is far healthier for children to go outside every possible day rather than be confined indoors. If a physician recommends it for a day or so, it might be possible for you to make arrangements with the Director while his/her class plays outdoors. The children do not go outdoors if the temperature or wind-chill is below 20 degrees.  If the temperature or heat index is 98 degrees or higher, children do not go outdoors, or may go out for a very limited amount of time.  Rain boots are required for fun in the garden and on the playground.  We want to keep children’s feet dry.

 

SUNSCREEN POLICY

Manchester staff will only apply sunscreen that has been provided by a child’s family. The sunscreen must be clearly labeled with the child’s name and given to one of the full-time teachers for safe storage. It cannot be kept in the child’s cubby or backpack. Parents must sign a parent authorization form available in the classroom before staff can apply sunscreen. This authorization will be effective for a period of one year and protects our staff from liability if your child has an adverse reaction to the sunscreen provided. We ask that parents apply sunscreen in the morning before leaving children at school. Staff will apply additional sunscreen at appropriate times later in the day.

 

SOILED CLOTHING

Please check your child’s cubby or diaper cubby each day for soiled clothing. Because we do not always have extra clothing for children, we have adopted the following policy: if a child has an accident or becomes wet for any reason and does not have extra clothing, we will call the parent to ask that either clothing be brought to school or that the child be taken home. Please note that Kansas Health Department regulations prohibit Manchester staff from rinsing out clothing soiled from toileting accidents. These will be wrapped in plastic and must be taken home by families.

 

REPORTING CHILD ABUSE OR NEGLECT

The Kansas Child Protection Act mandates that all personnel working in a licensed child care center must report suspected child abuse or neglect. In fact, there is a penalty for violation of this reporting law. This act protects the people reporting to SRS from any liability, civil or criminal. All records and reports concerning child abuse and neglect filed with SRS or the district court are confidential and will not be disclosed. All teachers at Manchester are aware of their responsibilities regarding this Act and will alert the Director should they see any signs of abuse or neglect. The director will contact Social and Rehabilitation Services reporting any suspected cases. An SRS representative may interview a child or staff member at the center, and parents will be notified following the interview.

 

CHILD SEXUAL ABUSE

Manchester staff will:

  1. Discuss child sexual abuse during staff orientation for teachers and aides.
  2. Comply with the Kansas law which states that the name, address, and birth date of every staff member and volunteer must be sent to the Kansas Bureau of Investigation for police felony check and SRS child abuse confirmation check.
  3. Urge parents to make unannounced visits to the center at any time.

 

COMMUNICATION

School information: In an effort to be Green and keep paper to a minimum, all information regarding policies, procedures, menus, and other information will be posted on the website or send through email.

PARENT-TEACHER CONFERENCES

Parent-teacher conferences are mandatory and will be scheduled at least twice a year to report your child’s progress in a variety of areas.  There will be a sign-up sheet posted in your child’s classroom with many time and date choices. A written copy of the conference report will be given to parents and one will be kept in your child’s file. In addition to the two scheduled conferences per year, special conferences can also be arranged at any time during the year upon parent or staff request. Please contact the classroom teacher if you would like to schedule a meeting.

PARENT INVOLVEMENT

Parents at Manchester commit to volunteering a minimum of 10 hours of their time throughout the school year.  This can be accomplished in a large variety of ways, as we understand that you have careers that keep you very busy.  However, we feel that parent involvement is critical in developing a family-centered program and that the benefits of your involvement is beneficial to your child’s success in their early education journey.  

DISCIPLINE

Working together with parents to help children acquire the tools of self-control is the goal of our approach to discipline. Each conflict in the preschool gives us a chance to help children learn acceptable ways to solve problems. We never shame or isolate children to punish. Our job as teachers is to anticipate, whenever possible, and to react with a clear, understandable message when necessary. With a beautifully planned environment, a curriculum that allows children to study those things they care most about, and well-trained professional staff, the need for discipline is kept to a minimum.