POLICY HANDBOOK – LICENSED FAMILY CHILD CARE CENTERS
GREENHOUSE NATURE SCHOOL
VANYA SCHROEDER, CHRISTOPHER NOONAN
E7844 COUNTY ROAD PF
NORTH FREEDOM, WI 53951
I. GENERAL INFORMATION: Policy Effective Date: March 20, 2021
Greenhouse Nature School is licensed to care for no more than eight (8) children at any one time. I am inspected regularly to ensure that I meet licensing standards.
Child care services are available without discrimination on the basis of sex, race, color, creed, disability, sexual orientation, national origin or ancestry.
Greenhouse Nature School will provide care for children ages 3 through 6 years. Children must be fully potty trained to attend.
Child care services will be provided between the hours of 7:30 A.M. and 5:30 P.M, Monday through Thursday all year, September through August. No service will be provided on New Year's Day, Memorial Day, July 4th, Labor Day, Thanksgiving, Christmas Eve, Christmas, New Year’s Day. All regular fees will be charged for these holidays (fees will not be applicable on Christmas Eve). If a holiday falls on a Saturday, we will be closed the previous Friday. If a holiday falls on a Sunday, we will be closed the Monday following. In addition, the school will be closed for Winter Break from February 13 – February 28. No fees will be levied during the Winter Break.
I will post the following items for your review:
Any stipulation, condition, exemption or exception that affects the license.
Results of the latest monitoring visit (Noncompliances Statement and Correction Plan or Compliance Statement).
Any enforcement action—order, forfeiture, temporary suspension, denial or revocation—issued by the Department as soon as it is received. These items will remain posted until the violations have been verified as corrected and the action is closed.
Wisconsin Registry Certificate.
Greenhouse Nature School’s procedure to ensure that the number, names and whereabouts of children in care are known to the provider at all times is to call roll before leaving or reentering the facility. Also to collect the children for group work or circle time every half hour.
Parents will receive a pamphlet, "Your Guide to Regulated Child Care" which is a summary of child care licensing regulations, as part of an enrollment packet.
Parents are welcome to visit my child care program at any time during the hours of operation unless parental access is prohibited or restricted by a court order. If so, I will need a copy of the order. Please understand that I cannot legally limit access to a parent if there is not a copy of a court order on file at the center.
I am required to maintain a current, accurate written record of daily attendance for all of the children. Please assist me in meeting this requirement by signing your child(ren) in and out of the center on the required Daily Attendance Record.
Children will only be released to persons listed on the enrollment form. If anyone other than the child's parent or someone who is listed on the enrollment form is to pick up a child, I need to be notified in writing or by a telephone call in advance. The person picking up the child may need to show a driver's license or other picture ID.
If the parent or other authorized person arrives to pick up a child and that person appears to be intoxicated or under the influence of drugs, all reasonable steps will be taken to prevent the person from leaving with the child, including offering to call a cab or another contact person. While I cannot legally withhold a child from the legal guardian, I will not hesitate to call the local authorities if I feel the child is in danger.
It is important that we communicate daily concerning the needs and interests of your child. If there are issues or concerns that need to be discussed, please work with me to arrange a convenient time to talk on the phone in the evening so we can give the issue the attention it deserves. To foster communication, on a regular basis Greenhouse Nature School provides scheduled conferences, daily written reports, and brief verbal summaries at day’s end.
To protect each family's confidentiality, Greenhouse Nature School will not disclose personal information regarding a child or facts learned about a child or a child's family to anyone who is not authorized to receive this information. Parents, upon request, have access to all records and reports maintained on his/her child, unless restricted by court order.
Greenhouse Nature School is covered by expanded liability insurance for the premises to cover 8 children.
Greenhouse Nature School is not covered by liability insurance for the business operations.
All child care providers are mandated reporters of suspected child abuse or neglect. If a child care provider suspects a child has been abused or neglected, that provider is required to report the abuse or neglect to Sauk County Protective Services 608-355-4200. Each child care provider and substitute will receive training at least every 2 years in child abuse and neglect laws; how to identify children who have been abused or neglected; and the procedure for ensuring that all known or suspected cases of child abuse or neglect are immediately reported to the proper authorities.
No person may carry weapons while on the premises of the child care center during licensed hours. Signs (at least 5” x 7”) providing notice of refusal to allow weapons are posted near all probable access points where any individual entering the building or grounds can be reasonably expected to see the sign.
See the attached ITEMS TO BE PROVIDED list at the end of this policy for information regarding items that will be provided by the center and those that shall be provided by the parent.
II. ENROLLMENT AND DISCHARGE OF ENROLLED CHILDREN: Policy Effective Date: March 20, 2021
All children will be enrolled for a trial period of 2 weeks. During the trial period either the provider or parent may terminate child care without advance notice.
Parents must meet with me to discuss their child's specific needs and to review program policies. I will make a reasonable accommodation for a child with disabilities as specified under the Americans with Disabilities Act.
The following items must be completed and returned to the center by the first day of attendance.
Child Care Enrollment
Health History and Emergency Care Plan
Alternate Arrival / Release Agreement – Child Care Centers (if applicable)
First week's regular fee / registration fee
Parent / Provider agreement
I will inform you of any updates that are needed and give you 2 weeks to submit the updated forms.
The following items must be completed and returned to me within 2 weeks of enrollment:
Child Health Report – Child Care Centers
Day Care Immunization Record or an electronic record of your child's immunizations
Drop-in Care: I do not accept children for drop-in care.
A child may be discharged from the center for reasons such as, but not limited to:
Failure to pay fees on time (grounds for immediate termination, without advance notice).
Lack of parental cooperation.
Inability of child care program to meet the needs of the child. I will consult with the parent concerning how any problems might be solved before ending the care arrangement. The parent will be referred to other community resources.
Repeated failure to pick up the child at the scheduled time.
Failure to complete and return required forms.
Failure to comply with the terms of the child care contract.
I will give a 2-week written notice of my intent to discharge a child, and try to inform parents of local resources that may be of help to them, except when the discharge is due to parent's failure to keep current with fees owed. Should the parent remove the child during the notice period I initiate, fees will not be charged for the remaining unused days.
Parents must give a 2-week written notice of their intent to withdraw the child(ren), and will be required to pay for those 2 weeks whether or not children continue to attend. All outstanding fees must be paid.
III. FEE PAYMENTS AND REFUNDS: Policy Effective Date: March 20, 2021
Fees are to be paid in advance on Thursday for the following week's services. If there will be a third party payment, as from an employer or the county, a special payment schedule will be arranged and detailed in the contract. Parents will be responsible for any specified co-payments or unpaid amounts. Any payment more than one week late will be charged a $50.00 fee.
Registration / Enrollment fee: A registration / enrollment fee of $60.00 must be paid prior to enrollment or with your child’s first payment.
I will establish a regular rate based on your child's hours of enrollment. A full-time rate is offered for children who will be in care for 20 hours, 5 days per week.
There will be an extra fee assessed for late payment or late pick up of a child. ($10.00/ 15-min late)
Rates are the same for children aged 3 as for children aged 6.
There will be no reductions for additional children from one family. I am limited in the number of children that I may care for at one time.
No refunds will be given for days when children do not attend due to illness or other reasons.
After a child has been enrolled for 6 months, I will allow 2 weeks off per year (prorated for part-time enrollments) with no fee required. These days may be used for sick or vacation time. After these 2 weeks are used, I will require full payment for any absences for the rest of that year.
See attached Rate Sheet
IV. CHILD AND PROVIDER ABSENCES: Policy Effective Date: March 20, 2021
a. Child Absence
If your child will not attend on a regularly scheduled day please let me know within 2 hours before your child’s scheduled arrival time.
If a child who is scheduled to arrive at the center does not arrive within 30 minutes after the specified time on the written agreement signed by the parent, and I have not been notified in advance of the child’s absence, I will attempt to contact the parent or guardian to determine the child’s whereabouts. All attempts, whether successful or unsuccessful, will be documented.
If a child is expected to arrive at the center from someplace other than home (e.g., school, head start, etc.) and does not arrive as scheduled, I will immediately attempt to contact that facility, and the parent if necessary, to determine the child’s whereabouts.
b. Provider Absence
Vacation: I will take 4 weeks of vacation each year. This will almost always be February. For these 4 weeks, the center will continue as usual, as the part-time caregiver [TBA] will cover these days. In the event that the center must close for any reason, I will let you know of this time off at least 10 days in advance if possible, so you and your family can make alternate arrangements.
Illness: In the event that I or a household resident become ill, I will notify the parents of all regularly scheduled children no later than 7:00 P.M. the night before the center will be closed. Regular fees will be charged when I am closed because of an illness.
Unplanned absence: In case of an emergency situation that requires my immediate attention, I will call Chris Noonan OR the part-time caregiver [TBA]. My emergency back-up person has been trained in First Aid and CPR, and will come to the center to stay with the children during my absence. If s/he is unable to attend during the emergency, parents will be called to pick up their children as soon as possible, and should do so within 2 hours of receiving the call. Each time an emergency situation occurs, I will provide my emergency back-up person with a brief orientation immediately before being left alone with the children. The orientation will include all of the following:
The names and ages of children present.
Arrival and departure information for each child including the names of people authorized to pick up the child.
The location of the children’s files including emergency contact information, consent for emergency medical treatment and any special health care needs.
Regular fees will be charged when I am closed because of an emergency.
Planned absence: In the event that I am scheduled to be gone, Chris Noonan or the second teacher [TBA] will act as my substitute. My substitute has received Shaken Baby Syndrome prevention training and all other entry-level Early Childhood Education training at a minimum. Before my substitute or any other provider required to meet the staff-to-child ratios begins to work with the children, I will provide them with an orientation. Completion of the orientation will be documented on a form provided by the Department of Children and Families and placed in the employee file. The orientation will include all of the following:
Names and ages of all the children in care.
Current arrival and departure information for each child including the names of people authorized to pick up the child.
Review of children’s records including emergency contact information.
Specific information relating to child’s special health care needs including medications, disabilities or special health conditions.
Overview of the daily schedule including meals, snacks, nap and any information related to eating and sleep schedules of infants and toddlers.
Review of center’s procedures for dealing with emergencies.
Procedure for reporting suspected abuse and neglect of a child.
Plan for evacuating sleeping children if night care is provided.
Procedure to contact a parent if a child is absent from the center without prior notification from the parent.
Review of center policies required under 250.04(2)(e).
Review of chapter DCF 250 Family Child Care Centers.
Review of DHS 12.07(1) regarding caregiver reporting requirements.
V. HEALTH: Policy Effective Date: March 20, 2021
a. Child Illness / Injuries
Children who are ill are not to be brought to the center. The following are examples of children who are ill:
A temperature of 99 degrees F. or higher
Vomiting or diarrhea has occurred more than once in the past 24 hours
A contagious disease such as chicken pox, strep throat or pink eye
An unidentified rash
Has not been on a prescribed medication for at least 24 hours or continues to have symptoms of illness
Has a constant, thick, colored nasal discharge
If a child should become ill while at the center, parents will be contacted immediately. Sick children will be isolated within my sight or hearing and made as comfortable as possible. Children should be picked up within 2 hours. If the child is not picked up within 2 hours, the emergency contact person on the child's enrollment form will be called.
Children may return to the center when they are symptom free, have been appropriately treated or have been given medical approval to return to child care. I will follow procedures on personal cleanliness and communicable diseases in accordance with licensing rules and the guidelines for exclusion of children from child care as adapted from the Department of Health Services, Division of Public Health.
I will report all communicable diseases, when required, to the regional licensing office of the Department of Children and Families, to the local health department and to parents of all enrolled children. Parents of all enrolled children will not be notified when their child has been exposed to an illness other than a communicable disease.
I have received training in first aid. I will follow standard emergency medical procedures for treating injuries. A head injury will be treated as a serious injury, and parents will be notified as soon as possible. I have a current certification in infant and child cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) including training in the use of an automated external defibrillator (AED).
Superficial injuries will be washed with soap and water and covered with a bandage or treated with ice. Parents will be told about the minor injury when the child is picked up at the center or delivered to the parent or other authorized person.
If there is a need for emergency medical treatment, 911 will be called and the child will be taken to Reedsburg Medical Center. Should an ambulance be needed, parents will be responsible for any costs. Parents will be contacted as soon as possible after contacting 911. If possible, I will ask that your child be taken to the emergency medical facility that you designated on the child enrollment form.
All medication administered, accidents or injuries occurring during the time the child is in my care, marked changes in behavior or appearance and any observation of injuries to a child's body received outside of my care will be entered into the center's medical logbook. As a licensed child care provider, I am required to report suspected child abuse or neglect to the local authorities.
I have not been authorized by the licensing agency to provide care for mildly ill children.
I will administer medications under the following conditions: Prescription and non-prescription medication will only be given to children if parents have completed the authorization form provided. All medicine must be in its original container bearing the label with child's name, dosage and administration directions. I will not exceed the age-related dosage on the label of any medication without a written doctor's authorization. Blanket authorizations, such as dispensing pain relievers at my discretion, are not allowed.
Prior to applying sunscreen or insect repellant to a child, I will obtain a written authorization from the child’s parent. The authorization shall include the brand and the ingredient strength.
Smoking is not permitted on the premises of the center during licensed child care hours. No one occupying the house smokes.
VI. NUTRITION: Policy Effective Date: March 20, 2021
I will follow or exceed USDA guidelines when planning our menus. Effort will be made to incorporate vegetables from the home garden and local grass-fed meats. Parents providing their own children's meals and snacks will be informed verbally of the USDA nutritional requirements.
No child will go without nourishment for longer than 3 hours. I will offer the following meals and snacks to all children in attendance at the times identified in the daily schedule:
A.M. snack 8:30 a.m.
Lunch 11:30 a.m.
If your child has special dietary needs (whether due to a medical condition or personal choice) or has food allergies, parents must notify the center in writing.
Any special diet based on a medical condition, excluding food allergies, but including nutrient concentrates and supplements, may be served only upon written authorization of a child’s physician and upon the written request of the parent. Food and supplement must be provided by the parent.
Weekly records of meals and snacks are available for your review online and posted.
VII. DAILY ACTIVITIES: Policy Effective Date: March 20, 2021
I do not include religious instruction or practices in my daily activities. We do not offer prayers before meals and snacks. We do not offer a religious education program or curriculum. But we are very excited about all creation.
We celebrate the following occasions: Christmas, Easter, Halloween, change of seasons, children’s birthdays.
I plan activities according to the age and developmental level of each child in care, and provide children with a variety of experiences. The daily activities include a flexible balance of indoor and outdoor activities, active and quite play, and individual and group activities. The activities provided will expose the children to a variety of cultures, and will encourage the children to use and develop language and literacy skills, use large and small muscles, think creatively, learn new ideas and skills, and participate in imaginative play. The activities are designed to provide protection from excess fatigue and over stimulation and to ensure that each child can be successful and feel good about himself or herself. Some of the activities include:
Language development: e.g. Books, songs, cooperation with peers and social skills,
Large motor skills: e.g., Outdoor play, musical instruments, tool manipulation
Small motor skills: e.g., Arts and crafts, outdoor play
Creative expression: e.g., Drawing, painting, storytelling in all forms, building and using materials outside, long-term projects
Self-care skills: e.g. Readiness for weather in regards to dressing oneself, mealtime preparation, clean-up, gardening
Literacy skills: e.g. Books, alphabet games
PLAY is the major component of our program. Enough time, materials and space will be provided for children to actively explore the world around them. Children will have an opportunity to use a variety of art materials, building tools, garden tools, and manipulative and housekeeping equipment.
School-age children will have a quiet place to study or relax, access to appropriate materials and activities and will have ample time for large muscle activities and to participate in food preparation.
Children will go outdoors daily when weather permits (above 20 degrees Fahrenheit), so dress your child appropriately for the weather; raincoats on rainy days and both a warm jacket and snow pants on days below freezing. Please make sure your child has rubber boots for fine and rainy days, and winter boots for the winter.
The children may be kept indoors during inclement weather such as any of the following:
Temperatures above 90 degrees F.
Wind chills of 0 degrees F. or below for children age 2 and above; temperatures of 20 degrees F or below
There is an outdoor play space on the premises of the center.
I do not have a swimming pool on the premises. I have a seasonal stream on the premises that will be used for water play.
I will not allow children to watch G-rated television including VHS or DVDs. The center is screen-free. Children may not bring VHS or DVDs from home
Field trips: We occasionally take field trips, including forays into other areas of the property. An extra ECE provider or parent will be present at those times. Emergency information for each child will be taken whenever the children leave the premises.
See attached SCHEDULE OF DAILY ACTIVITIES.
VIII. CHILD GUIDANCE: Policy Effective Date: March 20, 2021
Children's behavior will be guided by setting clear limits or rules for children. I will talk with children about expected behaviors and model those behaviors consistently for them. I will state positively what children can do, using specific, positive terms (e.g., "you need to walk" rather than "don't run"). Undesirable behavior will be redirected to another activity. Children will be given a wide variety of age-appropriate activities to choose from and will be given the attention they need before they demand it. Behavior management will be for the purpose of helping children develop self-control, self-esteem and respect for the rights of others.
I understand that there will be times when a child will become distraught, fussy or won’t quit crying. My first action in these situations will be an attempt to determine the cause of the distress. It may be related to a basic need such as hunger or comfort, or it may be that the child just needs some extra time and attention. I understand that crying is normal, and that all babies will have times when they cannot stop crying. At these times, I will stay calm and will do whatever I can to soothe your child. Sometimes this may mean just allowing the child to cry for a few minutes and then trying again. However, there also may be times when I need your advice or assistance, and I won’t hesitate to call you if I feel that it is necessary.
I do not use "time outs" to deal with unacceptable behavior.
I recognize that no single technique will work with children every time. If a child exhibits unacceptable behavior, I will request a conference with parents to consider how to deal with the behavior. If the behavior continues, the next steps may include referrals to appropriate community resources and / or discharge of the child from care.
In accordance with DCF 250 Licensing Rules for Family Child Care Centers, actions that may be psychologically, emotionally or physically painful, discomforting, dangerous or potentially injurious are prohibited. Prohibited actions include spanking, hitting, pinching, shaking, slapping, twisting, throwing or inflicting any other form of corporal punishment on the child; verbal abuse, threats or derogatory remarks about the child or the child's family; physical restraint, binding or tying the child to restrict the child's movement; enclosing the child in a confined space such as a closet, locked room, box or similar cubicle; withholding or forcing meals, snacks or naps; actions that are cruel, aversive, humiliating or frightening to the child; or punishing a child for lapses in toilet training. These forms of punishment will never be used, even at a parent's request.
IX. TRANSPORTATION: Policy Effective Date: March 20, 2021
I do not provide transportation. Public transportation is not used for field trips.
You will be notified in advance of the date, time and destination of any field trip requiring transportation.
Children will never be left unattended in any vehicle.
In order to track children being transported and ensure that their whereabouts are documented from the time the child is picked up until that child is relinquished to the responsible caregiver, I will take a written attendance checklist to make sure that all children are accounted for by name and sight at each transition, including each time any vehicle is exited. If I am transferring the children to another responsible adult, I will be sure the adult acknowledges the transfer before leaving the child.
All vehicles will be visually checked upon reaching a destination to ensure all children have exited. Any vehicles that have a manufacturer seating capacity of 6 or more passengers in addition to the driver have a child safety alarm that is in working order. This does not include public transportation.
All vehicles used to transport children in care are covered by liability insurance.
Annually, I will obtain and review the driving record of any person who will transport children and obtain an inspection for each vehicle used to transport children. This does not include public transportation.
X. PETS: Policy Effective Date: March 20, 2021
Greenhouse Nature School has one cat on the premises. Pets will be allowed in areas accessible to children during the hours of operation; Greenhouse Nature School has liability insurance that includes coverage for dogs and/or cats. All pets for which there is an effective vaccine against rabies have been vaccinated. Prior to adding new pets to the center, I will notify parents in writing.
If your child has pet allergies, please inform me verbally and also be sure to write them down on the Health History and Emergency Care Plan under the non-food allergies section.
XI. EMERGENCY PROCEDURES: Policy Effective Date: March 20, 2021
Fire drills shall be practiced with the children monthly. In addition, tornado drills shall be practiced with the children monthly during the tornado season which is April through October. Completion of all practice drills will be documented.
In the event of a lost child, I will check all areas of the center. If the child cannot be found, the child's parents and / or emergency contact and the police will be notified immediately. I will notify the Department within 24 hours after the occurrence.
In the event of a tornado warning, the children will be taken to the basement. Blankets and a portable radio and flashlight, with extra batteries for both, are kept in the tornado shelter area at all times. The attendance form and emergency contact information will be brought along.
In case of an emergency that would require an evacuation, children will be evacuated through the nearest safe exit. The attendance form and list of phone numbers for parents and emergency contacts will be taken along to ensure that all children are accounted for and all families notified. Children will be assembled at the front yard.
If we are unable to re-enter the building after a necessary evacuation, I will drive the children to the North Freedom Fire Department, 105 North Maple St. North Freedom, WI 53951, and contact parents for pick-up.
If the center should lose the use of heat, water or electricity before the center opens, I will contact families, use a [model #] generator to provide backup power.
If the center should lose the use of heat, water or electricity while children are in attendance, I will use a [model #] diesel generator for backup power.
In the event that local schools close due to severe weather, the center will close. Parents will be contacted to pick up their children within the hour.
In the event that the center receives a threat to the building or its occupants (e.g., bomb threat, bodily injury threat, etc.), law enforcement and the parents will be immediately contacted to advise them of the threat. Depending on the nature of the threat, evacuation and/or closure or lockdown may be required.
ITEMS TO BE PROVIDED – March 20, 2021
Parent Provided Center Provided Items
X Bottle for water
X Foods (in case of allergies only)
X Full seasonal change of clothing including underwear and socks
X Insect repellent
X Clothing suitable for outdoor play for each season
X Slippers or house shoes
X Rain boots/ Winter boots according to season
RATE SHEET – March 20, 2021
Rates at Greenhouse Nature School, effective March 20, 2021, are as follows:
Children 3 - 6 years of age
Full-time care (4 days/ 40 hours / week) $200 per week
Part-time care (2 full days / week) $100 per week
Fee for late pick up of child $10.00 per 15 minute interval (or any fraction thereof) per child.
Fees are to be paid in advance on Wednesday or Thursday, whichever is the child’s last day of the school week, for the following week's services. If there will be a third party payment, as from an employer or the county, a special payment schedule will be arranged and detailed in the contract. Parents will be responsible for any specified co-payments or unpaid amounts.
Fee for late payment. If a payment is more than 14 days late, including weekend days, a mandatory daily fee of $5.00 will be charged for each day payment is not made. This fee will be charged for each day payment is not made (including the 14 days already past due).
Fee for non-sufficient funds (NSF) or overdrafts. You will be charged an additional fee of $50.00 if your check does not clear the bank.
The financial terms will be finalized upon signing of the parent-provider contract.
If parent or legal guardian is under age 18, a cosigner must sign the contract to act as guarantor to the contract, and agree to be bound by all financial terms.
Families will receive a minimum of 4-week’s notice when a rate increase is planned.
SCHEDULE OF DAILY ACTIVITIES – March 20, 2021
7:30 to 8:30 - Welcome/ Free Play/ Circle Time/ Morning Songs
8:30 to 9:00 - Morning Snack/ Restroom break
9:00 to 11:00 - Outdoors Time (Social skills, Counting, Large motor skills, Small motor skills, Self-help skills, Building, Dramatic play, Gardening)
11:00 to 11:30 - Clean-up/ Mealtime preparation/ Restroom break
11:30 to 12:15 - Lunch
12:15 to 1:00 - Storytime / Quiet time
1:00 to 3:00 - Nap
3:00 to 4:00 - Continuing themes from Outside Play (Arts and Crafts, Large project planning and execution, Reading time, Cooperation. Problem-solving, Critical thinking)
4:00 to 5:30 -Outdoors Time (Social skills, Counting, Large motor skills, Small motor skills, Self-help skills, Building, Dramatic play, Gardening)
PARENT / GUARDIAN ATTESTATION AND SIGNATURE
I, the parent / guardian, by my signature below attest that I have received a copy of the child care center policies with an effective date of 3/20/2021. I further attest that I have read and understand these policies, and I agree to abide by them.
Signature – Parent / Guardian Date
Signature – Licensee Date
Note: Policies shall be provided to the parents any time the policies are updated. It is recommended that the licensee obtain a new attestation and signature from the parents when updates are made.