ALL YOU NEED TO KNOW
If you are looking for Parent Handbook for the 2023-2024 school year, please see this page.
TABLE OF CONTENTS
School begins at 9 am each morning. Please arrive a few minutes early to ensure your child is ready to enter the classroom at 9 am in order to experience the entirety of the school day. We have found that it can be difficult for children to enter play when they arrive late and the other children are already engaged in activities.
School ends at 12 pm for all classes. Pre-K children will be dismissed from Room 4 and Room 5. The children return from the playground between 11:45 am and 11:50 am. We ask that you do not arrive at the classroom before 11:55 am. If the children see you, they are likely to run to you rather than continue on to the classroom, and this could make dismissal chaotic. When you arrive, please wait outside of your child's classroom. Teachers will dismiss the children to you beginning at 12 pm. Be sure to sign your child out each day.
It has been our experience that the separation between child and parent occurs best when the parent says a warm, short “good-bye” at the door. We ask that moms, dads, and siblings remain outside the classroom when your child arrives at school. If you or your child is experiencing difficulties with the separation process, please talk to anyone on our staff, and we will work together to support your child.
9:00-9:55 Free Choice Time
9:55-10:00 Clean Up Time
10:00-10:20 Carpet Time
10:20-10:55 Small Group Time
10:55-11:45 Playground Time
11:45-12:00 Goodbye Gathering Time/Dismissal
*This is an outline schedule for Pre-K class. Please see class pages for more detailed and class specific schedules.
4’s & Young 5’s Pre-K Class 5-days: $850/month
Tuition is divided into nine equal monthly payments and is due on the 1st of the month. Tuition is considered late after the 1st of the month. A late fee of $25 will be charged to families when the monthly tuition is paid after the 1st of the month. Tuition checks should be made payable to PCC Preschool and can be mailed or delivered to the preschool office. Online payments can be made by clicking on the "Make A Payment" section of the website. There is a 2.5% fee on all credit and debit card payments. EFT payments will not incur a fee (payment with bank routing number). Families are expected to keep their tuition payments current on a monthly basis. Tuition reminders are given each month, but we do not email or mail an invoice to your home.
All tuition is due regardless of sickness, vacations, or holidays (including Thanksgiving, Christmas, Winter Break, and Spring Break), AND emergency-related closings mandated by the state/local governments, such as a pandemic, unless it is longer than two weeks. If a non-scheduled closure extends beyond two weeks, we will convert to an at-home learning program for the duration of the closure. If we convert to an at-home learning program tuition will be charged at a rate of $260 (PreK).
ARRIVAL & DEPARTURE PROCEDURES
The State of California requires that an adult bring each child to the classroom door and the adult remain until the site director or a teacher receives the child. The same is true at dismissal time. Each child will be dismissed directly to an authorized adult from one of our preschool staff. Only persons authorized by you on your enrollment forms may pick up your child. If someone else is picking up your child, the site director must receive a note with the person’s name, relationship to the child, and the date(s) this person will be authorized to pick your child up. Please put your pick up information in writing. Also, be sure to let your child know who will be picking them up from school. This creates a sense of security for your child and helps the transition from school to home to go more smoothly.
The State of California also requires that the person who brings your child to school and the person who picks your child up at the end of school signs their full name and the time on the “sign-in & sign-out” sheet. The Pre-K sign-out sheets will be outside Room 5 at dismissal and the sign-out sheet for the Preschool class will be outside of Room 1.
Please notify the school if your child will be absent for any reason. It is important for us to track the reason for children’s absences especially if it is something contagious or if your child will be absent for an extended period of time. You can email Christine Morales at firstname.lastname@example.org or call the Preschool office at (650) 365-8079.
It is important that children are picked up on time each day. School ends at 12 pm for all classes and 1pm for Lunch Bunch. We grant a 5-minute grace period for those occasional times of running late. After the 5-minute grace period there will be a charge of $1 per minute until your child is picked up. Payment will be due when the child is picked up.
If you have an emergency that is causing you to run late at pick up time, please call the preschool office at 650-365-8079.
The State of California requires that children with obvious signs of illness not be accepted at school upon arrival. The following is a partial list of symptoms that would indicate a child should remain at home and not attend school:
A fever within the last 48 hours
Diarrhea and/or vomiting within the last 48 hours
A skin rash that has not been identified
Evidence of head lice
Continuous coughing or constant runny nose
Conjunctivitis (pink eye)
Open cold sores
A green runny nose at the beginning of a cold
A runny nose that the child cannot manage
If a child comes to school with any of these symptoms, we will call you and ask you to pick your child up. If a child’s cold symptoms are making him or her lethargic, or a child’s runny nose is too much for him or her to manage, your child should remain at home. A note from a doctor is required when the child’s allergies have the appearance of cold symptoms. Medication can only be administered at school after the State of California’s written authorization requirements have been met. You can pick up the necessary forms in the office.
If a child becomes sick while at school, we will call the parents on their home, work, and cell phones. If we are not able to reach a parent after 20 minutes, we will begin calling the designated people listed in the child’s file.
If a child has a fever or vomiting or diarrhea, we ask that parents keep the child home for 48-hours from the last occurrence of these symptoms to help prevent the spread of illness.
WITHDRAWING YOUR CHILD FROM OUR PROGRAM
If you plan to withdraw your child from school, we need to be notified 30-days before your child’s last day. This allows us the time we need to fill the opening without financial impact on the school. If we are not given a 30-day notice, you will be charged one month’s tuition.
PARENT PARTICIPATION- TEMPORARILY UNAVAILABLE DUE TO COVID
Parent Play Days begin in October and allow parents or someone special to the child to come and spend the morning at school. It is a time to play together and to experience our program (Note: As we are not a co-op, Play Days are intended for parents to enjoy the day with their children. They are not required).
We encourage you to come for a play day on or near your child’s birthday. Parents or family friends who wish to attend a Play Day must show proof of a few immunizations on file to participate: MMR, tDAP, and flu shot (flu declination letter is accepted).
Throughout the school year, we also have several opportunities for parents to volunteer with special events and classroom projects.
SMALL GROUP & SNACK TIME
Small group times hold a variety of purposes for learning and socializing. During this time, the children are offered a snack that we provide each day. The snacks we serve are nut-free and cover at least two of the major food groups. Sample snacks include apple slices, wheat crackers, and water or bagels with cream cheese and water.
Normally snacks are served in a “family style” manner, and children choose what they would like to eat. However, due to COVID-19, currently, the snack is individually served. We encourage children to try all the foods available, but we never force anyone to eat.
We are a “nut-free” school due to severe nut allergies in some children. We will not serve any nuts in our school. If your child has peanut butter or foods containing nuts for breakfast, please be sure your child brushes his or her teeth and washes his or her face and hands to prevent any traces of nuts from entering our school.
Small group activity time allows for the practice and development of many skills. Teachers will provide an activity each day for the children that builds cognitive, listening, problem-solving, or small motor skills. For example, children will practice cutting with scissors, correctly holding and using crayons, and working with manipulatives. Oral language skills are strengthened through the casual conversations that take place between children and teachers. Teachers also read a story to the children during this time, followed by comprehension-type questions.
Pre-K children will learn from different Handwriting Without Tears materials. Teachers will select curriculum from Handwriting Without Tears that is appropriate for their age and level of development. These materials and activities will help children use a correct pencil grip, form letters properly, and identify letter names and sounds.
The curriculum for all our classes includes activities centered on math, science, music, art, cooking, oral language skills, social skills, and large and small motor skill development. Dramatic play is also included. Additionally, we provide opportunities for spiritual development. Children will be exposed to simple Bible stories and songs, and truths about God’s love. Every week the activities in each room are changed, providing an interesting and rich learning environment.
DISCIPLINE AT SCHOOL
Although we try to set up a learning environment that will create the least amount of conflicts, problems arise. Our first response when misbehavior occurs is to teach the correct behavior. We do this by using “clear and positive” statements. For example, if a child is throwing blocks, we will say, “The blocks are for building.” If the child continues to throw blocks, we then offer a choice: “You can build with the blocks, or you can play somewhere else.” If the behavior continues, we will give a logical or natural consequence. In this case, the child might be removed from the block area and directed to a new place to play. We encourage the child to try again by inviting him or her back to the block area to try building with the blocks. Our redirection techniques are done calmly and with respect.
Communication is essential to our staff and families. There are several ways we keep you informed about what’s happening at school. One way is through our monthly newsletter. The monthly newsletter will be emailed to you at the end of the month. It will provide you with photos from the previous month, information about upcoming themes and events, activities, parenting tips, and reminders of things you need to know for the upcoming month.
Additionally, weekly parent emails will be sent on Thursdays. Weekly emails contain reminders of special events, tuition due-dates, important dates, and more.
The curriculum for each class changes each week and is posted on our White Boards in the classrooms' windows and parent table calendar.
Most communication will take place through email. However, we will occasionally send home hard copies of information. These will be placed in your child's cubby. At dismissal, teachers will have children check their cubbies before leaving school.
Another valuable form of communication is done through person-to-person conversations. Administrative questions can be answered by calling the office, emailing us, or stopping in the office. Teachers are available for questions before and after school, and conferences can be scheduled as needed throughout the school year.
Formal Parent/Teacher conferences will be held in March. We close the school on conference days to free up our teachers to meet with you. At this time, we will share our observations and answer any questions you may have. Teachers assess each child before conferences to provide you with concrete information about your child’s growth. We ask that your child does not accompany you to conferences.
You are welcome to request a conference any time you have a concern or something you’d like to discuss. You can call the preschool office to schedule an appointment.
We are also available for informal discussions with you. Certain questions are best answered after our teachers can meet together and share their observations and input. Since each teacher will be making observations of your child, it is beneficial to gain everyone’s perspective. It is our policy to refrain from conversations regarding your child in his or her presence. We do not want to cause any embarrassment or treat your child as if he/she is not there with us.
The children will play outside in all kinds of weather, except the rain. We will go outside when it is cold, foggy, windy, and even in a light mist. We will also go outside after the rain has stopped. Please dress your child in clothes that are appropriate for the weather and that can get muddy and sandy.
When it is raining, the children will remain in the classrooms. We will extend our morning schedule and go back to free choice time to end our day.
GUIDELINES FOR CHILDREN'S DRESS
There will be many opportunities for your child to use paint, play in mud or sand, or otherwise get “messy” in the classroom and on the playground. Please dress your child in clothes that can get dirty. This will allow your child to experience the greatest amount of freedom in the activities available. Children may become reluctant to participate if they are concerned about getting their clothes dirty. The paint and art supplies we use here at school are marked as washable, though some colors can be difficult to wash out.
Please encourage your child to wear closed-toed shoes to school. Tennis shoes work best for freedom of movement. We discourage sandals, “crocs,” and flip-flops. They may cause slipping or tripping on the playground and make it difficult to run and jump freely. Also, children tend to take these types of shoes off. Children are required to wear shoes at all times while at school.
We discourage children from wearing clothing that displays superheroes or any of the current TV characters that may over-stimulate children or encourage aggressive behavior. Superheroes often create a good guy/bad guy type of play that we discourage while at preschool.
Also, please dress your child in clothing that they can easily manage when they use the bathroom at school. Elastic waist pants are easiest for children to pull up & down. Overalls, belts, and buttons are more difficult to manage.
Children will be honored in several ways on their birthdays. During the morning, the birthday child will receive a special birthday crown, and the children will sing a special “Happy Birthday” song at Carpet Time. During small group time, the birthday child will be served his/her snack on a birthday plate with a special cup and napkin. If your child has a summer birthday, we will celebrate your child’s half birthday.
TOYS FROM HOME
We find that toys brought from home often interfere with the learning environment here at school. Children become curious about these toys and want a turn to play with them. This potentially creates conflicts between the children and draws the children away from the materials the teachers have planned for the week. Toys may also get lost or broken.
If your child is asking to bring something to school, please encourage him or her to leave items at home to keep them safe.
If your child is insistent on bringing a toy to school, we will offer him or her the following choices:
We will ask the parent to take the toy once the child reaches the door.
We will ask the parent to wait while the child shows the toy to a friend or teacher and then have the parent take the toy.
It is beneficial to the staff and your child when we are aware of changes in your family status. Please keep us informed of the more obvious transitions such as separations, illness of a family member, death of a family member or close friend, moving, visitors in your home, the birth of a new baby, etc.
If issues arise during the school year, you may bring your concerns to the site director(s). There may be a time when you wish to discuss a concern with someone other than the director(s). You are encouraged to bring those concerns to Debbie Bravo, Wendy Gapastione and Dione Mason the Site Co-Director(s) of PCC Preschool. They can be reached by email at email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org and email@example.com
LOST & FOUND
Lost and Found items are placed in the Preschool Office. Feel free to check with us for anything your child is missing.
We ask families to bring the following for their children on the first day of school, in case the need arises to use:
1) An emergency kit can include applesauce, dried fruit, fruit snacks, crackers, granola bar, z-bar, beef jerky, and a bottle of water (only non-perishables). Please make sure all foods included are nut-free, and please include an information card in the Ziplock that includes your child's name and any emergency contact names and phone numbers.
2) An extra set of clothes to use in case of a potty accident, a spill, or s/he gets wet from water play.
3) Photos - one of the family and one of your child, to have displayed in the classroom.