PARENT HANDBOOK

Hours and Registration

Big Mike’s Fun Farm Incorporated (The Fun Farm) opens at 6:30 am and closes at 6 pm, Monday to Friday.

The Centre will be closed on all statutory holidays (New Year’s Day, Good Friday, Easter Monday, Victoria Day, Canada Day,  B C Day, Labour Day, Thanksgiving, and Remembrance Day, as well as one additional week between Christmas Eve and New Year’s Day). If the stat day is on a Saturday or Sunday, the Centre will be closed on the following Monday.

Wee Fun Farm Preschool Program is in operation the same days as the local school district.  When the schools are closed the preschool program is not in operation.

During our pre-registration interview (informal conversation regarding Centre philosophies and information about child and family) you and your child may visit the Centre to determine if he/ she likes it. This process takes about half an hour and there is no obligation at this time.

Upon registration, a $100 enrollment fee is due and one month’s fees will be required in advance to hold your spot. These fees will be held as a deposit until withdrawal from the program. If the centre receives 30 days notice (from the first of the new month) then the deposit will be credited for the last month’s fees. If the centre does not receive 30 days written notice, then the deposit will be used in lieu of payment for the last month.

All paperwork must be completed before the child stays at the centre. This includes; registration forms, immunization records, permission forms, Parent-Centre contract, and post-dated cheques for September to August.  Fees are due and payable on the first of each month.  Please date cheques accordingly.

Once a child is registered for SUMMER DAYCAMP, registration fees are NONREFUNDABLE.

There is no reduction if fees for absenteeism (vacation or illness). All cheques are to be made payable to Big Mike’s Fun Farm Inc. (or The Fun Farm) and receipts will be issued each February at income tax time, unless other arrangements are made. All NSF cheques will be paid immediately, as well as any bank charges.

There is a one month probationary period during which time either party may terminate the day care service without notice. After this period, written notice must be given one month in advance to discontinue service, or one month’s fees must be paid in lieu of notice. *(see Parent/Centre contract)

Please pick up your child as soon as you finish work because they have had a long day. As the Centre closes at 6:00 pm sharp, any parent who has not picked up their child by that time will be charged $1 per child per minute for each minute that he or she is late.

If the child is not picked up by 6:30 pm, the emergency contact person will be called. If this person is not available to pick up the child, Social Services may be contacted. This is unlikely to occur if someone has communicated the parents’ whereabouts to Centre personnel.

Guidance and Discipline

The purpose of guidance and discipline in this Centre is to provide a safe and healthy learning environment in which each child can feel secure. Each child will be encouraged and supported to develop positive relationships with peers and staff. Staff will strive to be appropriate behavioral models, showing respect for children, parents, co-workers and their environment. To this end, parents can expect that staff will:

  • Demonstrate affection and caring to your child through appropriate forms of verbal and physical interaction
  • Maximize opportunities for appropriate and positive behavior for your child through the program and activities
  • Provide clear, simple and consistent limits regarding appropriate behaviors within the Centre; such limits will be offered in a positive manner. Harsh or belittling language will not be used at any time. Physical punishment will not be used at any time.
  • Give verbal direction and redirection as the main means of guidance and discipline
  • Recognize and label your child’s feelings in situations which may be difficult for him/her
  • Supervise your child at all times

Parents are encouraged to question staff if they are unclear about the handling of any incident within the Centre.

As partners guiding you child through these key developmental years, it is desirable that staff and parents work closely and honestly together.

Staff will be pleased to discuss any question you may have about any aspect of this guidance and discipline guideline.

Ways to Discipline

  • Change the surroundings to remove the likelihood of misbehavior
  • Focus on the logical and natural consequences that will, or may follow a specific behavior
  • Express concern for the child’s feelings
  • Reward appropriate behavior and remind children of rules regarding safety
  • Be firm and respectful when redirecting a child away from inappropriate actions and substitute more appropriate activities and behaviors
  • Let children know it is OK to be angry, but it is not OK to hurt people
  • Focus on changing the behavior rather than changing the child
  • Assure children often that they are liked, loved and valued

Discipline Requiring Intervention

On occasion, discipline requiring an employee’s direct physical intervention may be required to maintain a safe, peaceful atmosphere at the Centre.

Steps of Discipline

  1. The Child who is causing a disruption will be asked to clarify the reason for his/her misbehavior and given a first verbal warning.
  2. If the disruptive behavior persists a second verbal warning will be given, including an explanation of the consequences to the child, should the behavior continue.
  3. If a third verbal warning is required, the child will be asked to take a 5-10 minute “time- out” during which a caregiver will discuss with the child, the expectations for his/her behavior. If the child refuses to separate from the other children he/she will be physically removed.
  4. If a second “time-out” is required in the same day the incident will be discussed with the parents.
    • At no time during the process will any child be subjected to shoving, hitting, shaking, spanking or any other form of corporal punishment
    • Neither will the child be subjected to any harsh or belittling treatment
    • No child will be confined or kept without adult supervision
    • Children will never be deprived of food, rest, or the use of a toilet. A child whose behavior remains very disruptive, despite concerted efforts of staff and parents, may be advised to seek another care facility more suited to his/her individual needs.

When a parent or guardian arrives intoxicated the educator will:

      1. Offer to call a relative or friend to pick up the parent and child
      2. Offer to call a cab
      3. Inform the parent that if he/she chooses to get in the car with or without the child, the educator will notify the police immediately. Drinking and driving is against the law and the educator is supporting the legal position.
      4. Call the ministry of Social Services if the educator feels the child is in need of protection

Procedures for Visitors Entering the Child Care Centre

      • All staff or parents/guardians will inform the Manager when they encounter a visitor on the premises
      • The Manager will explain the policy and rationale for the policy
      • The Manager will ask the visitor to leave the premises immediately
      • If the visitor does not comply with the request to leave, the manager will ask a second time, and if the request is not complied with, the manager will call the police for assistance.

The Fun Farm advocates on Open Door Communication Policy, which means:

    • Parents are welcome to drop in and observe the program at any time. If consultation with a caregiver is desired, please let us know ahead of time so that the caregiver can give you undivided attention.
    • Telephone communication is encouraged. Please check with the manager regarding mutually convenient times.
    • Parents can expect ongoing communication with staff concerning:
      • their child’s daily concerns;
      • programs activities;
      • hours of operation.
    • Parents can expect relevant parent education opportunities to help them understand their child’s development and the program we offer here.
    • Parents can expect information about community resources.
    • Parents are asked to make themselves familiar with the Parent Handbook that states the policies and procedures of the child care setting regarding:
      • the care of their child;
      • the program;
      • the general operation procedures.
    • Staff welcome feedback from parents on any aspect of the program.
    • Parents concerned with the care of their child or any incidents in the child care setting are urged to speak with their child’s caregiver. If this discussion does not bring about an appropriate resolution, the parent is encouraged to then contact the manager for further discussion.

                                                                     Missing Child Policy

The safety of children is of utmost importance in the Centre. Preventative strategies are addressed in many of the policies and procedures throughout the staff and family handbooks. The staff of The Fun Farm believe that it is important to have policies and procedures to eliminate or reduce the possibility of a child going missing. To ensure that the search for a child will be as efficient and expedient as possible it is also important to have policies and procedures in case a child is missing.

Missing Child Procedures

  • The accompanying adult or staff person will determine which child is missing
  • The adult or staff person will notify the senior staff member present who will notify all staff, field trip adults and other relevant adults (e.g. If we are visiting a museum, notify the staff of the museum)
  • The Manager will, depending on the number of available staff and adults, designate a team to search and a team to supervise the other children. Whenever possible there will be a qualified staff member on each team
  • The Manager will designate a meeting place, preferably close to the nearest telephone, and a time frame for the initial search
  • The Manager will designate areas to search in order of priority, starting with the areas that present the most danger
  • The staff member responsible for the supervision team will gather the other children at the meeting place and then access the emergency card of the missing child and the first aid kit. The time will be documented.
  • The Manager will contact police by dialing 911 if a search of the immediate area is unsuccessful
  • The Manager will then notify the parent/guardian and the licensee
  • The Manager will then gather and document as much information as possible, a description of the child, when and where the child was last seen, what the child is wearing, what areas have been searched, who has been notified and any other relevant information
  • When police arrive, the Manager will clarify the role of the child care staff with the police officer in charge
  • The Manager will stay at the search venue until the child is found and returned to the parent/guardian or the Centre, or is relieved of duty by the licensee
  • The Manager will record and report all relevant times, names, titles and details of the search, including preparing an incident report
  • If the venue is a field trip site, the other staff members and field trip adults will return with all of the other children to the Centre
  • The senior staff member on-site at the Centre, will ensure that telephone coverage is maintained until notified by the Manager at the search venue
  • Child care staff members will not issue any information to the media without the written consent of the parent/guardian
  • Senior staff will debrief as soon as possible with the children, families, staff and police/emergency personnel involved in the incident
  • Resources will be offered to children, parents/guardians, field trip adults or staff whohave difficulty dealing with the incident
  • Follow up will include an evaluation of the effectiveness of the policies and procedures, of implementation and recommendations to avoid a repeat of the incident
  • Prevention policies and procedures will be reviewed to identify ways to eliminate or reduce the possibility of a repeat of the incident

 

Health Policy

The Centre supports and promotes the concept of establishing health care policies and procedures which will enhance the physical, social and emotional well-being of children and staff.

Prior to admissions all required forms are to be completed and submitted:

  1. Registration Form (including Immunization Records)
  2. Emergency Card
  • For Children whose health might demand more than usual care from staff, admission will be based upon mutual recognition of the needs and capabilities of the child and staff. Centre Policies regarding enrollment will be followed
  • Parents of all children in the Centre must receive and read a copy of the Health Policies
  • Any health problem which is of concern to the Supervisor will be referred to the Public Health Nurse, and the parent of the child will be informed

Prevention of Communicable Disease and Infections

Communicable disease and infections can best be prevented by ensuring the child’s well-being.

“The child who is well-rested, adequately nourished, immunized, and in good general health is less susceptible to disease”, (Health, Safety and Nutrition for the Young Child, Marotz, Rush, Cross)

Prevention of Disease and Infections

Staff will practice the following to reduce the incidence of disease:

  • ensuring adequate circulation of fresh air
  • avoiding over-crowded conditions (i.e. Crowding around tables or sleep cots/cribs)
  • proper hand washing and following hygiene practices
  • modeling and teaching the correct way of covering coughs, blowing noses and the disposal of tissues
  • awareness of each child to determine the child’s state of health (i.e. Fever, runny nose, cough, poor color, listless behavior)

The “Unwell” Child

  • Many factors affect the child’s well-being and shall be considered before a child shall be presumed to be physically ill
  • Changes in the child’s general appearance or changes in the child’s behavior may be an indicator that the child’s well-being has been affected

When a Child Appears Unwell

Before a child is presumed sick, the following shall be considered by staff:

  • Is the child hungry?
  • Is the child tired?
  • Is the child stressed? (events in the child’s life which may be causing difficulty for the child)

Visual Health Check

Should a child appear unwell, staff shall make a visual health check by observing and noting the child’s general appearance (i.e. Scalp, eyes, ears, nose, mouth, throat, neck, chest, skin, speech, extremities, and behavior)

The Sick Child

In order to ensure the child’s well-being and provide environments which provide the highest standard of health protection reasonably possible, the following shall form the criteria under which a child shall not be admitted to care:

Criteria for Exclusion from Care

A child shall be excluded from care if:

  • The child has a fever of 100 degrees F /38 degrees C or more
  • The child has not been free from fever for a minimum of 24 hours (without use of fever suppressant medication)
  • It has been less the 24 hours since the start of a prescribed medication (unless otherwise indicated by the child’s physician)
  • Has not been free from vomiting or undiagnosed diarrhea for a minimum of 24 hours
  • Has an undiagnosed rash, skin infection or ear/eye discharge, particularly one which is in association with other symptoms
  • Has a sore throat, watery eyes, is sneezing or coughing frequently, and has a constant runny nose
  • Has a communicable disease or infections
  • Note: The Public Health Nurse shall be informed of all cases of communicable disease and infestation and shall be consulted when appropriate

Return to the Centre

A child may return to care provided that the exclusion period has been observed and provided:

  • The child appears capable of participating fully in the program
  • The family provides the Centre with a physician’s letter attesting to the good health of the child

Children Who Become Ill While in Care

Parents shall be asked to pick up their child immediately should any of the following symptoms appear:

  • A temperature of 100 degrees F /38 degrees C or higher
  • The onset of an undiagnosed rash, infection, eye/ear discharge
  • After one incidence of vomiting
  • A sore throat
  • Any combination of lethargy, pallor, irritability, or unusual fatigue and after two incidences of diarrhea
  • A cold which has reached the acute stage (i.e. Sneezing, coughing, watery eyes, runny nose)
  • Any of the symptoms associated with common childhood diseases or infestations

Responsibilities of Staff

Should a child have any of the symptoms indicated in (The Sick Child) the staff shall:

  • Care for the child apart from the group as much as reasonably possible
  • Contact the child’s parents
  • If the child’s need for medical attention appears imminent, shall arrange for immediate transport
  • If necessary inform all parents and the Public Health Nurse
  • Carry out policy regarding an acutely ill and/or injured child

Responsibilities of the Parents

When informed of their child’s condition parents shall:

  • Arrange to pick up their child immediately or, arrange for an alternate to pick up.
  • If the emergency pick up person is not on the emergency card, the parent shall contact and inform the Centre.
  • Let the Centre know the nature of the child’s illness if a visit to the doctor is required.

Note: Parents are reminded that children who are ill cannot be sent to the child care Centre. Lack of appropriate space and cost factors prevent us from taking sick children. Therefore, Parents are encouraged to seek and arrange for alternate care for their child prior to enrollment in the Centre and, prior to any illness.

Immunization Prior to Entry

Prior to entry into care each child shall have received those immunizations which are:

  • Available and recommended by the provincial Health Department.
  • Appropriate to child’s age.

A completed Health Department Health Form shall be given to the Centre Supervisor prior to the child’s entry.

During Care

  • During the care period, each child’s immunizations shall be kept current
  • The Centre staff shall be informed of subsequent immunizations by the parents
  • The Public Health Nurse shall have access to the child’s health file and shall advise parents of the necessary immunizations
  • Failure to comply with the immunization requirements shall result in withdrawal of care

EMERGENCY POLICY for the Fun Farm

Monthly fire drills will be practiced and recorded. The Manager will shout “fire drill” and everyone will exit and gather at the designated meeting place as indicated on the posted evacuation plan. An evacuation pack with emergency supplies and information will be taken on the drills.

Regular earthquake drills will be practiced and recorded. The Manager will shout “earthquake drill” and everyone will move towards the inside wall or go under a table. Everyone will crouch low and hold on until the Manager proclaims “all clear”. Emergency supplies will be checked for accessibility and any expired items will be replaced.

In the case of a real disaster the Manager will assess the building for safety. If safe, emergency supplies will accessed as needed and provisions to stay in the building will be made. The battery powered radio will be turned on to await any instructions for evacuation and location of the emergency shelters.

If evacuation is necessary, the evacuation pack and emergency supplies will be taken to the meeting place and we will proceed to the designated emergency shelter. A note will be left on the daycare door stating where we have relocated to. Designated emergency shelter locations will be assessed for safety at the time. Options are: 1. Vehicle parking garage 2. House on the daycare property 3. Ruskin Hall (within walking distance on 96th Avenue)

As soon as possible the Manager will attempt to contact parents. If the phone lines are down and if the long distance lines come back on first, the Manager will contact the out of area person and leave a message for the parents. The parents are to keep the out of area person’s phone number with them at all times so they will be able to pick up any emergency messages.

Petting Zoo Policy

  • All handling of pets will be followed up with proper hand washing procedures
  • An acceptable level of cleanliness will be maintained in the petting zoo area at all times
  • Children will only interact with safe, healthy, vaccinated animals
  • Children will always be supervised when interacting with animals

Abuse Reporting Policy

Should an allegation be brought forward against the facility (regarding staff) it is to be reported to Ministry of Health Licensing. The accused staff member will be asked to have no unsupervised contact with children until the investigation is complete.

Reports will be made to the Ministry of Children and Family Development when an allegation is brought forward that has occurred while not at the facility

Pick-up Policy

Parents will have all persons authorized to pick up children noted on registration forms. Should an emergency arise and an unauthorized person needs to pick up a child, the parent must:

  1. telephone the daycare, giving the name and description of the pick-up person
  2. ensure that the person picking up the child is a responsible adult and is willing to provide acceptable identification.

Incident Reporting Policy

REPORTABLE INCIDENTS

Reportable incident forms are kept in the folder marked as such. Read the back of the form for the definitions of what is reportable. If a reportable incident has occurred a form must be completed and Licensing notified within 24 hours.

The form will be completed by the staff who was most directly involved in the incident. Instructions on how to fill out the form are also in the file folder. The Manager/Licensee will review and sign the form.

The White copy is kept for the facility and is placed in the child’s file. The yellow and pink copies are mailed to Licensing at #400 22470 Dewdney Trunk Road, Maple Ridge, B.C. V2W 5Z6. The Manager will phone Licensing within 24 hours of the incident at 604-476-7000.

NON-REPORTABLE INCIDENTS

Minor incidents, illness or unusual events are recorded in the log book. Any entry must be dated and signed