STUDENT HANDBOOK (K2, K3, K4, K5)
At Agape' Learning Center, we offer preschool, kindergarten and the only state licensed day care center in our area. As a non-profit ministry of Foursquare Church, we have served our community for over 30 years by providing quality and affordable childcare and education. We believe in the value of a comprehensive, Christian education acceptable across the evangelical spectrum. We invite you to experience our commitment to providing a safe, educational, nurturing environment where parents can leave their children knowing they will be well cared for.
At Agape', we believe in nurturing the "whole child": physically, intellectually, emotionally, socially and spiritually. We achieve this through a variety of activities that are developmentally appropriate and recognize the individual needs of children. Through Christian principals and teachings, children are encouraged to be independent thinkers and life-long learners.
Agape' Learning Center is first a ministry to the community. We pride ourselves on providing a Christian environment where children can grow through God's love and His teachings.
We put your child's safety first at Agape'. Our goal is to provide an environment where parents feel comfortable leaving their children knowing that their needs will be met by loving teachers who truly care about each child.
We want to nurture the love of learning through activities that captivate and challenge children to grow intellectually.
Director: Megan Watters
Office: (765) 529-8774
There shall be no discrimination on the basis of race, color, age, religion, sex, national origin, or handicap. Agape’ shall not admit or maintain any child whose needs it obviously cannot meet or whose behavior would be dangerous for other children. To enroll a parent must complete the application forms and pay a registration fee.
Our school colors are red and white.
(to the tune of “It’s a Grand Ole Flag”)
You’re A Grand Ole School
You’re a grand ole school,
You’re a high ranking school,
You’re the best in the North we all say,
Here the kids are smart, and they do their part—
We’re loyal to you everyday,
Every heart beats true for our own colors too—
You’re the best school in every way,
Should old acquaintance be forgot,
But our school is here to stay! AGAPE’!!!
Pledges We Will Learn
THE PLEDGE TO THE NATIONAL FLAG
I pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of America and to the republic for which it stands; one Nation under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.
THE PLEDGE TO THE CHRISTIAN FLAG
I pledge allegiance to the Christian Flag and to the Savior for whose Kingdom it stands; one Savior, crucified, risen and coming again, with life and liberty to all who believe.
THE PLEDGE TO THE BIBLE
I pledge allegiance to the Bible, God’s Holy Word; I will make it a Lamp unto my feet and a light unto my path; I will hide its words in my heart that I might not sin against God.
Children entering Two’s Playgroup must be two before Aug 1st. Students entering K-3 must be 3 years old by August 1. Students entering K-4 must be 4 years old by August 1. Students entering K-5 must be 5 years old by August 1. All K3, K4 and K5 students must be potty trained.
Agape is a private program voluntarily licensed by the State of Indiana and on Paths to Quality. A copy of the licensing rules are available on the web at http://www.in.gov/fssa/files/BCC_Centers_Interpretive_Guide.pdf
Hours of Operation
Agape’ is open Monday through Friday from 6:30am to 6:00pm. The center is closed for the following holidays.
Labor Day Good Friday
Fall Break (2 days) Spring Break (1 week)
Thanksgiving Break (2 days) Conference Day (1 day in the Spring)
Christmas break (2 weeks) Memorial Day
4th of July
Should Agape’ be closed due to inclement weather, this information will be posted in REMIND txt and Brightwheel. The administrator will attempt to make the closing decision prior to 6:00am, although this is not always possible.
Agape’ also uses a text alerting system. If you want to receive text alerts for cancelations and other updates throughout the year, you may enroll on your phone. This program is free of charge; however your normal texting rates will apply. You may opt out at any time. In order to receive text alerts from Agape’, please follow these steps:
Begin a text message to the number 81010
In the message area type: @agapenc
On occasion our facility might need to close during our scheduled day. Should this occur, you will be notified to come and pick up your child.
If your child will not be at school, please call the office to let them know. The teacher may send home make up work to complete.
If your child is also enrolled in day care: Regarding daycare, if your child is sick for an entire week, you will not be billed ONLY IF you call your child in everyday they are sick. We are also required by the state to post communicable diseases that any of our students contract so if your child is diagnosed by a doctor with a communicable disease, please let the office know.
K-3, K-4, K-5 students also enrolled in day care are given 2 weeks of vacation time per year. These may be used by the week (not by the day) when your child will not be in attendance to avoid a minimum charge. In order to use your vacation time, a form must be filled out and turned into the office 2 weeks prior to the absence. *Vacation forms available upon request in the office.
There is no daycare services available for our Two’s Playgroup.
If my Child's tuition payment is not paid by the 10th of the month, I understand I will pay a late fee of $10.00. I realize if it is 30 days in arrears it will result in suspension of my student until I have made arrangements for payment with the administrator. The administration reserves the right to send all accounts which are 2 months past due to a collection agency and withdraw the child from school. The child will not be allowed to return until their balance is paid in full. Further, if there is a waiting list, the spot will be forfeited and the next child on the waiting list will take the vacant spot.
For students also enrolled in day care:
If a child is enrolled in our day care, the parents must pay the minimum amount weekly, even if the child did not use any hours in a given week (with the exception of illness when called in every day and vacation when a vacation form has been filled out with the office).If withdrawal of a child is necessary, .If a family vacation is taken, in order to avoid the minimum charge.Each child is entitled to two weeks of vacation per year without the minimum charge.
When a child is enrolled in our school or day care, a registration/supply fee must accompany his/her enrollment form. A Health form must be completed and signed by the child’s doctor. All other forms in the enrollment packet must be read, filled out in their entirety and kept in the child’s file.
Breakfast and Lunch:
Agape’ is on CACFP (Child and Adult Care Food Program)All meals and snacks are free to every child.
If the child will be arriving at day care after 10:00 am and eating lunch with us, the parent must call the office or message via Brightwheel by 10:00 am to have the child added to the lunch count.Lunch is served at 12:00 p.m. during the school year and 11:30 a.m. during the summer.
Picking up a child after K-3, K-4, K-5 dismissal time ():
All school only students not picked up within 10 minutes past dismissal will be sent to a day care classroom to wait and a $10.00 Late Pick Up fee will be assessed the first time. The second time, there will be a $20 late fee. The third time, there will be a $30 late fee. If the day care classrooms are at capacity, the child will wait in the office. Late fees will still apply. Exceptions will only be made in the case of true emergencies.
Picking up a child after hours (for students enrolled in daycare):
If a child is picked up from day care after our closing time the following fees will be charged: 6:00 – 6:15 pm:$8.00 per child; 6:15-6:30 pm:an additional $10.00 per child.Should a child be in our care past 6:30 pm, we reserve the right to contact local authorities and have them pick up the child.
If tuition is not paid by the 10th of the month, a late fee of $10.00 will be added. If your account is 30 days in arrears it will result in suspension of the student until arrangements for payment have been made with the administrator. The administration reserves the right to send all accounts which are 2 months past due to a collection agency and withdraw the child from school. The child will not be allowed to return until their balance is paid in full. Further, if there is a waiting list, the spot will be forfeited and the next child on the waiting list will take the vacant spot.
For students enrolled in day care:
Day care is billed the week following service.Our week begins Monday morning and ends Friday evening.The bill will be available to view by Monday Afternoon on your MyProcare Account.The parent is responsible to view and pay the bill by 6:00 p.m. Friday. You can pay online, at the check in kiosk, or in the office. Payments may also be dropped in the mailbox outside of the office.After Friday, a $5.00 late fee will be added.If not paid within one (1) week of the due date, the child cannot return until at least the past due amount is paid.If only the past due amount is paid and the total payment due is not received by the due date, the child’s card will be pulled the next Monday until the account is in good standing.Late fees will be added accordingly.After 4 weeks of nonpayment or arrangements not having been made for payment, the administration reserves the right to turn your account over to a collection agency.Should any other action be necessary, you will be responsible to pay any other fees such as attorney fees and/or court fees.
We believe discipline to be an integral part of school development. It affects the social, emotional, academic, and spiritual growth of a child. Therefore, we have chosen to implement the following discipline procedure for the well-being of your child.
The day care uses a positive disciplinary approach with children. Children are informed of any inappropriate misbehavior and redirected to more constructive activities, or allowed to spend some quiet time to themselves in an area so designated.
If a problem occurs in the classroom, the teacher is to make the correction at that point. Guidelines to be followed:
A. Were the directions clear and understandable?
B. Was the misdeed calculated or a mistake?
C. Is there an underlying emotional or physical problem to the disturbance: "problem" means an attitude or action that is disturbing the learning process of the child in question or others about him, or an attitude or action that is in clear violation of the Christian standards of Agape' Learning Center.
In cases where there is an emotional or other problem contributing to a child's actions or attitudes, the administrator will work with the parents toward a solution. Should, however, the problem constitute too great a disruption with the other children or staff, other arrangements will have to be made.
Minor offenses are dealt with in the classroom. Each classroom will provide a copy of the individual classroom policy for the parents.
These offenses include, but are not limited to the following:
A. Striking authority
B. Disobeying rules continually after ample warning
C. Defacing school property deliberately
D. Uncontrollable behavior
Parents will be notified in the event of a major offense. The Administrator reserves the right to expel the child for the remainder of the day.
Biting is a behavior that usually appears between the ages of one and three years. While biting is an age-appropriate behavior, it is important to remember it is also an unacceptable behavior in a childcare environment. Children bite for a variety of reasons: teething, sensory exploration, cause and effect, imitation, crowding, seeking attention, frustration and stress. Biting is not something to blame on children, their parents or their teachers. There are a variety of strategies we implement at Agape’ to prevent and stop biting. This is the process followed when a child bites:
· The biting child is stopped and told, “Biting is not ok. Biting hurts” in a firm voice. Teachers should remain calm, being careful not to show anger or frustration towards the child.
· The biting child is removed from the situation. Depending upon the observed motive for the bite, the separation may include re-direction or meeting the child’s needs. As little attention as possible will be placed on the biting child, to avoid reinforcing the behavior.
· Appropriate first aid will be provided to the child who was bitten. Bite will be washed with soap and water; cold compress will be applied to reduce pain and swelling. A bandage will be applied if necessary.
It is important to explore the reasons for biting when it occurs. Teachers need to work with parents to gather information about the child’s behavior and begin observations to determine the reasons for biting. Examples of triggers would be: communication deficits, transitions, hunger, lack of sleep, need for oral stimulation or teething pain. Once triggers are identified, staff can work on prevention strategies and start teaching replacement skills. Below are the steps the teacher will take to identify triggers and replace the behavior:
1. The teacher will examine the context in which the biting is occurring and look for patterns. The following questions should be asked:
· Was the space too crowded?
· Were there too few toys?
· Was there too little to do or too much waiting?
· Was the child who bit getting the attention and care he/she deserved at other times?
2. The teacher will change the environment, routines or activities if necessary.
3. The teacher will work with the child who is biting to resolve conflicts and frustrations in more appropriate ways
4. The teacher will observe the child, to get an idea of why and when they are likely to bite.
5. The teacher will identify children likely to be bitten and make special efforts to reduce their chance of being bitten.
6. The teacher, parent and Director will meet regularly to regulate an action plan and measure outcomes. 7. If biting continues the teacher will observe the group more closely and work with the parents to seek out additional resources as necessary.
All information is confidential and names of the children involved in the incident are not shared between parents. In addition, biting is always documented on an Incident/Accident Report which is completed and signed by a teacher and parent. A copy is provided to the parent and the original kept in the child’s permanent enrollment file in the office.
Should your child receive an injury which requires first aid, the teacher will complete an accident report which the parent is required to sign and return to the office to be kept in the child’s file.
The information card that you fill out for us is our link with you in case of an emergency. It is very important that these cards are kept up to date. If your phone number, place of employment, etc. changes, we need to know immediately.
In order to keep your child safe, each day care employee is required to have Universal Precautions and CPR training. (Updated Annually)
Arrival & Departure
We use a car pick up and drop off line for our K3, K4 and K5. A map with more information will be in your child’s folder at Orientation night.
All school only students not picked up within 10 minutes of dismissal will be sent to a day care classroom to wait and a $10.00 Late Pick Up fee will be assessed the first time. The second time, there will be a $20 late fee. The third time, there will be a $30 late fee. If the day care classrooms are at capacity, the child will wait in the office. Late fees will still apply. Exceptions will only be made in the case of true emergencies.
For students also enrolled in day care: Clocking In and Out:
Each child has a time card with his/her name on it.When parents bring their child to day care they should be “clocked in” and they should be “clocked out” when leaving.On our time system it is important to follow this procedure because,
ADULTS ONLY ARE TO CLOCK CHILDREN IN/OUT. If you forget to clock your child in or out, please inform the office as soon as possible so we can go in and manually make the adjustment for you. If you fail to inform the office, your child will automatically be clocked in at 6:30A.M., or be clocked out at 6:00 P.M. This will make your charges for the week to be more than they should be. If we catch the mistake, we will contact you, but we do not always catch these mistakes.
Each child will be provided a hook. Hooks will be labeled with your child's name on it. This will be where you will hang up coats. This is also where you will come to pick up your child after school. When it is cold, please make sure to bring hat and gloves and put them in the sleeve of your child’s coat. Hats, gloves and coats that are in backpacks may go unnoticed as the teachers do not check backpacks upstairs, only folders.
Only authorized individuals listed on the child’s enrollment form or enrollment card will be allowed to remove the child from our facility.
Agape’ Learning Center will notify the local police department immediately if an authorized individual picking up a child appears to be intoxicated or impaired, but insists on removing the child from the facility.
Bi-Yearly conferences will take place in October and March. There will be a sign up sheet posted beside the parent board a few weeks before the conference dates. At this time you may sign up for a time to meet with the teacher for a conference. More information will come home closer to those October and March dates. If at any time throughout the year you would like to meet with your child’s teacher about development or any concerns, please set up an appointment though the office.
Each month a newsletter of upcoming events for your child's room will be sent home in their folder. Along with this newsletter you will receive a monthly lunch menu. Teachers will send home notes when your child is running low on supplies or if there is a behavioral issue that needs to be communicated with a parent, etc.
All K-3, K-4, K-5 students are required to be fully potty trained. Please make sure that your child can work all zippers, buttons, or fasteners as they will be expected to use the restroom without assistance.
Please have all of your child’s coats and jackets marked with his/her name, it is very easy for a mix-up to happen. Also, be sure to leave a change of clothes for your child to be left here in case of an accident. Please include underwear, shoes and socks.
Our first priority at Agape’ is providing a healthy, safe learning environment for all children. Children will be sent home as soon as possible if any of the following is experienced: an illness that prevents the child from participating comfortably in activities (as determined by the staff); an illness results in a greater need for care than the staff can reasonably provide without compromising the health or safety of other children in the classroom; or a child is experiencing any of the following conditions:
· Fever of 100.4 degrees or greater accompanied by behavior changes or other signs/symptoms of illness until fever free for 24 hours
Vomiting until it has been resolved for 24 hours
· Signs/symptoms of severe illness, including: lethargy, uncontrolled coughing, inexplicable irritability or persistent crying, difficulty breathing, and/or wheezing
· Diarrhea (not associated with diet changes or medications) until diarrhea stops or the continued diarrhea is deemed not be infectious by a licensed health care professional.
· Blood in stools not explainable by dietary change, medication, or hard stools
· Persistent abdominal pain (continues more than 2 hours) or intermittent pain associated with fever or other signs/symptoms of illness
· Mouth sores with drooling, unless a health care provider determines the sores are not contagious
· Rash with fever or behavior change, until a physician determines that these symptoms do not indicate a communicable disease
· Pink eye (conjunctivitis) until after treatment has been initiated
· Head lice and/or nits, from detected until gone (child will be checked upon coming back to day care and if any nits or lice are found, they will be sent home)
· Scabies, until after treatment has been completed
· Tuberculosis, until a health care provider states that the child is on appropriate therapy and can attend child care
· Impetigo, until 24 hours after treatment has been initiated
· Strep throat, until 24 hours after initial antibiotic treatment and cessation of fever
· Chicken pox, until all sores have dried and crusted (usually 6 days)
· Pertussis, until 5 days of appropriate antibiotic treatment has been completed
· Mumps, until 9 days after onset of symptoms
· Hepatitis A virus, until 1 week after onset of illness
· Measles, until 4 days after onset of rash
· Rubella, until 6 days after onset of rash
· Unspecified respiratory tract illness accompanied by another illness which requires exclusion
A child who becomes ill while at Agape’ must be removed from the classroom in order to limit exposure of other children to communicable disease. An ill child will be sent to the office to wait for his/her parent to arrive. Agape’ reserves the right to make the final determination of exclusion due to illness. Any exceptions to our illness policy will require a written note from a licensed health care professional stating that the child is not contagious.
***If your child will be staying home due to illness, please call the office.
Notices of confirmed communicable diseases will be posted to warn parents of possible exposure on the bulletin board by the time clock.
The giving or application of all medication and carrying out medical procedures shall be done only on written order and/or prescription from a physician or other health care professional authorized to write prescriptions, which must be kept with the medication.
Non-refrigerated medications must be stored in the locked cabinet in the office and refrigerated medication must be stored in the refrigerator used exclusively for medicine away from any access to the children while in use at Agape’. Unused medications must be immediately returned to the family and will not be stored at Agape’. Medications may be administered only by Lead Teachers, the Director, or the Secretary. When a medication is given, the teacher will document the type of medication administered, the dosage, and the time it was given as well as any unusual reactions or circumstances.
With parent’s written approval, centers may use preventive products, such as sunscreens, insect repellents, non-medicated powder, petroleum jelly, and A & D ointment, without a physician’s order.
Children will be served lunch in the designated area in the gym. Teachers will assist children who might need food cut up or condiments. Good eating habits and manners will be taught and encouraged. Since we are State licensed we are required to serve your child a healthy snack and hot lunch If your child is in attendance during our lunch time, even if they are not marked for lunch, we are required to serve them a lunch and you will be charged accordingly.
Breakfast is served at 8:00am during the school year and 7:30 am during the summer.
Snacks or Special Treats:
If you would like to furnish a treat for a class party or birthday, it is required to be a store bought items. Please contact the teacher prior to the day you plan to bring in the snacks.
No objects should be thrown at the ceilings, lights, walls, or fans. Children should not be allowed to play in the table area. No balls smaller than a tennis ball should be played with in the gym.
Hallway and Restroom Procedures:
Children should walk in an orderly fashion in the hallways. Noise should be kept to a minimum. Children should keep their hands and feet to themselves- off the walls and other people.
Children will be well supervised while on the playground at all times. The children are not allowed to sit on top of the monkey bars. The cabin is for children to play inside, not on top of. The children are required to swing while sitting on their bottoms. They are also required to slide down the slides on their bottoms. If it is wet and muddy, the children will play on the blacktop area.
Children will be taken outside each day for playtime as long as the temperature is above 25 degrees and it is not raining or snowing. As a rule, children should be taken outside for at least 5 minutes of fresh air every day. Please check the daily schedule for designated outdoor play times.
Classes will have a Christmas, Valentine's, Easter, and 100 Days of School party. Parents are invited to attend. At the beginning of the year, the teacher will ask for volunteers to help out with a craft and a game for each party. Sign up sheets for parties will be posted by the parent board.
Toys are to be brought only for Show-and-tell or other special classroom events. Toys need to be small enough to fit into the child's backpack. Also, toys need to be labeled with child's name. We want to encourage good things at Agape', so we do not allow monster type or any evil looking toys or weapons.
Students are not allowed to bring videos to be watched because Agape' is licensed to show only what we have available on site.
Infant – 4 per teacher
Toddler (under 30 months and walking) – 5 per teacher
2 years old – 5 per teacher
3 year olds - 10 per teacher
4 year olds - 12 per teacher
5 year olds - 15 per teacher
6 year olds - 20 per teacher
Procedures for fire and disaster emergencies shall be posted in all classrooms. Fire Drills will be conducted monthly, as required by state law. Tornado drills are practiced bi-monthly.
Germs are spread very easily among young children. Hand washing is of great importance to help cut down on the spread of germs. Agape' provides disposable towels and antibacterial soap in each lavatory.
Agape’s Hand Washing Procedure:
All adults in Agape’ classrooms need to follow ALL the steps identified below to prevent the spread of disease to children and staff members.
HOW TO WASH YOUR HANDS MOST EFFECTIVELY
• Use soap and warm (between 60 and 120 degrees F), running water
• Rub hands vigorously for at least 20 seconds (sing the “ABC’s”).
• Wash all surfaces, including backs of hands, wrists, under fingernails with fingers pointed to the sink drain
• Rinse hands well with the water running
• Dry hands with a disposable towel
• Turn off water with the paper towel
WHEN TO WASH YOUR HANDS
• Upon arrival in the classroom
• When changing from one group of children to another
• Before preparing or serving food
• After eating food
• Before AND after diapering/toileting a child
• After contact with bodily fluids (vomit, blood, mucus)
• Before and after administration of medication
• Before and after sensory play, including water play
• After coming indoors or returning from a break
• After handling pets
• After using the restroom
WHEN TO WASH THE CHILDREN’S HANDS
• Before eating, drinking or preparing snacks for others
• After eating
• After using the toilet or having their diapers changed
• After contact with bodily fluids (vomit, blood mucus)
• Before and after sensory play, including water play
• After returning indoors from the playground
• After handling pets
Child Abuse and Neglect
All Agape’ staff members are mandatory child abuse reporters. Suspected cases of child abuse or neglect must be reported to the Department of Human Services to:
CHILD ABUSE HOTLINE
Henry County Child Protective Services
Staff members may directly report suspected incidents of child abuse or neglect to the Indiana Department of Human Services and will complete all necessary paperwork. The staff member should inform the Director of the report and together decide whether or not to inform the parents of the report. If an Agape’ staff member is accused of abuse and/or neglect by a parent or co-worker, such an accusation will be reported to the Director and a determination will be made as to whether there is reasonable cause to suspect that a child has been subjected to abuse and/or neglect. If there is reasonable cause, a report must be made to the Department of Child Services (DCS). Agape’ will cooperate with any DCS investigation. In addition, the accused staff member will be informed of the allegations and be given an opportunity to respond to those allegations. Termination of employment after a child abuse allegation is at the discretion of the Director.
Level 3 Provider