Policies

2017 Child Care Center Parent Handbook

Dear Parents:

We welcome and appreciate your interest in the James Island Presbyterian Child Care Center (JIPCCC)! On behalf of the Board of Directors and staff, thank you for entrusting us with the care of your child(ren).

The JIPCCC was developed and continues to operate as a special ministry of love and nurture for children. Our commitment to you, and mission, is to provide a child development program that addresses the varied needs of your child(ren) within a safe, loving, and caring Christian environment.

This ministry includes care for children age’s two (2) to five (5), after school care for children in rising K-5 to 5th grade and a summer day camp program for children in rising K-5 to 5th grade.

Enclosed, please find important parent information regarding the JIPCCC. Should you have questions or if we may ever be of service to you and your family, please do not hesitate to contact us.

It is our belief that God has blessed us with a mission to love and care for your child(ren) and every child who becomes a part of our program…to enable them to grow and develop into their full God-given potential. We seek to serve with competence and compassion, with commitment and loving care…in the same way that our Lord Jesus Christ loves and cares for each of us.

Thank you for providing us the opportunity to share in the life of your family. We treasure this opportunity and look forward to serving you.

THE JAMES ISLAND PRESBYTERIAN FOUNDATION

CHILD CARE PROGRAMS

  • The child-care center provides services for children two to five years of age. This parent handbook contains operational and/or policy information regarding this program.
  • After school care is available for children up to 5th grade who attend private or public elementary schools on James Island. Transportation to/from the center will be provided to/from James Island schools by our center staff. Program and fee information regarding this program are available by contacting the after school program director or the director of children’s services.
  • Summer day camp programs are available for children age five to twelve during the summer months. Daily field trips and a variety of activities are included in this program. Program and fee information regarding this program are available by contacting the summer day camp program manager or the director of children’s services.

CHILD CARE CENTER INFORMATION AND POLICIES

REGISTRATION NUMBER (#436)

The James Island Presbyterian Child Care Center is regulated by policies of the South Carolina Department of Social Services, the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control and the State Fire Marshal. The identification number of our child care center is 436.

HOURS OF OPERATION

The center is open from 6:30 AM and closes promptly at 6:00 PM, Monday – Friday.

PROGRAM YEAR

The center will operate on a calendar–year basis. Program policies including weekly fees, vacation leave, registration fees, etc., are effective January 1st.

DAILY ATTENDANCE SCHEDULE

Staffing schedules are developed according to the arrival and departure times of children. At the time of the initial enrollment or annual re-enrollment, parents are required to list the arrival and departure times of their child for each day of the week. You will be expected to follow this schedule as closely as possible. If adjustments are necessary during the program year, a ‘schedule change form’ will be provided. Every effort will be made to grant a schedule change request. It is preferred that children arrive at the center by 9:00 AM in order to be included in the morning instructional or program activities. Scheduled activities (snacks, instructional activities, special projects, etc.) that have already occurred prior to the arrival of a child will not be repeated. Lunch and naptime is scheduled from 11:30 AM – 2:30 PM. Due to the disruption of others, parents/guardians are asked to please not drop-off or pick-up your child(ren) during this block of time.

ARRIVAL & DEPARTURES

(SCDSS Regulation #114-503 F-2)

Parents are required to sign-in your child upon arrival, leave your child in the care of a teacher, and sign-out your child upon departure from the center. The sign-in/out sheets are located in the foyer of the center. Only persons authorized by the parent(s), as listed on the applicable enrollment forms, are permitted to pick up the child. Parents are asked to complete the “Alternate Pick-Up” form to arrange alternate pick up of your child from the center. Anyone picking up your child should be prepared to show proper identification (i.e., driver’s license, photo ID, etc.). To insure the safety of your child, please do not allow him/her to leave the building ahead of you.

VISITORS

(SCDSS Regulation #114-503-F-1)

All visitors are required to register at the center office upon arrival. Visitors will be issued a temporary pass and instructions for gaining access to specific classrooms or common areas in the various buildings or exterior areas of the campus. Parents/Guardians of enrolled children will have full access to their child (unless stipulated differently by court order). The exterior doors to the buildings will be kept locked throughout the day. Parents/Guardians may secure an individually assigned FOB by arrangement through the center director. Visits must not disrupt instructional activities or classroom routines.

PROGRAM ADMISSION

Applications for enrollment are considered without regard to gender, race, religion, sex or national origin. For your child’s safety and in compliance with licensing requirements, all enrollment forms and immunization documents must be complete before your child may attend the center.

COMMUNICATION

It is our goal to develop an effective partnership between parents and staff as we care for your child. We encourage and appreciate your involvement, questions, comments and suggestions. Please feel free to speak openly with your child’s teacher(s) and/or the program manager regarding any concerns or information. Please feel free to call the center (843-795-3137) to check on your child or to arrange a conference. Working with a group of children within a classroom setting is a demanding task. It is even more demanding during off-campus field trips. Parents are welcome and encouraged to volunteer some time to help implement a classroom activity or chaperone a field trip for your child’s class. We do ask, however, that your volunteer support be focused on your own child’s class.

DISCIPLINE

(SCDSS Regulation #114-503 F-3-f)

Discipline at this center consists of positive reinforcement and time out. The use of physical/corporal punishment is not permitted. We believe in establishing firm guidelines within a flexible and caring environment. We believe in helping the child learn self-control as they also learn about respecting themselves, their companions and the property of others through specific instruction, direction or redirection of behavior. We believe children, as well as adults, are not perfect. Parents will be asked to assist the teachers in dealing with specific behavioral concerns. On occasion, specialists may be consulted in our collective attempts to work effectively with a child. If staff members are unable to work effectively with a child due to an unusual behavioral situation, it may be necessary to recommend an alternative care arrangement for the child. If your family is experiencing unusual stress or your child is demonstrating significant behavioral changes within the home environment that may result in changes of behavior at the center, please share this information with your child’s teacher and/or program manager.

CLOTHING

Your child will have the opportunity to experience a variety of activities. Simple, washable clothing will allow your child to participate comfortably on the playground, in the gymnasium or in the classroom. A labeled and complete change of clothing must be kept at the center. Soiled clothing must be taken home and replaced with a fresh set the next day. In order to prevent accidents we require that your child wear shoes with a back or heel strap. Please do not send your child wearing flip-flops or sandals without back straps. It is not unusual to misplace clothing in a child-care center. Please check occasionally in the “lost and found” container if you are missing an item. Because of limited storage space, the lost and found items will be periodically cleaned-out and donated to a charitable organization.

HEALTH & SAFETY ISSUES

(SCDSS Regulation #114-509-B)

Your child’s health and safety are matters of major importance at our center. If your child becomes ill while at the center, you will be notified and requested to pick-up your child as soon as possible. If your child does become ill, he/she will be isolated from the other children until you arrive. We are not equipped to care for sick children. If you are unable to pick-up your child, please send another adult to pick-up and care for your child. This is for the well being of your child as well as all the children in this center. If we are unable to reach you by telephone, we will attempt to contact someone listed on your emergency list. In compliance with DHEC/DSS policies regarding health and safety issues, we request that you do not send your child to the center if he/she has a fever or has had one in the past 24 hours; has a constant cough, wheezing, nasal discharge; vomiting or diarrhea; symptoms of a communicable disease (i.e., sore throat, reddened eyes, fever, abdominal pain). Please notify the center staff if your child is diagnosed with a communicable disease so that precautions or appropriate action may be taken. If the child is well enough to attend the center, but needs prescription medication or over the counter medication during the day, parents must sign the appropriate authorization form.

MEDICATIONS

(SCDSS Regulation #114-503 F-3-e)

Written, signed and dated parental consent is required prior to the administration of any prescription or over-the-counter medication or the administration of specific medical procedures. An individual log will be kept for each medication administered to a child by program staff. Medications must be kept in their original labeled container, placed in a locked cabinet and provided to only the child for whom the medication is labeled.

CARE FOR MILDLY ILL CHILDREN

(SCDSS Regulation #114-529 B)

If a child becomes ill while in care, the parents or guardian will be notified immediately to pick-up the child from the center as soon as possible. During the interim period, the child will remain in the office area, separate from other children, and under constant supervision.

IMMUNIZATIONS

Please note that parents must comply with the South Carolina DHEC immunization laws. The Certificate of Immunization form is available from your child’s pediatrician or the State Health Department and must be on file with the center prior to enrollment.

SUPERVISION/TRACKING

(SCDSS Regulation #114-504-A-3)

Children will be directly supervised at all times by center staff within SCDSS approved staff/child ratios. Staff will account for the presence of all children in his/her class as the children enter and exit the classrooms, building, playground or vehicles. Each teacher will have a tracking chart/clipboard to document each child’s movement in/out of classrooms and buildings throughout the day.

TOYS

In order that children are not disappointed with a broken or lost toy, we prefer that they use the toys and instructional material provided by the center. Please leave all toys at home, with the exception, if interested, of a soft toy for naptime. Also, please do not allow your child to bring money or coins to the center. Not only is there a risk of loss, but coins are also a choking hazard.

NAPTIME

Following lunch, a nap/quiet period is provided for all preschool children. Each child will be assigned his/her own sleeping cot. Please provide a small blanket with the child’s name clearly marked on it. These blankets should be taken home weekly for laundering.

FOOD

Children should eat breakfast before arriving at the center. Occasionally it may be necessary for a child to eat breakfast (provided by the parent) at the center, however all breakfast items must be consumed by 8:00 AM. Lunch (provided by the parent) is served at approximately 11:30 AM, depending on the class. Milk and beverages are provided by the center for lunch and morning/afternoon snacks. Occasionally, the children help prepare and serve snacks as a learning activity. If you wish to donate food items, including special birthday treats, please arrange the snack item(s) with the classroom teachers. We recommend snacks such as fruits, vegetable sticks, crackers, etc. Please label all lunchboxes, cups, Tupperware, etc.

TOILET TRAINING

Toilet training a child must be a joint effort between parents and teachers. Clear expectations and methods of toilet training must be shared between teachers and parents. If parallel efforts are not coordinated between parents and teacher, the results are often frustrating for all parties and prove to be ineffective. Any disposable diapers, baby wipes, and/or pull-ups that are needed for a child must be provided by the parents. These items will be labeled and used only by your child. Due to the physical limitations of the center, only two classrooms are equipped for diaper changing. Children will advance to the three year-old class only if toilet trained. All efforts will be made to assist in toilet training. However, due to our concern regarding age-level and developmentally appropriate class placement, parents of a child not toilet trained at the age of forty-two months will be asked to find alternate child care arrangements.

FIELD TRIPS/TRANSPORTATION

(SCDSS Regulation #1141-505)

In addition to regular on-campus program activities, occasional field trips may be scheduled throughout the year. Parents will be provided a minimum of a one-week notice of off-campus field trips. Authorization forms must be completed and signed by a parent before a child will be permitted to attend a field trip. Transportation will be provided by buses owned by the center. Parents are encouraged to attend field trips and assist program staff by serving as chaperones. Written checklists will be used during all field trips to account for the loading and unloading of all children. Emergency information for each child, as well as first aid kits, will be included on all field trips.

PHOTOGRAPHS

Photographs of children enrolled in our program may be taken from time to time and may appear in newspapers, brochures, on bulletin boards, or in other publicity material. Your permission to take and use photographs of your child, without compensation, is part of this agreement.

CONFIDENTIALITY

(SCDSS Regulation #114-503-A-3)

Staff will maintain confidentiality and respect the family’s rights to privacy, refraining from disclosure of confidential information. Disclosure of children’s records beyond family members, program staff and consultants having obligation of confidentiality shall require written parent/guardian authorization. However, when staff have valid reason to believe that a child’s welfare is at risk, it is permissible to share confidential information with agencies and/or individuals who may be able to intervene on behalf of the child. Children’s enrollment files, immunization records and all applicable reports and correspondence will be maintained in a locked file cabinet.

EVACUATION

(SCDSS Regulation #114-505-H-3)

In the event of a fire, natural disaster or threatening condition that may pose a health or safety hazard, children will be lead from their classrooms to the outside playground, sanctuary or hallway of McAllister Hall, depending on the specific situation. Should a situation arise creating the need to leave the campus, buses will be used to transport children to St. James Presbyterian Church located at 1314 Secessionville Road, James Island.

SUPPLEMENTAL ACTIVITIES

There may be optional, supplemental activities provided by independent contractors during the year such as gymnastics, art, computer, dance, piano, etc. Information regarding the scheduling and cost of these activities will be provided. Currently ‘Stretch-N-Grow’ is provided for all children on Mondays at $7/month.

BIRTHDAY CELEBRATIONS

We understand the importance of this special day in your child’s life, and wish to celebrate it with him/her. However, we ask that celebrations be limited to a small treat (cake & ice cream) to be served during the afternoon snack in your child’s classroom. Please let your child’s teacher know in advance if you will be providing a treat. Due to increased liability and added staff responsibilities, the center will not permit the use of the gymnasium or playground to hold birthday activities such as jump castles, pony rides, etc.

HOLIDAYS

The center will be closed on the following full days during the year: New Year’s Day plus one day, Memorial Day, Independence Day, Labor Day, Thanksgiving Day plus one day, and Christmas Day plus one day. We will also close at 1 PM on Good Friday.

OTHER CLOSINGS

The center will follow the schedule of the Charleston County School District regarding school closings due to inclement weather. This includes full day cancellations or early dismissal.

EMERGENCIES

(SCDSS Regulation #114-505-C)

If a child needs emergency treatment, the program manager or other staff member will immediately call the parent to arrange emergency care (i.e., pick up the child, transport to emergency care, etc.). If we are unable to reach the parent, we will attempt to reach alternate persons listed on the emergency treatment plan of the enrollment form. Should both of these continued efforts fail, staff will take appropriate action on behalf of the child’s health and safety needs. If determined appropriate, staff will seek emergency medical treatment by calling 911/EMS. Should emergency care/hospitalization be determined necessary by EMS personnel, a staff member will accompany the child, with medical/release forms and paper work, to the hospital. If possible, the preferred hospital, as listed in the child’s completed enrollment form, will be requested. Please help us be able to reach you in an emergency by keeping your enrollment information current (telephone numbers, addresses, etc.).

STAFF

Our teachers work in early childhood education because they genuinely care for children. They will work with your child up to forty hours a week! These teachers will be a large part of your child’s early life. Teachers and program administrators are required to take annual continuing education courses to further develop skills and techniques in working with children, ages 2-5. In addition, center staff includes persons who are trained and certified in infant/child CPR and Emergency First Aid. It is important to take time to meet and get to know your child’s teacher the assistant program director and program director.

We are here to care for and instruct your child. The more you share information that will help us better understand the special needs and situations in your child’s life, the more effective we are as teachers. It may be difficult to have a lengthy discussion with a parent while also caring for a class of children. There may be times, therefore, when it is more appropriate to schedule a conference to discuss a concern or situation with a classroom teacher and/or program manager.

CLASS PLACEMENT

Children may be assigned to a particular class based on a number of considerations including their age, developmental level, etc. Our center may have transitional classes, depending on enrollment levels and space availability. For example, there may be a combined class of older threes and younger fours with comparable developmental levels. Class placement is also based on recommendations of teachers and the program manager along with parent input.

LIABILITY & STUDENT ACCIDENT POLICIES

(SC Statute 63-13-210-A-B)

The James Island Presbyterian Foundation maintains both general liability and student accident policies. Proof and/or policy information is available upon request.

FINANCIAL POLICIES

The James Island Presbyterian Child Care Center provides a fee structure based on enrollment classification in one of the following categories:

  • Full-time, Child Care Center
  • Part-time, After School Program
  • Full-time, Summer Day Camp

Full-time child care center enrollees will be charged the full-time rate each week regardless the number of child-care hours actually provided.

Thus, regular full-time child care center enrollee fees are charged for all absences except as follows:

  • Two (2) calendar weeks of vacation per enrollment year
  • Extended illness lasting a minimum of five (5) consecutive days. This requires a physician’s written authorization to return to the center.

In the event you must be away from the center other than for the reasons listed above you will be charged one-half the normal enrollment category rate to reserve your place in the program. This includes extended vacations and lengthy periods during the summer months. We will be unable to hold an enrollment slot longer than a four (4) week period.

We request that you provide a two (2) week notice when your child will not attend the center due to a vacation period. The vacation period, for our purposes, is defined as five (5) or ten (10) consecutive weekdays.

Checks returned to the center from your bank due to non-sufficient funds will be resubmitted only after your approval. There is a $35.00 check fee for NSF returns.

The childcare center closes promptly at 6:00 PM. Parents/guardians who pick up their child after the regular closing time will be charged a late fee of $1.00 per minute, per child. Emergency contact people listed on your enrollment form will be called at 6:00 PM to pick up your child if we have not been notified of delayed arrival. Please notify the center staff should you anticipate late arrival in picking up your child.

Please keep your account up to date. Payment is expected the first day of the service week (usually Mondays). A late fee will be added to your account on Tuesdays if payment has not been received. If fees are unpaid two (2) weeks after the due date, your child will not be admitted to the center until full payment and late fees have been made.

PROGRAM FEES

Effective January 1, 2017

PROGRAM CLASSIFICATION
(One of the following categories)

1ST Child
Weekly rate

Child Care Center $140.00

After School Program $70.00

Summer Day Camp Program $150.00

Annual Registration $75.00

2ND Child
Weekly Rate
Child Care Center $115.00

After School Program $50.00

Summer Day Camp Program $120.00

Annual Registration $NA

A non-refundable annual registration fee of $75.00, per family, is due at the time of initial enrollment (pro-rated) and during the first service week in January. Detailed information regarding our After School Program and Summer Day Camp is available in separate brochures.

The childcare center is operated by the James Island Presbyterian Foundation (JIPF). This organization also operates numerous other ministries including Closet Treasures Thrift Store, Lowcountry Pastoral Counseling Center, Mission House, migrant services, Seed of Hope Farmer’s Market, summer day camps, older adult services and after school programs. A centralized bookkeeping and billing system is used for all these ministries, including the childcare center. Thus, it is possible that the person processing your childcare payments may not know you or your child. To insure proper payment credit, please make your checks payable to “JIPF” and include the name of your child on the “memo” portion of your check. We also checks, cash or credit card payments.

The JIPF needs and accepts material and financial donations throughout the year. Needed donations may include classroom instructional items, crafts items, playground equipment, computers, etc.

Please note that your advance weekly payment is expected on the first day of the program week (usually on Mondays). Payment may be made by cash, check, debit or credit (Visa/MC) card. If your payment is received after this due date, a $15.00 late fee will be charged to your account.

Payment may be placed in the locked payment box located by the sign-in table or given to the asst. program director or to the program director. Please make sure that you receive a receipt for cash payment.

If fees are unpaid two (2) weeks after the due date, you will receive a past-due letter including program termination date. Following the termination date, your child will not be admitted to the center until all regular fees and/or late fees have been paid.

Questions regarding your account should be addressed to Ms. Lauryn Bong, (Accounts Receivable) or Mrs. Louise Hatton-Conway, Director of Children’s Services.