Mt. Pleasant UMC Preschool Handbook
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Our purpose at Mt. Pleasant United Methodist Church Preschool Program is to provide a well-balanced Christian education that will promote maximum growth and development of each child in a loving and secure Christian environment. By offering a variety of learning experiences and by laying a spiritual foundation, we hope to help each child reach his/her highest potential. It is our aim to encourage and support the development of Christian character traits. In this we consider ourselves partners with the parents.
We offer a Christian-based curriculum. We believe that the children grow spiritually in many ways:
- By exploring God’s wonderful creation
- By celebrating major Christian holidays
- By hearing faith language such as God and Jesus in the classrooms
- By worshiping during Chapel Time
We also follow the guidelines through Creative Curriculum which show us how to implement developmentally appropriate practice activities in the following areas:
- Social/Emotional Development
- Physical Development
- Cognitive Development
- Language Development
Registration Fees & Requirements
We provide quality childcare for children ages 2-4. Children must meet the August 31st cut-off when enrolling. The director will approve any exceptions.
All pre-registration papers and the non-refundable registration fees must be paid for each child prior to the first day of class.
Early Registration Fee ............................... $50.00
Registration Fee after June 30th ............. $75.00
Early Registration fee for 1 day ................. $25.00
After June 30th ......................................... $50.00
Before entering the preschool, the parent/guardian must supply to the director the following:
- Information sheet, signed by the parent/guardian
- Immunization records (as required by N.C. law) must be presented during the first week of class or the child will be excluded from the preschool until documentation is provided
- Registration fee agreement form, signed by the parent/guardian
- Emergency treatment form, signed by the parent/guardian
Mt. Pleasant Preschool does not participate in any federally funded programs. The only sources of income for the preschool are fees and tuition; therefore, it is necessary that all accounts be kept up-to-date. Since our yearly budget and anticipated teacher’s salaries are set in relation to the number of children enrolled, monthly tuition must be paid as long as your child is enrolled. Illness, vacation, snow days, Christmas and Easter breaks and other circumstances will sometimes cause your child to miss several days. Tuition remains the same regardless of the number of days your child attends.
Tuition is due by the 15th of the month. After the 15th, a late fee of $10.00 per child will be charged if tuition is not paid. Late fees become part of the tuition. Should the month’s tuition and late fee not be paid by the last day of the month, the director will notify the parents that the child is no longer eligible to continue until payment has been received.
A $10.00 tuition discount is given for the second child enrolled from the same family.
For parents who would like to pay a full year (September through May) your tuition will be discounted 5%.
No deductions are made for absences due to sickness, family vacations or holidays.
Returned checks will be charged $15.00 per occurrence.
Required Personal Items
Parents with children requiring diapers and/or pull-ups must provide them. We ask that the parents provide a labeled individual box of diaper wipes to be kept at the facility if their child is using diapers.
All children should bring a book bag or tote labeled with their name to help transport any artwork, papers, dirty clothes, etc.
All children are required to wear shoes. For safety reasons, please do not send your child in crocs, flip-flops, or sandals.
Please dress your child appropriately for play. We learn through playing which includes gluing and painting. We try to be careful, but we also stress independence with classroom activities and accidents happen. Teachers prefer that girls not wear body suits as they pose difficulty at bathroom time.
All children need a seasonal change of clothes and socks to be left in the classroom. These need to be in a ziploc bag with your child’s name clearly marked. They will be kept at the center to be used if the child’s clothing becomes soiled or wet. We will notify you when change of season requires change of clothes.
The two-year-old children need to bring a diaper bag and change of clothes daily.
Toys should not be brought to class except by the request of the teacher. They tend to cause problems between children or may be lost or broken. If needed, “comfort” toys or security blankets may be brought in the first few weeks of preschool.
The children are learning to be independent. The food they bring:
needs to be something they can feed themselves
needs to be not too messy
does not need to be heated or cooked
We stress good nutrition and will encourage children to eat protein and fruit before sugary snacks.
We are aware that your child may eat whole grapes or similar foods at home, but we ask that this type of food be halved/cut in order to avoid choking. Please remember to provide a drink. If you forget a drink, we will provide either water or a juice box to your child.
We do celebrate birthdays at preschool, so you are welcome to bring something in for the class.
Our Discipline Policy
Children learn by working out their disagreements. We try to handle all situations in the classroom first. If we find that this doesn’t work, we then redirect the child to other areas of the room. If the problem continues, “Time Out” will be used and parents will be notified if their child continues with the disruptive behavior.
If the child’s teacher and the director believe that a child’s behavior is consistently disruptive, the child’s parent/guardian will be called and will be expected to come to the preschool to discipline the child. Corporal punishment is strictly forbidden even if the parent is willing to permit others to discipline the child.
If cases of repeated disruptive behavior occur, the director will provide a verbal/written warning to the parent. If the child’s behavior does not improve to a satisfactory level, as determined by the teacher and director, the director will dismiss the child.
We will make every effort to make your child’s preschool experience safe and fun in a loving environment.
Excessive and/or aggressive biting will not be tolerated at preschool. If serious biting occurs (deep teeth marks, bruising or bleeding), the child will be discretely dismissed from our program for the safety and well-being of the other children.
Persistent and unresolved behavior problems are also grounds for dismissal. After every effort has been made following our guidelines for discipline the child will be discretely dismissed from our program.
Consistent late or unpaid tuition is cause for dismissal. Speak with the director before this becomes a problem.
Safe Sanctuary Church
Mt Pleasant is a “Safe Sanctuary” Church.
Mt. Pleasant has long been an advocate of children and recognizes their uniqueness as individuals and as children of God. As our United Methodist denomination has asked of us and of which we have supported, we are committed to providing a nurturing, safe environment free from emotional, physical and sexual abuse through what has been called a “safe sanctuary policy.” All staff working with children are carefully screened. This includes our preschool teachers, assistants, Sunday School teachers and anyone working with the youth of the church. Criminal background checks are required. Teachers receive annual training in Infant/Child CPR and First Aid.
Time and Days Open
The preschool is open from 9:00 am to 1:00 pm every day for all the classes. Following a regular schedule is very important for preschoolers. We stress attendance because it gives the child a feeling of security. Our program is set up for nine months and each child is expected to participate the full time; therefore, no refunds will be made for absences. The teachers are preparing and setting up their classrooms for the school day from 8:30 -8:50 am and will not be able to give the child the attention that he deserves before 8:50 am.
We have a keypad installed at every preschool entrance. Only those that have the required code will be able to enter our facilities. This has provided a much safer environment for our preschool. Once your child is enrolled, you will be given an assigned code for the keypad that will allow you access to the building. There is a bell to ring outside the door for visitors and those who forget their code.
Holiday and teacher workdays will follow Catawba County School’s schedule. One or two additional days may be used at the discretion of the Preschool Board to accommodate workshops.
When it becomes necessary for a parent to withdraw his child, it is expected that the parent gives a minimum of 30 days written notification.
The preschool follows the Catawba County School’s (CCS) decision on closing school or delay policies for inclement weather. Please watch for, or listen to, the news reports.
- If CCS is closed and CCS staff are on a delay - we will have preschool. We will follow the directions for the time of delay CCS staff can report to work
- If CCS is closed to students and staff - we are closed
- If CCS is on a one-hour delay — we open at 9:30 am & close at 1:30 pm
- If CCS is on a two-hour delay — we open at 10:30 am - close at 1:30 pm
- If CCS is on a three-hour delay — we open at 11:30 am – close at 2:30 pm
Parents will be notified 2 weeks in advance of make-up days.
Upon discretion of the director, we reserve the right to have two grace days that will not be made up.
Arriving and Departing the Preschool
Each morning, parents will line up in the drop-off area outside the Preschool entrance.
Children should arrive as close to 8:50 am as possible to enable teachers to complete their schedules of activities. Children should be picked up promptly at 12:50 pm.
It is very important to your child that you are on time dropping him/her off in the morning because instructions and learning activities begin at the start of the day.
It can also be frightening to your child if you are late picking him/her up. If, for any reason, you are going to be a few minutes late, call us and we will tell your child’s teacher, who will explain your tardiness, and reassure your child that you will be arriving shortly.
If possible, parents should let the teacher know when a child will be departing earlier than normal so that the teacher can have the child ready to depart.
A child may not leave the preschool with anyone except the child’s parent/guardian. The child’s parent must inform the teacher when someone other than the parent has permission to depart with the child. Proper notice should be in writing when the child arrives at the preschool. In the event of an emergency, the parent must contact the director before the child may be released to someone other than the child’s parent.
When picking up a child, the parent must wait in the pick-up line until the staff brings them out.
Although attendance is not compulsory for preschool, children miss valuable instruction if days are missed. As we are an early childhood education program and not a childcare center, our staff creates lesson plans for each day. It is unfortunate when children miss out on exciting activities. Therefore, we suggest children be present every day unless they are physically unable to attend. Any day that your child will not be in preschool, please call us. We are concerned when we don’t see your child’s smiling face!
Children Taking Medicine
The State of North Carolina forbids the preschool from keeping any over-the-counter medications such as Tylenol or cough syrup. Because we are only here for 3-4 hours, we prefer not to administer any prescription medications unless there is a special circumstance. If your child needs medications during this 3-4 hour block of time, please see the director for arrangements. For children with allergies or asthma that would require medication to be given, an administration form is available from the director.
At Mt. Pleasant UMC Preschool, we believe our preschool should promote healthy behaviors as well as prevent the spread of contagious diseases. In order to do this, we must temporarily exclude sick children from our preschool so that the health and safety of other children in our care is not compromised.
Children who are ill are not permitted to stay at the preschool. The director will make the final judgment to determine if the child is too sick to attend.
Therefore, we will exclude children for the following reasons:
- The child’s illness prevents the child from participating in activities that our program offers for well children or mildly ill children.
- The illness requires more care than the childcare staff is able to provide without compromising the needs of the other children in the program.
- Keeping the child in care poses an increased risk to the child or to other children or adults with whom the child will come in contact.
- If the child exhibits any of the following signs or symptoms:
- Fever: Defined as having a temperature of 100F or higher taken under the arm, 101F taken orally, or 102 F taken rectally
- Diarrhea: runny, watery, or bloody stools
- Vomiting: two or more times in a 24-hour period
- Rash: Body rash, undiagnosed
- Strep Throat: can return 24 hours after antibiotic treatment has begun
- Hepatitis-A: viral infection; can return one week after onset of illness of jaundice
- Impetigo: can return 24 hours after antibiotic treatment has begun
- Severe Coughing
- Lice: Can return 24 hours after treatment has been given; there must be no nits in the hair when the child returns
- Eye Discharge: thick mucus or pus draining from the eye, or pink eye
- Nasal Discharge: that is discolored
- Eyes: Yellowish skin or eyes
- Misc: Child is irritable, continuously crying, or requires more attention than the staff can provide without harming the health and safety of other children in their care
If your child is sick, please do not give medication to simply control the symptoms. In most cases, the child will run a fever after the medication has worn off and is still contagious to the other children and teachers. If your child becomes sick while at preschool, you will be called and asked to pick him up immediately. Children may return after they have been symptom free for 24 hours.
Also, see the COVID-19 Policy included in the packet.
Tips for Separation Anxiety
When preschool begins, it can be an exciting but difficult time for you and your child. Your child will seem eager in the beginning but may suddenly realize you will not be there and cry for you not to leave. This is normal. Most children have little difficulty adjusting to the school if a few suggestions are followed:
Please bring your child the day of Open House.
During drop-off, encourage your child to go with the staff into the preschool.
Upon arriving, give your child a hug and say it's time to leave and that you will be back. It is important that you leave without temptation of staying if your child begins to cry.
Usually, children adapt to a new routine within 10 school days.
Our Additional Preschool Programs
Pastor Mark provides a brief devotion to the children each month. We gather in the Sanctuary to learn about Jesus and important lessons from the Bible. The program is provided to all children that attend Mt Pleasant UMC Preschool.
This is an early childhood physical education, nutrition and wellness program that Miss Hilary teaches each month. The kids learn to exercise while being encouraged to make healthy food choices. This program is provided to all children that attend Mt. Pleasant UMC Preschool.
KIDS LOVE MUSIC
We also provide Kids Love Music for all classes. This is an optional music program that Miss Rose teaches each month. The fee is not included in your child’s tuition; therefore, if you choose to have your child participate, you will need to pay the instructor, Rose Bibeau. The cost is $7.00 per 30 minute class.
Monthly Rates (all class times are 9 am - 1 pm)
2 year olds class:
Mon & Wed (2 day) ............................ $137
Tues & Thurs (2 day) .......................... $137
Mon, Wed, Fri (3 day) ........................ $185
Tues, Thurs, Fri (3 day) ...................... $185
Mon-Fri (5 day) .................................. $312**
Fri only (1 day) ................................... $69
3 year old class • 4 year old class
Mon, Wed, Fri (3 day) ........................ $185
Tues & Thurs (2 day) .......................... $137
Mon-Fri (5 day) .................................. $312**
- Tuition is due by the 15th of every month or you will incur a $10.00 late fee
- Classes are not pro-rated for time missed
- $10.00 Discount for Second Child
- 5% discount for parents paying (September – May)
**$10.00 discount has been applied to Mon-Fri (5 day) classes.
2020-2021 PRESCHOOL BOARD MEMBERS
Preschool Director .............................. Amy Howard
Pastor ................................................ Rev. Mark Muckler
Preschool Board Chairperson ............. Donna Bone
Parent Representative ......................... Jessica Little
Members At Large:
Parents are responsible for reading newletters and notes from your child's teacher and the director. We also communicate through our Procare App with parents. Each class has a private Facebook Page where the staff share information frequently. Public information will be shared through our Preschool Facebook page.
Child Abuse and Neglect
If at any time the teacher or director reasonably suspects that a child has been abused or neglected by the parent or guardian, it will be reported to the appropriate authorities.