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Policies

 

Teacher/Child Ratios

The Community Children’s Center is an inclusion-based child care setting, serving children 18 months through the third grade. The Center is licensed for 22 toddlers, 46 preschool children, and 36 school-age children.

The ratios of staff to children and maximum group sizes at the Center as compared to those allowed by the state are as follows:

Age Group

18-36 months

3-5 years

School-Age

Center Ratio

1/5

1/10

1/16

State Ratio

1/7

1/12

1/18

The exceptions to this are:

  • Groups of six or fewer preschoolers, kindergartners and school-agers may walk off of Center grounds with only one adult present, except into the Glen. A minimum of two adults must then be in attendance.
  • An adult may take a maximum of two toddlers off Center grounds, except into the Glen. A minimum of two adults must then be in attendance.
  • Naptime ratios may be double the usual number once all children are on their cots.
  • In an emergency (teacher’s judgment), the ratio can be enlarged for the time period required providing expedient care in the given situation.

The maximum number of children allowed per staff member is governed by the ratio requirement of the youngest child in the group. This is specifically adhered to when there is a combination of ages within a group of children. There is one notable exception. When no more than one child, 30 months of age or older, receives care in a group of children of the next older age group, then the maximum number of children per staff member is governed by the ratio requirements of the older age group.

Safety of Children

There is a Medical, Dental and Emergency Plan along with an emergency fire and weather plan and building layout posted in each room. Staff is responsible for knowing all procedures and evacuation routes. Monthly fire drills are conducted.

In case of a general emergency. If a loss of heat, water or power occurs, parents/guardians or emergency contacts will be called for immediate pick-up. In cases of threats of violence or natural disasters, an immediate gathering of the children, exiting onto playgrounds, gathering in the side parking lot and walking to the Miami Township Fire and Rescue building – 225 Corry Street – will take place. Parents/guardians or emergency contacts will be contacted from the township building. Office personnel will call 911 before departure from the Center. A record of the children's' contact numbers will be kept at the township building.

In the event of serious incident, injury or illness. The emergency squad is immediately called. The child's file is checked for allergies and other serious health conditions. Parents/guardians, or if necessary, emergency contacts are notified next. Arrangements are made enabling the child's teacher to remain with the child. Strive to maintain a calm atmosphere. The administrative staff will provide the necessary assistance.

No aerosol spray cans will be used during the hours children occupy the Center.

Accidents. In the event of an injury, an Incident Report will be completed by a witnessing teacher, signed by an administrator and a parent/guardian. The report will be filed in the child's file and a copy provided for the parent/guardian if so desired.

Only children who have completed kindergarten, first, second or third grade participate in trips to the community pool. When school-aged children leave the grounds to go swimming, parents/guardians are notified ahead of time and required to give written permission for participation. The children only swim where trained lifeguards are on duty and Community Children’s Center staff continues to closely monitor and supervise the children. The teacher/child ratio approximates 1:6 during swimming afternoons at the community pool. A staff member certified in first aid always accompanies a group of children off site.

The careful supervision of children is of the greatest importance. The teachers of the Center will ensure that the children are supervised at all times in accordance with the rules of child care center licensing for the state of Ohio.

Health regulations aimed at controlling communicable disease require that we not wash cloth diapers at the Center. We are required to put the soiled diaper directly into a sealable plastic bag (zip lock) for parents to take home and clean. Each diaper needs a separate zip lock bag, and parents must send an adequate supply of bags along with the diapers. (This only pertains to cloth diapers.)

Discipline Policy

The goal of the discipline policy of the CCC is to foster the development of self-realization in children. We recognize that every child is an individual with separate needs. At the same time, each child must function within a group of peers. Our philosophy holds that respect for the child is our highest ideal

Children have choices and rights. Participation in activities is encouraged; an individual child's objection or aversion to an activity must be accommodated whenever feasible. Children's responses are used to determine their interests and the meaningfulness of an activity to each child. Children's choices are respected.

Children also have responsibilities. Limits are established clearly for all children with words and through example. They are reinforced on a regular basis. Children are made aware of the basic rules and of predictable consequences, e.g. loss of turn.

"The purpose of rules and routines is to make it possible for the really important aspects of classroom life to go smoothly – the pursuit of intellectual social, physical, aesthetical and moral learning goals." – Lillian G. Katz, PhD

We recognize that some health issues, specifically those related to food, to hygiene and to rest, may be the focus of control issues for some children. It is the responsibility of the teaching staff to separate these issues from the realm of discipline. Food is always provided unconditionally. Children will not be forced to eat or be denied food at meal and snack times. Basic hygiene practices will be taught and reinforced, but issues of hygiene will never be used to humiliate, isolate or in any way punish. Objects that provide security, comfort and rest, such as blankets and pillows, will not be withheld at rest time. Exceptions may be made when an object is being used in a disruptive or harmful manner.

Inclusion

It is the policy and practice of the Community Children’s Center to make every effort to successfully enroll all children regardless of their diverse abilities and to adapt curriculum, environment and procedures to meet individual needs. The program staff is willing to seek extra training, learn from parents/guardians and therapists, and participate in individualized planning as necessary. Research confirms the benefits of placing preschoolers with developmental delays with typically developing peers in the least restrictive environments. We wish to advocate for this important effort. We enthusiastically support the right of all children to actively participate in natural settings within their communities.

Non-Discrimination Policy

This corporation is committed to ensuring equal opportunity and participation to all its members, trustees, children enrolled in its programs, and applicants for employment, consistent with appropriate federal, state and local laws, regardless of race, creed, color, sex, sexual preference, religious, kinship, national origin, marital status, age, handicap, military status or disabled veteran status, in regard to any position for which an individual is otherwise qualified.

Snacks and Meals

Nutrition is an essential part of our program. In the interest of helping children learn good nutritional habits, the Center serves breakfast, a lunch supplement and afternoon snack. The children are required to bring lunch from home. Individual dietary restrictions are upheld.

During the school year, the school-age children receive a breakfast from 7:30 until 8am. The younger children are served a late breakfast from 8:30 until 9:15am. All of the age groups receive the late breakfast during the summer months. Lunch begins at 11:30 and another snack is served at 3:30. Drinks of water are always available. The kitchen meets Health Department standards. Toddlers’ bottles are easily accommodated.

Our standards for lunch foods are upheld in the state licensing regulations and through the Child and Adult Care Food Program. A child’s lunch must contain a food from the following 4 food groups:

1. Milk/Dairy

2. Grain

3. Meat/Meat Alternative

4. Fruit and Vegetables

The Center provides milk or juice for non-milk drinkers. Juice will be provided for children who have a signed statement from a physician indicating that a child is a non-milk drinker. There is absolutely no need to include a lunchtime drink. The teachers request the total absence of sweet, non-nutritious desserts and drinks. In addition, the Toddler Program teachers request an absence of chips and other non-nutritional fillers.

Upon arrival in the morning, the adult family member brings the child's lunch to the Center's kitchen – placing it in the refrigerator or in a bin on the counter. Each classroom has a refrigerator shelf or bin. The lunch bags must be labeled with the child’s name. A lunchtime kitchen assistant distributes the lunches and milk/juice at 11:20. Any desserts or non-nutritious drinks will be removed beforehand. The lunch bags along with used containers, non-perishable leftovers and removed desserts or drinks may be picked up in the kitchen at departure time.

We will be able to accommodate a forgotten lunch but this must not become a habit.

An important reminder to the parents and guardians of our first, second and third graders: The closing of Mills Lawn due to teacher in-service days, vacations or severe weather conditions requires that a school-age child bring a lunch. We will provide a lunch if a child is already here when a school delay becomes a cancellation.

The Center receives USDA funding which helps support the food program. Every family is required to fill out an eligibility form upon entrance and once a year thereafter. This paper work is required by the Dept. of Agriculture regardless of whether a family qualifies. “In accordance with Federal law and U.S. Department of Agriculture policy, this institution is prohibited from discriminating on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, age or disability. To file a complaint of discrimination, write USDA, Director, Office of Civil Rights, and Room 326-W, Whitten Building, 1400 Independence Avenue, SW, Washington, D.C. 20250-9410 or call (202) 720-5964 (voice and TDD). USDA is an equal opportunity provider and employer.”

Weekly menus are available at the beginning of each week. A copy is posted on the large bulletin board by the front entrance. Copies for parents/guardians are located on the shelf at the end of the front entrance hallway.