Summary of Policies

 

CHILD DISCIPLINE POLICY

At Cold Lake Montessori Daycare & School Corporation, hereinafter referred to as Cold Lake Montessori, we maintain a zero tolerance policy for abuse of any kind. We never inflict or cause to be inflicted any form of physical punishment, verbal or physical degradation or emotional deprivation. We never deny or threaten to deny any basic necessity, or use or permit the use of any form of physical restraint, confinement or isolation. Corporal or shame-based punishment by any member of staff is not permitted at Cold Lake Montessori, under any circumstances. The staff is only permitted to use positive, non-violent methods to reinforce ground rules. In the event of a problem, disciplinary action taken is always reasonable in the circumstance.

Children are not permitted to scratch, kick, bite, hit or harm another child or staff member. Any incident is taken seriously, behavior is recorded, parents are informed and a meeting is scheduled.

If after the meeting the child continues to hit or hurt another student, or a member of staff, we will contact the parent or guardian and ask that they immediately pick up their child. Together, family and school will work to resolve this problem. However, if a child continues to put the other children or staff at risk, the child will be withdrawn from our program.

Our parents are made aware of this policy at pre-registration interviews, our staff is made aware of this at our staff orientation and our children are made aware of this policy in the first six weeks of every new academic year.

 

 

OFF-SITE ACTIVITY and EMERGENCY EVACUATION POLICY

Cold Lake Montessori will have a limited number of off-site activities planned throughout the school year. The off-site activities are fun and educational for children and require a great deal of planning.

Cold Lake Montessori can only take a child to an activity off the program premises if the parents/guardians have been informed of the activity.

  • Parents will be notified in writing in advance, prior to any off-site activity that leaves Cold Lake Montessori premises.
  • Parents will be informed of the method of transportation i.e walking, taking a school bus, supervision, the adult-child supervision ratios, and what activity is planned for the day in detail.
  • Written consent forms must be completed for each child by the parents or legal guardians prior to the activity. Parents will have the option to give permission by the written consent form for their child to participate in the off-site activity. If a parent does not wish for their child to participate on a field trip, the parent will be required to advise the Director and find alternate care.
  • Parents can address any concerns regarding supervision, transportation, or other safety issues directly with the program director.

 

In case of off-site activities and during emergency evacuations, the program director or staff member will gather and take with her:

  1. Emergency Portable Record for each child
  2. First Aid Kit
  3. Parent sign-in/sign-out forms
  4. Attendance records.

 

ACCIDENT OR ILLNESS POLICY

In the case of an accident to or a serious illness involving a child, Cold Lake Montessori will ensure that:

  1. The child receives immediate medical attention, as necessary.
  2. Every effort is made to notify a parent or an emergency contact, without delay.
  3. The staff completes an accident/incident/illness report and the parent is expected to sign the report.
  4. Accident/illness reports are filed in a specific binder to track and analyze accidents to identify trends and issues.
  5. At the end of each week the Program Director will review the binder for careful evaluation and suggest remedial action to safeguard children from future accidents.

 

INCIDENT REPORTING POLICY

Cold Lake Montessori is obliged to immediately report the following to the regional child care office, using the Incident Report form:

  1. An emergency evacuation.
  2. Unexpected program closure.
  3. An intruder on the program premises.
  4. An illness or injury to a child that requires the program to request emergency health care and/or requires the child to remain in hospital overnight.
  5. An error in the administration of medication by a program staff or volunteer resulting in the child becoming seriously injured or ill and requiring first aid, or the program requesting emergency health care and/or requires the child to remain in hospital overnight.
  6. The death of a child.
  7. An unexpected absence of a child from the program (i.e. lost child).
  8. A child removed from the program by a non-custodial parent or guardian.
  9. An allegation of physical, sexual, emotional abuse and/or neglect of a child by a program staff member or volunteer.
  10. The commission by a child of an offence under an Act of Canada or Alberta.
  11. A child left on the premises outside of the program’s operating hours.

All incidents are analyzed annually and a report using the Incident Reporting Annual Summary and Analysis Report form is submitted to the regional child care office.

 

POTENTIAL HEALTH RISK POLICY

The early detection and management of illness or diseases is essential to providing a safe, comfortable and healthy environment for all children and staff at Cold Lake Montessori.

Where the program director or staff member knows or has reason to believe that a child is exhibiting signs or symptoms of illness including:

  1. Vomiting, having a fever (100 F/37.8 C), diarrhea, or a new or unexplained rash or cough,
  2. Requiring greater care and attention than can be provided without compromising the care of the other children in the program, or
  3. Having or displaying any other illness or symptoms that may indicate that the child poses a health risk to persons on the program premises.

 

The following actions will be taken:

  1. The parent will be informed immediately.
  2. The parent will be expected to arrange for the immediate removal of the child from our program premises.
  3. The child will not be permitted to return to the program premises until the license holder is satisfied that the child no longer poses a health risk to other persons on the program premises. Acceptable evidence may include that a child is symptom free WITHOUT the aid of fever reducing medication for at least 24 hours or 48 hours for a gastric illness (flu- where the child is either vomiting or has diarrhea or a combination of both) and/or in the case of a rash a parent has a physician’s note.

 

At Cold Lake Montessori, we fill out a Health Risk form to document children who are ill. The form contains the following information:

  1. The name of the child.
  2. Date the child was observed to be ill.
  3. Name of staff member who identified the child was ill.
  4. Time the parent was initially contacted.
  5. Name of staff person who contacted the parent.
  6. Time the child was removed from the program.
  7. The date the child was returned to the program.

 

If and when a parent fails to arrange for the immediate removal of a child, we ensure that the sick child is kept as far away as possible from the other children and that a primary member of staff directly supervises the sick child. At our school, we would isolate the child and have him/her remain in our First Aid room, supervised, until he/she is picked up from our premises.

Our parents are informed of the program’s management of children who are ill through a copy of our Parent Handbook. Updates to our handbook are made whenever required and parents are made aware that an updated copy is always posted and available on our website. If changes are made to any policy over the course of an academic year, we always issue hard copies of revised policies to our parent community, to keep them abreast of any changes.

 

SUPERVISED CARE FOR SICK CHILDREN POLICY

To provide comfort for a sick child and help protect the health and well-being of other children, we will ensure that a sick child is:

  1. Kept as far away as practicable from the other children, and
  2. Directly supervised by a staff member until he/she is removed from our program facility.

 

ADMINISTRATION OF MEDICINE

At Cold Lake Montessori, over the counter medications are never administered to children in our care. Only prescribed medication may be administered to a child provided that:

  1. The written consent of a parent has been obtained, including date, child’s name, name of medication, date and time medication is to be administered, amount of medication to be administered, and type of storage.
  2. The medication is in the original labeled container with the child’s name, name of the physician, date of issue, and instructions for administration.
  3. The medication is administered according to the labeled instructions.

 

We will maintain documented evidence that staff have administered medications according to parent consent, including:

  1. The name of the medication.
  2. Date and time of administration.
  3. The amount administered.
  4. The initials of the staff member who administered the medication.

We always ensure that:

  1. All medication is stored in a locked container that is inaccessible to children, and
  2. Medication that may be needed in an emergency is stored in a place that is inaccessible to children.

 

HEALTH CARE

At Cold Lake Montessori health care will be provided to a child only:

  1. If a written consent from the parent has been obtained in the form of a waiver.
  2. If the health care to be provided is first aid.
  3. If it involves the administration of prescription medication.

The school does not administer over-the-counter medication. If children are not well, they should remain at home.

For children with severe allergies or asthma, parents must leave a ventilator and/or Epipen at school. These are stored safely out of reach of children, but within quick access if needed.

 

SMOKING POLICY

Cold Lake Montessori abides by the City of Cold Lake’s Bylaw to ensure that our building is a non-smoking environment. Cold Lake Montessori also promotes this policy to ensure a clean air and air-pollutant free environment for the employees and the children in our care.

At Cold Lake Montessori School smoking is:

  1. Prohibited anywhere on our program premises.
  2. Members of staff and parent volunteers are absolutely prohibited from smoking whenever they are caring for children. This applies to any excursion off the premises, including, field trips, walks, and while at the playground.

 

NUTRITION

At Cold Lake Montessori, we follow the Canada Food Guide when planning the monthly menu. We provide a healthy selection of food from all food groups: fruits and vegetables, breads and cereals, milk and alternatives and meat and alternatives. The cook will plan the monthly menu in advance and it must be approved the Head of the School and/or Assistant Head of School (Director) before being distributed to parents and posted.

  • Parents whose children have food allergies will receive a copy of the monthly menu 3 – 5 days prior to it being distributed and posted in order to make any changes to any lunches or snacks on the menu.
  • The monthly menu will be posted in the hallway across from the kitchen beside the main office, in each of the classrooms, as well as on the school website in the parent section for parents to view at any time.
  • A daily menu, indicating any changes to the menu for the day for lunch and snacks, will be posted in the hallway beside the door to the kitchen.

 

Our Lunch and Snacks:

  1. Our Lunch -Provides food from all 4 food groups
  2. Our Snacks- Provide food from at least 2 -3 food groups
  3. Promote healthy eating
  4. Provide the opportunity to introduce new foods
  5. Incorporate the monthly themes

Healthy Lunch and Snacks are prepared each day by the cook who has taken and possess their Food Handling Safety Certificate. Only employees of Cold Lake Montessori who has taken and possess their Food Handling Safety Course are allowed to prepare and cook food for Cold Lake Montessori. As part of Cold Lake Montessori hiring process, all full time staff, which includes and is not limited to, the Director, Head Teachers, Co-Lead Teachers, Assistant Teachers, and Specialty Teachers (Educational Assistants, Aids) for each classroom must have taken or is will to take a Food Handling Safety Course and hold a Food Handling Safety certificate. This is to ensure the health and safety of the children in our care.

 

  • Snacks and lunch will be brought to each of the four classrooms where children, while being guided and supervised by a teacher in the classroom with a food-safety handling certificate, will be free to serve themselves.
  • Snack is provided to the children at 9:30 a.m. and at 3:00 p.m.
  • Lunch is provided to the children at 11:30 am.
  • Both lunch and Snack is provided in a group setting to encourage children to try new things and develop good table manners. Children are encouraged to try at least a little of everything but the amount of food consumed is determined by the child.
  • Parents who have children under 12 months of age or who require baby food or formulae, are required to provide their child’s own healthy meals and snacks.  This includes but is not limited to baby formulae, baby food, or purred food.  The teachers who are responsible for the child throughout the day or the cook, will place the child’s food into the fridge, if refrigeration is required, and will heat up any food that requires heating at snack time or lunch at lunch time.

 

MANNER OF FEEDING

All children will be seated while eating or drinking within the facility. Under no circumstances will a child be provided with a beverage while napping or resting, this includes bottles for children who still have a bottle

 

CHILDREN’S RECORDS

To ensure the children’s health and safety, an accurate and up to date record in respect of each child will be maintained at Cold Lake Montessori. Parents must ensure that they use an ink pen to sign their child/children in and out, with the arrival and departure times, on the daily sign-in/sign-out sheets.

Accurate attendance records are critical to ensure that all children are accounted for in the event of an emergency. Moreover it helps to make the legal responsibility for the child very clear.

 

These records will include:

  1. The name, date of birth and current home address of the child;
  2. A current, signed and completed enrolment/student record form;
  3. The name, current home address and telephone number of the child’s parent;
  4. The name, address and telephone number of a person who can be contacted in case of an emergency;
  5. If medicine is administered,

➡The written consent of the parent is required, and

➡A recording of the following is required:

  • The name of the medication.
  • Date and time of administration.
  • The amount administered, and
  • The initials of the staff member who administered the medication.
  1. The particulars of any health care in the form of first aid provided, to the child, including the written consent of the child’s parent;
  2. Written confirmation of the child’s health card registration number, immunization record and any other health information provided by a parent, including allergies, if any.
  3. All the above records will be available for inspection:

➡By the director at all times, and

➡By the child’s parent at reasonable times.

 

ADMINISTRATIVE RECORDS

At Cold Lake Montessori, we maintain on the program premises, up-to-date administrative records containing the following:

  1. Particulars of the daily attendance of each child, including arrival and departure times;
  2. Particulars of the following for each staff member:

➡Evidence of child care certification

➡A current first aid certificate, where applicable, and

➡A copy of a current criminal record check (for each volunteer, as well).

 

We also ensure that:

  1. The above-mentioned records pertaining to children, staff and volunteers are available for inspection by the director at all times.
  2. The above-mentioned records pertaining to children, staff and volunteers are available for inspection by the child’s parent at reasonable times, and
  3. The above-mentioned records pertaining to children, staff and volunteers are retained for a minimum period of 2 years.

 

PORTABLE RECORDS

In order to meet with licensing requirements, Portable Emergency Records for each child will be maintained at Cold Lake Montessori. These emergency records are easily accessible to the staff in case of any emergency. These records are taken off the school premises on field trips, during fire drills, during outdoor gym classes and in the event of an emergency evacuation. It is very important that the information on the record is current and complete. Please inform us of any changes in your child’s information as they occur.

Our Portable Emergency Records contain the following information:

  1. The name, date of birth and current home address of the child.
  2. The name, current home address and telephone number of the child’s parent.
  3. The name, address and telephone number of a person who can be contacted in case of an emergency.
  4. Written confirmation of the child’s health card registration number, immunization record and any other health information provided by a parent, including allergies, if any.
  5. The telephone numbers of the local emergency response service including ambulance, fire, police, nearest hospital or emergency medical facility, child abuse hotline and poison information centre.

 

EMERGENCY PROCEDURES POLICY

Education:

Children new to the Cold Lake Montessori will not be familiar with the concept of a fire drill or emergency evacuations.  Their training in evacuation procedures shall begin within the first few days of each term and is practiced throughout the year on an on-going basis.

  1. Staff and children shall become familiar with at least two exits in the event one exit becomes inaccessible
  2. Staff shall know the location of the two fire alarm switches in the school and be familiar with their operation.
  3. Staff shall know the location of the fire extinguishers in the classroom and be familiar with its use.

 

EMERGENCY EXITS ARE POSTED AT EACH EXIT, EVACUATION PLANS ARE LOCATED IN EACH CLASSROOM AND THROUGHOUT THE BUILDING.

 

Fire & Evacuation Plan:

Responsibility:

1. Cold Lake Montessori:  The daycare will retain responsibility of the children on the premises until they are released to a parent, guardian, or other designated person, or until they have been transported to an official evacuation centre, in which case selected staff will remain with the other children until they have reunited with their families.

2. Staff:   All staff will remain with the children until all children have been released into the parent or guardian’s care. Staff will be subjected to whatever tasks are assigned by the person or persons in charge, and may not leave the premises until the Program Director or persons in charge have given them official permission to do so.

3. Parent Volunteers:  Parent volunteers will be asked to assist with the evacuation of the younger children or any other child that may need special assistance. They will also be asked to follow the instructions of the Program Director or any other responsible member of staff.

4. Parents: Parents should not telephone the school; they should listen to the radio or television for progress reports on whatever disaster is taking place.

Parents should follow official instructions relayed by officials. If parents are able to reach the school without danger to themselves or without interference with disaster workers, they should come to pick up their children. Children will be released only to parents, guardians, or other designated persons known to them or their parent guardians.

 

In case of FIRE, NATURAL DISASTER OR BOMB THREAT:

  1.       Save lives – evacuate any persons in immediate danger.
  2.       Staff calmly line-up up at the Fire Exit door. Secondary exit plan: front door.
  3.       One staff member to remain at the front of the line.
  4.       One staff member to remain at the back of the line.
  5.       Program Director to gather:

•Parent sign-in/out forms

•Attendance records

•Portable Emergency Records

•First Aid Kit

  1.       Before exiting, the Program Director will conduct a head count to ensure all children are accounted for
  2.       When all children are accounted for, staff member to lead exit line, one staff member to follow at the end of the line.
  3.       Program Director to check for stragglers in washrooms and other out-of-the-way locations and confirm the room is empty.
  4.       Staff and children shall move away from the building, leaving entrances and exits clear.
  5.    Staff and children will gather in the pre-designated area (Bed and Breakfast building next door.).

 

After Evacuation:

  1. Once safely outside, Program Director to take attendance and confirm all children are present.
  2. Staff member to conduct a head count.
  3. Person in charge to reassure children of their safety.
  4. First Aid administered if necessary.
  5. Building is not re-entered until officials give permission.

 

Evaluations:

Following the emergency, an evaluation by all staff in order to spot any areas of weakness or oversight to be reminded in future emergencies.

 

Evacuation:

In the event of an emergency situation that requires an evacuation of Cold Lake Montessori facility, and after the attendance and head count is done to confirm all children are present and accounted for, the following plan will be implemented:

  1. Staff will calmly walk the children to the Lakeside Baptist Church directly across the street from Cold Lake Montessori. At which time attendance will be taken again to ensure all children and staff are present. In extreme conditions the children will be taken inside the Lakeside Baptist Church.  The physical address of  Lakeside Baptist Church is 304 10th Street, Cold Lake, Alberta, T9M 1A5. (Telephone Number: 780-639-2062).
  2. Children will remain accompanied by teacher(s) while parents/emergency contacts are notified of the situation and arrangements are made for either the transporting home or care of children for the remainder of the day.
  3. In the event of exposure to toxic materials, gases, flooding, etc., and a physical examination is recommended, children will be transported by ambulance/police cars to the Cold Lake Health Care Center located at 314 25 street, Cold Lake, Alberta, T9M 1G6 (Telephone Number: 780-639-3322).

In the event of a major emergency which is more widespread and encompasses a larger area (neighborhood, several building/homes) due to a non-confirmed environmental threat, e.g. toxic materials/fumes from a spill, floodwaters, brush wires etc., and the children cannot remain in the area, the children will be brought to Nelson Heights Middle School located at 2035 5th Avenue, Cold Lake, Alberta, T9M 1G7. Parents/guardians would then be notified and arrangements made for either transportation home or continuation of care.

 

 

SUPERVISION POLICY AND PRACTICES

At Cold Lake Montessori, with our low student-staff ratios, the children are under effective supervision at all times to ensure their safety, well-being and development. The Program Director plays a very pivotal and active role in the daily delivery and administration of the program.  She is physically present to ensure that all the primary staff observes children’s play and behavior, both indoors and outdoors.  She works alongside the primary staff and so she is in a position to directly observe the primary staff, which allows for immediate, constructive and accurate feedback.

 

All new members of staff must attend a three-hour orientation at the school to familiarize themselves with the school’s policies and procedures. The orientation is carried out by the program director and includes a tour of our indoor and outdoor physical environments.

 

We promote child safety and reduce injuries in a variety of ways but most importantly with the following policies and procedures that outline our supervision practices:

 

  • We ensure (on a daily basis) that the doorbell and the safety alarms installed on all of our doors leading to outside are in good working condition.
  • We regularly conduct safety checks of the facility and equipment to identify and remove hazards.
  • We arrange our Montessori materials, equipment and areas in a manner that allows for supervision of the children’s work, play, rest and toilet areas.
  • We ensure the safety and well being of all children and would never place a child in a situation that could cause harm to them.
  • We always accompany children who are under 3 years of age to the toilet and help them with toileting.
  • We are aware of which individuals are authorized to pick up a child from the program in place of a parent.
  • We observe when children arrive and leave the program on a daily basis, to ensure that the children are signed in and out and that the parents record accurate arrival and departure times.
  • We record the actual departure and arrival times of outdoor playtime and field trips.
  • We take a daily attendance of the children. We establish simple rules for the children (for example, when we are indoors we walk, when we pass a pair of scissors we pass it safely).
  • We are aware where emergency medications, first aid kits, emergency contact numbers and emergency portable records are kept.
  • We monitor the children both indoors and outdoors, by:

➡Directly observing them when carrying out activities that may involve some risk such as transition times, when they are engaging in exercises related to scissor manipulation skills;

➡Closely observing their play to anticipate and intervene in the event of potential danger;

➡Listening closely to all children, especially those that are not within our direct line of sight;

➡Positioning ourselves strategically to allow for the supervision of an entire group of children;

➡Monitoring children’s health to identify early signs of fever, illness or unusual behavior; and

➡Watching and participating in children’s play to ensure they are playing in a safe manner.

  • We maintain children to staff ratios at all times. To ensure that we have adequate adult supervision of the children at all times, we try our utmost to replace a sick member of staff with a sub. Failing this, the program director will request a parent volunteer to come in and help for the duration of the program.
  • Our primary staff and specialist teachers are aware that they are not permitted to carry out activities like administrative tasks (with the exception of communication books, informing parents of their child’s day), general cleaning, texting, using their cell phones or other electronic devices and personal reading, while caring for the children, as these activities tend to draw their attention away from active supervision.  Staff may use their cell phone to play music for the children, if it has been approved by administration,  or to check the weather/temperature prior to going outside to play if it is not posted on the “Community Resources” board.
  • Primary staff and specialist teachers, which includes but is not limited to the Director, Head Teachers, Co-Lead Teachers, Assistant Teachers, Specialty Teachers (Educational Assistants, Aids) Substitute Teachers, will always put the best interests of the child first. Ensuring each child is properly cared for throughout the day.
  • We use a consistent system during head counts, which we do during all transitions, when children leave or return to our facility for off-site activities, and when children enter or leave a vehicle.
  • In addition to the program director, and primary staff, we take a full compliment of parent volunteers on all our off-site activities. We contract a large yellow school bus from First Student Canada and our parent volunteers ride the bus with us to and from the locale.

 

Our caring and dedicated staff is very involved and familiar with the children in our care. We assess our supervision practices on a regular basis to ensure that they always promote children’s safety and meet their developmental needs. The full compliment of our Montessori materials, our library books, our games, toys, and gym equipment are all age-appropriate and meet the development needs of the children in our care. If a child is observed engaging in activities that place him/her or others in danger (for example, climbing on furniture, throwing Montessori materials or toys) he/she is immediately removed from the situation. We immediately provide an explanation to the child to make him/her understand why he/she is being removed and a discussion regarding the child’s unacceptable behavior is had with the child. Our staff members are encouraged to always praise or comment on safe behavior so that children learn that positive and safe behavior is appreciated. The overall effective supervision by the program director and the primary staff reduces the risk of harm to children by preventing injuries and accidents. This translates into a positive, responsive and safe learning environment for the children and helps to meet their developmental needs.

 

Additional policies are also found in the parents registration package, they include but are not limited to the Financial Fees & Summary of Financial Policies, Summary of Anaphylactic Allergy Policy, and Withdrawal & Refund Policy. The Parent Handbook is currently being updated and will be ready by September 1, 2016. The parent handbook will include other policies or information for parents.

If parents have any questions or concerns regarding any of the policies they should speak with either the owner, Kimberly Clarke or the Director, Rachel Ripkens.

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