Smiling Faces Academy - Family Handbook - Minneapolis, MN
Smiling Faces Child Development Center - We provide quality child care focusing on self esteem- self conf
 

SMILING FACES ACADEMY

FAMILY HANDBOOK – PROVIDER POLICIES

Mission Statement Smiling Faces Academy staff strives to provide the highest quality of Childcare and educational service that promotes and enhances each child’s development; while assuring our parent’s peace of mind in the care and services we render.

Our program focuses on building positive self-esteem, self-confidence and positive body image in each child. We promote and model healthy eating lifestyles, along with incorporating healthy practices into daily meals and curriculum. We promote and model active movement through physical fitness and integrate movement in our schedule throughout the day. 

Educational Methods - Each lesson plan has specific early learning approaches that are outlined by Minnesota’s Early Learning Guidelines using Early Childhood Indicators of Progress (ECIPS) and include a wide variety of activities. In addition to ECIPS for class objectives, Smiling Faces Academy uses 123 Learn Curriculum as developmental and learning tool. Smiling Faces Academy also participates in the MN Reading Corp program. We encourage theme-based learning that includes holidays, special events, shapes and sounds, colors, numbers, the alphabet, manners and much more.

Smiling Faces Academy uses a variety of learning materials that are available from along with the wide variety of backgrounds and experiences our great staff has brought with them to enhance and expand your child’s learning.

Smiling Faces Academy is committed to providing the highest quality of childcare, early education and partnerships with parents.  We commit to keeping constant communication with our families through newsletters, parent boards, and parent teacher conferences.  We support an open door policy and invite families’ participation in their education.

Smiling Faces Academy ensures you that safety is our number one priority.  We are committed to providing a safe environment for your child.  All children will be supervised within child/teacher ratios.   Children will be within sight and sound of teaching staff. School-age children will be supervised within appropriate state guidelines.

At Smiling Faces Academy smart and healthy kids is our business! 

Childcare program options
*Our Program offers convenient hours for parents work schedules.
 
*We offer short term Drop-in and Night care for children, when space is available.
 
*We use a nationally recognized, research-based curriculum, each week we design learning experiences and the environment to meet the individual needs of each child and ensure that they are ready for kindergarten. 
 
*We also incorporate a special reading program, for toddlers and preschoolers. An outside reading specialist comes in three times a week to engage the children in individual and group reading activities. 
 
*During the day, we spend time outside. Our outdoor play space is an extension of our program, allowing children to expand their play using natural materials and physical activity. 
 
*We are committed to providing the highest quality of care, and we participate in Minnesota's voluntary rating system.
 

*We plan nutritious, balanced meals that exceed the standards of the USDA's
food program. included in your tuition are home-cooked meals using organic ingredients. 

Hours of Operation/Schedule - Smiling Faces Academy is open year-round; January through December (except on listed holidays & days closed) we provide care from 7:00am to 6:00pm, Monday through Friday, however; all families have contracted hours of care, we will always be available during your contracted hours. Example: if we don’t have any families scheduled promptly at 7:00am, we may not arrive until 7:10am or so to be ready for our contracted families that begin at 7:15am.  Part time care is offered Monday-Friday when space is available. Weekend and evening schedules are available. Our daily schedule is posted inside the door and reflects a typical day.

Smoking – Smoking is not permitted on our premises at any time.

Holidays & Closings - New Year’s Eve, New Year’s Day, Good Friday, Memorial Day, Independence Day, Staff Development Days (two per year), Labor Day, Thanksgiving, Friday after Thanksgiving, Christmas Eve & Christmas Day. If one of these holidays falls on a weekend, it will be observed on either Friday or Monday. Smiling Faces may be closed additional days, these days may vary, families will receive a full calendar of closing days for the year, at time of enrollment

Full tuition is charged for Holiday weeks and ALL absent days. Your tuition is based on scheduled enrollment, not attendance, therefore no credit is provided for absences due to illness, family vacations or other times the child is not in attendance.

FINANCIAL POLICIES - Smiling Faces Academy, policy is to charge tuition in advance of the week services are provided. Tuition payments for each and every child enrolled with Smiling Faces Academy are due and payable on Friday morning for the upcoming week. A late fee will be assessed to all accounts that are not current on Tuesday at noon. Credit card payments need to be received by Monday, all credit card payments processed after Monday, will receive a $25.00 processing fee. If Smiling Faces Academy, fails to receive your tuition payment for one full week, your child’s enrollment will be immediately terminated and Smiling Faces Academy will pursue collection remedies for any and all unpaid tuition and associated costs, disbursements, and attorney’s fees.

Families receiving childcare assistance -  If your family receives childcare assistance, and you are obligated to pay a parent portion, half must be paid by the first business day of the month. A late fee of $25.00 will be assessed to all accounts that are not paid in full by the 10 day of the month and every Friday thereafter for any unpaid parent portion, an additional $25.00 will be added every Friday that the parent portion is not received. If the county’s maximum tuition rates are lower than the Smiling Faces Academy, tuition rates, you are responsible to pay the difference. The weekly difference is due on Friday for the upcoming week. It is ultimately your responsibility to ensure that your childcare fees are paid in full and in a timely manner. If the county terminates childcare assistance, it is your responsibility to pay tuition. Non-payment will result in termination of care.

RETURNED CHECKS - A service charge of $30.00 will be assessed on all returned checks. If a second check is returned, your account will be on a cash only basis. Returned checks may also result in late fees being assessed.

TERMINATION OF CARE- Smiling Faces Academy, requires a two-week/14-day notice in writing to terminate childcare. We will also give families a two-week/14-day notice in an event that we may no longer care for your child. In an event that your child becomes violent and may create danger for themselves, other children, or staff member’s termination may be At-Will.  A two-week notice will not be given for non-payment.

Inclement Weather Winter weather guidelines when we will close school. We will likely close if the wind chill reaches -35°F at 5:30 a.m. We closing if 6 inches of snow falls in 12 hours or if 8 inches falls in 24 hours.

In an event that Minneapolis Public School District is closed due to inclement weather, Smiling Faces Academy may also be closed. In an Event that we will be closed, our staff will make every effort to send out an email to each family and update our Facebook page (Smiling Faces Academy) by 5:30am. Please make sure that your email address is updated in our records.

If sirens are sounded or a warning is announced all staff and children will proceed to our assigned safe place. Staff will calmly initiate appropriate activities with the children, all staff and children will remain in the shelter until the "all clear" is announced on the radio.

Admission - Smiling Faces Academy provides childcare to a diverse number of families without regard to race, creed, religion, parent’s sexual preference, cultural beliefs or economic level. Childcare is provided to children from 3 months to 12 years of age. All required form must be completed prior to your child’ first day.

·       Enrollment Agreement

·       Liability Insurance Notice

·       Immunization Records

·       Behavior Guidance Form and Non-Prescription Medication Form

All families will receive a copy of the Family Handbook at time of enrollment and at request.

Additional need specific forms are also available at time of enrollment. If your child is in a special education program through the school systems or any outside agency, we request a recent copy of their individual Education Plan (IEP) or similar documents for inclusion to keep in the child’s file. Please notify us of any special accommodations for your child.

Individual Family Plan (IEP) or Individual Family Services Plan (IFSP) -If a child has an Individualized Education Plan (IEP) or Individual Family Services Plan (IFSP), Smiling Faces Academy shares assessment results with our team with family’s permission. For a child with a special need who is receiving specialty services (for example, physical or occupational therapy), Smiling Faces Academy shares assessment results with service providers with family’s permission.

Pick-Up-Drop-Off Procedures/Arrivals and Departures - Children may not enter or leave our care unless accompanied by an adult. Smiling Faces will only release children to their parents or other authorized adults. It is our policy to ask all unfamiliar adults for photo identification. This is vital to ensure the safety of every child.

The greeting between caregivers and children is invaluable. Many things about the child's health and state of mind can be determined in that brief time. We will then help the child transition into our daily routine.  

To help achieve the goal of allowing your child to become independent, emotionally healthy, and well adjusted, and to maintain safety, please present your child to a staff member. Please be sure that the staff person is fully aware (per verbal communication) that your child has arrived or that your child is departing.

Remember hellos and goodbyes are a part of our everyday routine. Separation should be sweet and brief, with reassurance about the planned pick-up time.

  • Parents should encourage children to make friends and interact with the caregivers and look forward to being at school without feeling guilty or disloyal to their parents.   

Please remember to sign your child in and out each day.

Smiling Faces Academy tries to be sensitive to the needs of the families we serve. If two parents are sharing custody and there is some way that we can help, make this easier (or avoid making the situation more difficult) let us know.

Custody Arrangements - When parents do not reside in one household, the parent listed on the enrollment agreement will be considered the child’s primary parent. Smiling Faces Academy staff will communicate directly with the primary parent. It is our expectation that divorced or separated parents will communicate with each other as needed to meet the needs of their child. Smiling Faces Academy will only release the child’s information to the parent listed on the enrollment agreement unless legal documentation is provided. It is the primary parent’s responsibility to inform us of any custody and or visitation restrictions by providing legal documentation.

What to Bring - Parents of toddlers should bring diapers or training pants, a toothbrush, small tube of toothpaste, a blanket and a change of clothes. Preschoolers should bring a complete change of clothing, toothbrush, small tube of toothpaste and a blanket for nap time. Please be mindful to keep the extra clothing appropriate to the season.

Please don't forget boots, snow pants, hat, scarves and mittens in the winter, we go outside all yea- round. Your child's blanket will be sent home every Friday to be washed and returned on Monday.

Clothing - Children's clothing should be comfortable, allowing complete freedom of movement, washable, and suitable for daily indoor and outdoor activities. Children spend time outdoors almost every day; parents should consider weather conditions when planning daily dress. To encourage development of independent bathroom skills, children's clothing should be easy for them to manipulate with a minimum of assistance. Children must wear shoes, which are practical as well as comfortable. A complete change of clothing should be kept in your child's bin or cubby; shirt, pants, underwear and socks

Personal Belongings - Personal belongings (toys, jewelry, makeup, books, etc.) should remain at home (except for special items needed to smooth the transition from home) this will avoid lost/broken possessions and hurt feelings. We will make reasonable efforts to safeguard children's personal belongings and clothing, but will not be responsible for lost or damaged items. Everything that your child brings to school should be permanently labeled. Candy, gum, electronics and money are not permitted.  

Meals and Snacks - Smiling Faces Academy provides delicious breakfasts, lunches and snacks, prepared on site that exceed the USDA requirements for quantity and quality of the food we serve. All children who are present at scheduled meal times will be served. Our meals offer a wide variety of healthy food each day. We enjoy family style meals our staff sit alongside of children to encourage enjoyable conservation. They are also able to reinforce table manners and the development of healthy eating habits. If your child is present for 10 hours or more a second snack will be served.

Smiling Faces Academy follows are safety protocols required when handling, preparing and serving meals and snacks. Hot foods are cooked to a temperature of 140 F or higher. Poultry, Beef and Pork is cooked to 165 F or higher. Cold foods are kept at 41 F or less; leftovers are reheated to a temperature of 165 F or higher. Milk is served with each meal.

If your child requires a special diet for medical or religious reasons please talk to the Samantha to make arrangements. If Smiling Faces Academy is unable to accommodate requests, parents may need to provide meals or supplements. If you will be providing food to meet your child’s individual needs, all outside food must meet the USDA requirements. 

All outside food must be precooked and labeled with the child’s first and last name and the date it was brought to the facility for serving. If it requires refrigeration it must be given to a staff member upon arrival with instructions.

Celebrations, Holidays & Birthdays – Smiling Faces Academy Is a multicultural community of people from diverse backgrounds.  Our activities, programs and everyday interactions are enriched by our acceptance of one another, and we strive to learn from each other in an atmosphere of positive engagement and mutual respect.  Sharing family traditions and holidays is an important part of our curriculum.  Celebrations and holidays are shared with the children as special events and as part of our on-going program.  Families are encouraged to share their traditions.

We would love to celebrate Birthdays with your child! Teachers will incorporate each child’s celebration into the activities on their special day. Please notify the staff if you will be bringing in snacks for your child’s special day. Birthday parties will begin at 3:45pm, each child will receive a birthday crown, and birthday certificate, a special gift and the class will sing “Happy Birthday” to your child. Please choose nutritious snacks and all snacks must be commercially packaged.

Biting Policy One of the most upsetting yet normal behaviors of early childhood is biting.  When toddlers and young preschoolers bite, their social skills are still limited. It is difficult for young children to distinguish between what is loving behavior and what hurts.  When an older child bites, it is usually a means of expressing emotions.  Young children do not have a social conscience, as we know it.  They may fully understand that when they bite, someone cries; but they have not yet connected all of the social consequences. 

Parents/guardians will be notified if their child has been bitten and of the procedures teachers have taken.  The name of the child who did the biting will not be included when informing the parent of the incident.  If the bite has broken the skin, it will be washed with soap and water. Parents/guardians will be notified immediately and requested to call their child's physician for further instructions. 

If biting becomes an ongoing behavior, Samantha will talk with parents and together they will carefully analyze the circumstances. Anecdotal information noting when the incident happened, where it happened, what precipitated the bite, who was involved, and the times of day the biting occurs will be recorded.  A staff member will be assigned to stay in close proximity to the child to interrupt the biting behavior before it happens and to provide needed support.  Reasonable action will be taken to modify the environment, routines or interactions within the group, to help diminish the biting. 

Allergies - Families are expected to notify the program regarding any food or environmental allergies that their child may experience. Parents/guardians of children with diagnosed allergies or asthma are required to provide a detailed Action Plan or RAD form, signed by the child’s physician. A list of children’s allergies will be posted near eating area and in the kitchen. Staff members are trained to become familiar with the list and to consult as appropriate to avoid the potential of exposing children to substances to which they have known allergies.

Administering Medication - To ensure the comfort of each child, Smiling Faces Academy staff is able to administer over-the counter medications at the parents’ request. Smiling Faces Academy must obtain written permission before administering any non-prescription or prescription medications. Before Smiling Faces Academy staff will administer medication, whether prescription or over-the-counter, we will need to obtain written permission from the parent. 

Families must complete the appropriate medication form, which includes dosage amount, frequency, product name brand, and parent/guardian signature. Over-the-counter medications often do not provide instructions for children under the age of two; therefore, a physician must complete a special instruction and dosage form. Smiling Faces follows all manufacturer’s instructions for administering all medications. If your child does not meet the guidelines listed in the instructions, a physician’s note and signature is required. 

Smiling Faces follows the recommendation of the FDA and does not administer over-the-counter cold and cough medications to children under six years of age for coughs or a runny nose. Smiling Faces Academy follows the prescription medication procedures listed

·       The prescription medication must be stored in the original container  
with pharmacy label, including possible side effects.

·       The medication must be prescribed to the child receiving it. (Siblings 
may no share).

·       The Prescription medication must not be expired.

·       The Medication must be stored in the centers locked medication
  closet.

First Aid Procedures - At least one staff person trained in CPR and First Aid will be present at all times, they are trained to follow appropriate procedures in the event of an emergency. Parents are notified immediately if an illness or injury requires immediate medical attention. In an event of an emergency situation, we contact 911 first and then we contact the family. An incident report will be completed for all injuries. A copy will be given to the parent’s/guardians including information describing the incident/injury that occurred and the first aid treatment and follow-up that was provided. Parents or guardians will be liable for all fees.

Diapering and Toilet Training - Smiling Faces Academy Follows sanitation and diapering guidelines as outlined by the Minnesota State Health Department, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), and our public health nurse Barbara Stoll. Families are required to bring diapers or training pants and any ointments or products labeled with your child’s first and last name. Smiling Faces provides pre-moistened wipes for your child.

Toilet training will begin when appropriate according to the child’s age and stage of development and in accordance with the parent’s plan. Children who are in the process of being toilet trained will be offered frequent opportunities to use the bathroom facilities. It is best if you to initiate potty training over a weekend or vacation. 

Until your child is totally successful in toileting training, they should wear clothes that promote their independence. The best items are shorts and pants with elastic waists, or dresses. Try to avoid tight clothing, pants with snaps and zippers and belts, overalls and onesies and stockings or tights. These are difficult for children to remove "in a hurry". Please send 2-3 extra outfits while potty training. While training, children must wear training pants. Staff will use praise and encouragement to make toilet training a positive experience.

Illness - Smiling Faces Academy has established exclusion guideline in accordance with Minnesota Department of Human Services, to protect your child, other children, and our staff from illnesses. If your child needs to be excluded, it is your responsibility to find alternate care. If your child is at Smiling Faces Academy, it is our expectation that they are well enough to participate in activities, including outdoor activities. In an event a child becomes ill while at the facility, we will isolate the child, attempt to contact the parent or guardian to pick up the child, or contact an authorized person to pick up the child if we are unable to reach the parent or guardian. We expect that an ill child will be picked up within one hour of the parent or guardian being notified.

We will notify parents immediately if your child develops any of the following symptoms. A child with any of these symptoms must remain out of childcare for at least 24 hours after the last episode and 24 hours after their temperature returns to normal. Remember, if your child is ill, they are most comfortable at home.

·       Have an oral temperature of 101 F or higher or an auxiliary (armpit) 

        temperature of 100 or higher, your child should stay home until they 

        are fever free for 24 hours without the aid of fever-reducing 

        medicine.

·       Have vomited two or more times since admission that day.

·       Have contagious pink eye (conjunctivitis) or drainage from the eye.

·       Have any rash that may be disease-related or the cause is unknown, 

        please check with a physician before sending your child to school.

·       Have had three or more loose stools since admission that day

·       Have a bacterial infection such as streptococcal or impetigo and have 

        not completed 24 hours of antimicrobial therapy

·       Have unexplained lethargy

·       Have lice, ringworm, or scabies that is untreated and contagious to 

        others.

·       Are experiencing significant respiratory distress

·       Are not able to participate in the childcare program activates with 

        regular comfort

·       Require more care than the program staff can provide without 

        compromising the health and safety of other children.

Rest and Nap/Quiet time - Rest and nap times are part of your child’s day at Smiling Faces Academy, a Pack-N-Play is provided for Infants and a cot is provided for all other children, and is arranged appropriately as required by the Department of Human Services. Please provide a blanket, stuffed animals are welcome. Separate blankets must be provided, for each child, blankets will be sent home every Friday to be washed or when soiled or wet. The light will be turned off and soothing music will be played

After a 30-minute rest period, children are allowed to get up and may participate in quiet activities. Children who are napping are able to sleep peacefully until nap time is over.

Please try to avoid drop-off during quiet time this may disrupt the children. Parents who pick up during Nap Time should be respectful of other children who are resting. (Please note: Smiling Faces Academy believes it is developmentally inappropriate to wake children from sleep, unless they are leaving for the day).        

Safety - The following safety precautions have been established to ensure the safety of children and caregivers:

Smiling Faces Academy is a locked facility for you and your child’s 
safety. Someone will always be available to let you in during business hours. Be aware of unfamiliar or suspicious individuals standing in the entrance or parking lots.

  • An attendance checklist will be used during safety drills and in the event of an evacuation.        
  • At least one staff member who is trained in First Aid and CPR is present during all hours of operation.
  • Staff will check room and equipment daily
  • All toys and equipment will be disinfected daily.

Emergency and Evacuation Plan - In order to maintain a safe environment for each child, Smiling Faces Academy will make every attempt to be prepared for potential emergency situations. We regularly practice emergency lock downs, evacuation drills, and emergency storm drills (parents present are welcome participate in the drill). All Smiling Faces Academy staff is trained in handling emergency situations. In an event of an actual emergency, parents or guardians will be notified after the children have been relocated to a safe area.

Visitation - We recognize and support parent’s desires to see and spend time with their children whenever they can. If parents or guardians would like to stay and visit or volunteer, we will need to conduct a background check, SUID (Sudden Unexpected Infant Death) and AHT (Abusive Head Trauma) training is required.

Discipline & Guidance - Discipline is not "punishment," but a means of learning and teaching self-regulation and self-control. We believe children learn acceptable behaviors by what is modeled around them.  We use positive discipline to guide, encourage, and support children. Positive discipline helps children learn how to interact with others and develop self-control. It begins with adult behavior: good limit-setting and clear communication of these limits.

It is based on a mutual respect and an understanding of a child's needs and development. We achieve this by using positive guidance such as redirection, verbalization, consistency, and acknowledgment of feelings, firmness, and fairness. Children are encouraged to express their feelings verbally as well as to discuss and resolve conflicts rather than 'act out' their negative feelings. Children will never be isolated, shamed, forced away or removed from the other children.

Behavior Guidance - Smiling Faces Academy shall provide each child with guidance that helps the child acquire a positive self-image, self-control, and acceptable behavior. Discipline and behavior guidance used by staff will be constructive, positive, and suited to the age of the child.

We will not allow a behavior to continue if it appears that your child will hurt him/herself or someone else or that property will be damaged. We expect our teachers to implement this policy with the constructive techniques listed below:

·       Redirecting the child’s attention from the disruptive behavior to an 

        acceptable activity.

·       Discussing the outcomes of negative behavior, with a teacher sitting 

        or kneeling at the child’s level.

·       Talking it out, with a teacher sitting down and helping the child put 

        their thoughts/emotions into words.

· “Calm down” time when needed, for a minute or two, before talking  

         with the teacher and/or another child.

Calm down times are not punishment. It is a neutral break where the child can regain self-control. Usually a child will have to be helped by an adult to take time out to calm down; ultimately the goal is for the child to achieve the control to calm down by him/herself when feeling overwhelmed in a social situation.

Restraining Children - If a child is physically aggressive and/or threatening another child or adult with bodily harm or endangering the health and safety of themselves or others, and cannot be verbally redirected, Smiling Faces Academy staff may physically restrain a child. Smiling Faces Academy staff will sit if possible on the floor or in a chair and hold the child in a manner, which will not cause harm to the child or the adult. Anytime a child is physically restrained staff will document the incident and talk with the parent either by telephone or upon pick up.

Continued time outs or using restraint to calm down a child will result in the teaching staff to meet with the family to develop a behavior action plan. The behavior action plan will outline the behavior of concern, the developmentally acceptable behaviors we expect to see and the plan of action the center and parent will work towards to achieve a positive change in the child’s behavior. All time outs to calm down are recorded in a Separation Log. Parents may request to see the log pertaining to their child at any time.

Parent Conference & Daily Communication - Smiling Faces Academy schedules conferences twice a year, usually in April and October to discuss each child’s progress, accomplishments and struggles. Staff will also discuss intellectual, social, physical and emotional development. Staff will use Creative Curriculum as a developmental tool. We will have a sign-up sheet to accommodate times to meet with parents/guardians.

Parent/Guardians are also encouraged to request a conference, if needed.

A daily activity sheet will be completed for infants and toddlers. Parents may request daily activity sheets for Preschool age children. Activity sheets include meals, naps, activities, and toileting/diapers for toddlers and any special notes. Parents please don’t forget to complete the top portion of the daily sheet, each day; they are located on the table with the sign in sheets.

Bulletin Boards
There are parent bulletin boards with information concerning center activities, meetings, announcements, health notices and curriculum plans.

Email Communication and Newsletters
Smiling Faces will be sending newsletters and reminders home either by email or by putting them near sign-in sheets to keep families informed about the program, parent events, classroom activities and general information and reminders of interest to all families. Personal information will be placed in parent cubby.

Boundaries
We strive to have close yet professional relationships with the families that we serve.  Please respect the personal boundaries of staff by not asking to “friend” or follow them on social media sites, or asking for their personal numbers.

Translation 
When necessary, we will provide a translator for communication with parents/guardians if available.

Field Trip - To enrich curriculum experiences and teach children about their community, we take walks throughout the neighborhood. We will follow Minnesota state ratios for field trips; carry first aid equipment, emergency forms, and a cell phone.

Smiling Faces Academy also offers off site field trips throughout the course of the year to supplement our curriculum. A separate fee may be charged for each child to participate. A permission slip will be provided for field trips outside of the neighborhood.

Classroom Pets - Parents/guardians will be informed of pets in the center at time of admission. Staff will care for pets following proper sanitation procedures. All pets will be licensed and vaccinated following local health department requirements. Please inform us if your child has an allergy to animal dander.

Suspected Maltreatment /Mandated Reporting - Each staff member at Smiling Faces Academy is a mandated reporter and required by law to make a report to the proper authorities if he or she has reasonable cause to believe or suspect a child is suffering from abuse or neglect or is in danger of abuse or neglect within the family or in the community. All Smiling Faces Academy staff attends training annually to better identify and report suspected abuse or neglect. The state child protective agency involved will determine appropriate action and may conduct an investigation. 

It is the agency’s role to determine if the report of abuse or neglect is substantiated and work with the family to ensure the child’s needs are met. Smiling Faces Academy will fully cooperate with any investigation and will maintain confidentiality concerning any report of child abuse or neglect. Our primary concern is the safety of each child. Of suspected child abuse or neglect, the law requires mandated reporters to make a report if they know or have reason to believe a child is being neglected or abused, within the preceding three years. 

Staff is required to report to 911 for immediate danger or Hennepin County Child Protection Intake (612) 348-3552.

All such reports must contain the name and address of the child, the name and address of the person responsible for the care of the child, and any other pertinent information.  

Privacy Rights Statement - The enrollment information that you provide will be handled confidentially to protect your privacy. Limited access is available to staff in order to provide the best care possible. Records are also available to the following agencies for effective supervision and operation of the facility:

·       Department of Human Services, Department of Health and Welfare, 

        Hennepin County or appropriate government agencies

·       USDA Child and Adult Care Food Programs (CACFP)

·       Local county community services/agencies

·       Public Health Nurse

All enrollment information is required by Hennepin County, DHS or the appropriate government agency and is necessary to provide care for your child under state guidelines. Failure to give this information will prevent your child from attending our childcare program.

Grievance Policy -Young children often react poorly to changing their caregivers, causing upset disruption and concerns for parents. It is important that parents have a viable alternative to dealing with issues that arise with their child's care and education, without having to move their child to another program. Smiling Faces Academy asks that parents/guardians share any concerns that may arise, or any suggestions that may aid in your child's education. Each family has a right to a positive response, to meet the families’ particular needs. Parents/guardians may request a conference. 

A)    Responsibilities of parents are to do nothing that diminishes the reputation of the program. Remember that defamation is the act of making a statement about a person (or institution) that is considered to harm their reputation. It is our expectation that parents will not post, re-post, or share any negative or diminishing information referring to Smiling Faces Academy or individuals referred to as staff of Smiling Faces Academy in print, on any social media site or any other internet forums. Failure to abide by this expectation may result in immediate termination/withdrawal of your child from our program.

B)    Purpose of Grievance: to ensure that each parent/guardian feels empowered to raise concerns about all aspects of the operations of the child care home.

To ensure that each parent/guardian feels empowered to raise contentious issues, and provide critical feedback without any concern that their comments will lead to any victimization of prejudice to themselves or their child.

To encourage staff to be responsive to the needs and concerns of families and their children; thus helping to develop and refine our service and its practices and procedures.

To encourage both negative and positive comments and responses from parents, that can lead to improvements in service quality.

To focus on the needs of children and their families with the intent of resolving the grievance to their reasonable satisfaction wherever possible.

C)    Smiling Faces Academy will ensure that staff members (helpers, volunteers, substitutes, and providers) understand and are in compliance with the Grievance Procedure and are made aware of Smiling Faces Academy’s philosophy of encouraging and valuing family input. Attempt to resolve issues within one week, and ensure no disadvantage occurs for the child, family or families involved.

Drug and Alcohol Policy – The license holder, providers, helpers, substitutes, volunteers and subcontractors, when directly responsible for persons served by the program, will not abuse prescription medications or non-prescription medications, or alcohol; or be in any manner under the influence of a chemical or substance that alters the individual behavior, mood or impairs the individual’s ability to provide services or care. Samantha will train all staff regarding our programs drug and alcohol policies.

No staff member including the license holder, providers, helpers, substitutes, volunteers and subcontractors, will use any prescribed or non-prescribed mood altering medications, illegal drugs, or alcohol during the hours of childcare operation or be under the influence of any of the listed chemicals or substances.

Smiling Faces Academy staff including the license holder, providers, helpers, substitutes, volunteers and subcontractors will:

·       Never consume alcohol while children are in care, or be under the 

        influence of alcohol

·       Never consume illegal drugs

·       Inform the license holder when taking medically prescribed drugs or 

        other substances, which may alter job performance.

·       Will ensure that any person in the facility in not under the influence of
alcohol or drugs.

Termination of Enrollment - Smiling Faces Academy, requires a two-week notice for withdrawal. In an event that a child or family may not adjust well to the facility. In these cases, we may ask the parents or guardians to withdraw their child. After that request, we will give the family at least a one-week notice to find care. Please speak to us if you have any questions.

Enrollment will be considered terminated if: Payment is delinquent beyond 5 business days; If Parents fail to comply with this Agreement, the Parent Handbook, or any other rules of the program; Our program, in its sole discretion, determines if it is unable to meet the needs of the Child, if we decide it's not in the best interest of our program or other children enrolled to have a child continue in attendance, in this event the family will be given a two-week notice. 

In an event that a child, parent or guardian jeopardize the safety of themselves, other children or Smiling Faces Academy staff, termination /Withdrawal will be immediate.   

  • In the event that our staff determines that a child Jeopardizes the programs safety they will be terminated 'at will' without a two-week notice.

Non-Discrimination-It is the policy of Smiling Faces Academy to actively promote the economic, social, and educational equity of all citizens including that of its employees and the people whom it serves. We comply with both state and local laws prohibiting discrimination on the basis of race, creed, color, religion, national origin, ancestry, sex, age, affection preference, marital status, or physical handicap.

Insurance – I do have liability insurance. A current certificate of coverage of insurance is available for inspection to all parents/guardians of children receiving services and to all parents seeking services from our Family Child Care program, the policy will expire 12/02/2016

PARENT BEHAVIOR - Smiling Faces Academy, has a Zero Tolerance for violence and disrespectful behavior. If program staff perceives your actions to be threatening to a child, or an adult, 911 may be called. We expect all adults, including parents, to behave in a manner that is respectful.

We expect parents to abide by the following:

·       No physical discipline of your child or any other children.

·       No verbal threats toward or humiliation of a child or staff member.

·       No use of inappropriate language such as swearing.

·       If you are under the influence of a substance it is strongly 

        recommended you ask an alternate acquaintance pick up your child.


PARENT OBLIGATIONS

·       To read this handbook and follow the policies and procedures.

·       To notify the us by 9:00am when my child will be late or absent.

·       To drop off child(ren) by 10:00am, each day, unless prior 

        arrangements have been made.

·       To bring your child adequately dressed and rested.

·       To make other arrangements for ill children and keep us informed if 

        your child has been exposed to any contagious disease or condition.

·       To keep us informed of experiences or changes in your child’s life that 

        may affect his/her behavior at the center.

·       To inform us of any changes of address, home or work phone 

        numbers, and emergency contact phone numbers.

**Failure to have current phone numbers where you can be reached in the event of an emergency may result in the program calling 911

The following rules are enforced for the safety and well-being of everyone in our facility.

  • Running is not permitted.
  • Hitting, pushing, biting, grabbing, kicking, spitting, pinching, hair pulling etc.
  • No standing or climbing on chairs, tables, or furniture.
  • No playing on the steps (either inside or out).
  • No disrespectful language will be used.
  • Children are permitted to eat in a designated eating area.  Children are not allowed to walk around and eat. 
  • Children are not permitted to lift and/or carry other children (even younger siblings).
  • Children should be supervised at all times.
  • Remember that children are like sponges; please be mindful of cell phone conversations and conversations with other parents and your actions.

REVISIONS TO HANDBOOK AND CONTRACT
All parents/guardians will receive a copy of these policies at time of enrollment, please sign on your Enrollment Agreement if you have received a copy of this handbook. Parents/guardian will receive notice of changes and updates in this handbook in advance UNLESS it is a new state or county regulation that we have no control over, in which case the change will take place immediately. We will notify parents/guardians in writing of any changes.

Any violation of these guidelines (Childcare Contract/Rate Agreement and/or Parent Handbook) will be cause for immediate termination of care. Smiling Faces Academy reserves the right to enforce any part of this contract, without voiding the whole contract.

Updated 8-31-2016

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