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Table of Contents
Half Pint (Half Day) Preschool Calendar.3
Registration Fee/Annual Re-Registration Fee .4
Inclement Weather and Emergency Closings . 5
Illness, Vacations, and Other Absences .5
Half-Day Programs (Half-Pint Preschool) .7
Suspected Child Abuse or Neglect Policy.11
Toilet Training Procedure…………………………………………………………………….14
Contingency Plans For Emergency Situations…………………………………………….15
Emergency Procedures-Potential Threat Identified/Confirmed………………………….16
Statement of Purpose
The goal of The Learning Center of Hopkinton is to provide a safe, happy and nurturing
environment in which children have the opportunity to grow and develop at their own pace. The
Learning Center supports the family by offering quality care to children between the ages of 3
months and 12 years old in their parent's absence.
The Learning Center of Hopkinton believes in placing equal emphasis on the developmental
needs of each child, including the physical, emotional, social, and intellectual components, which
contribute to each child's maximum growth potential. Children are encouraged to express their
ideas and thoughts through artistic representation, dramatic play, experimentation, and
investigation. Teachers design the programs to meet each child's interests and needs. Classrooms
are designed to provide a safe, happy, and stimulating environment in which each child can grow
and develop. Parent input and support are an integral part of the learning experience. Parents are
encouraged to discuss their ideas with their child’s teacher.
Statement of Non-Discrimination
The Learning Center of Hopkinton does not discriminate on the basis of race, religion, cultural
heritage, political beliefs, national origin, disability, marital status or sexual preference. Toilet
training status is not an eligibility requirement for enrollment.
Teacher: Child Ratios
Hours of Operation
The Learning Center of Hopkinton is open Monday through Friday from 7:00 a.m. to 6:30 p.m.
Half-Pint (half-day) Preschool classes are held as follows:
TLC is licensed by The Department of Early Education and Care. They can be contacted at 508-798-5180 or at www.mass.gov/eec for information regarding our center & receive the program'scompliance history.
Executive Director - Patricia Miller
Director - Jen Blodgett
Assistant Director - Melissa LaPointe
Lead Teacher Preschool - Jenna Fitzgerald
The Learning Center of Hopkinton is closed on the following holidays:
If one of the above days falls on a Saturday, the holiday will be observed on Friday. If a holidayfalls on a Sunday, the holiday will be observed on the following Monday. Substitutions inschedules cannot be made for holidays.
The center may also close for Veteran’s Day, and the day before or after New Year’s Day,Independence Day and Christmas and if less than 10 families are planning to attend.
TLC encourages parents to meet with the program administrators prior to admitting yourchild/ren to our program. Parents are provided an orientation of the program and is given theopportunity to meet our educators before your child is enrolled.
Educators will support transitions and coordinate with services offered by other providers. Werequest that parents share information about other therapeutic, educational, social, and supportservices received by the child. The child's developmental history will be shared and updatedperiodically by their parents.
Half Pint (Half Day) Preschool Calendar
The Half Pint Preschool calendar follows the public school calendar. If there is no public school,there will be no Half Pint Preschool. For a complete schedule, please refer to the public schoolcalendar provided in your Half Pint Preschool packet.
If there is no public school for any reason or if public school has a delayed opening of an hour ormore, there will be no Half Pint Preschool.
Each morning and afternoon, children are served a healthy snack such as fruit, vegetables,
crackers, 2% milk and juice. Children should bring their own nutritious lunches.
Toddler parents who prefer whole milk should provide it themselves. Parents of infants shouldprovide ready-to-use formula.
Preschool children ages 2.9 months to 5 years of age, with parents permission, brush their teethafter lunchtime. Parents provide their child a supply of toothpaste and a toothbrush. The parentsare asked to provide new toothbrushes every three months.
Special Enrichment Activities
Registration Fee/Annual Re-Registration Fee
At registration, a non-refundable fee of $100.00 for the first child is required. Each additionalchild is $50.00per child. An annual re-registration fee of $50.00 per child is due each year uponregistering for the upcoming September.
First Month Deposit
A non-refundable deposit equivalent to 1 month’s tuition (first tuition payment for Half Pints)must accompany each new registration. The deposit will be applied to your child's last month ofcare.
Families with two children enrolled five days a week receive 10% off the tuition of the oldersibling. When three children are enrolled five days a week, families receive 10% off the tuitionof the two oldest siblings.
When children are enrolled less than 5 days a week, families receive 5% off the older sibling’stuition.
The State of Massachusetts provides tuition subsidies to families that meet certain qualifications.
If you would like more information, please contact the center director.
Tuition Tax Credits
Tuition payments to TLC qualify for a federal tax credit. TLC’s director will provide you with thecenter’s Federal ID No.
Methods of Payment
Cash, checks, or money orders made payable to The Learning Center of Hopkinton are accepted.
If a check is returned for insufficient funds, you will be notified by The Learning Center andcharged a penalty of $20. You must pay the tuition plus the $20 penalty within 24 hours of thisnotification. If a second check is returned for insufficient funds, only money orders or cash willbe accepted.
Tuition is due in advance of services. If a tuition payment is not received within two days afterthe due date, a $20 late payment fee will be charged.
Weekly tuition is due the Thursday prior to the following week's care.
Monthly tuition is due by the 29th of each month for the following month’s care.
Tuition payments for Half Pint Preschool are due on the following dates:
Late Pick-Up Fee
If a child is left at TLC past our normal closing time (1:00 pm for Half Pint Preschool, 6:30 pmfor all other programs), a penalty of $15 per 15 minutes (or any part thereof) per child, will becharged.
Inclement Weather and Emergency Closings
In the event of building emergencies, heavy snowfalls, hurricanes, tornadoes, or other severeweather conditions, TLC will open or remain open for as long as safety permits. In thesesituations, parents are called and expected to arrange for child pick up by the specified time.
If weather conditions are severe in the early morning hours, please call the center after 6:00 amfor recorded information.
Full tuition is due for weeks in which emergency conditions require the center to close.
Illness, Vacations, and Other Absences
Due to staff scheduling requirements, TLC does not offer a credit or refund when a child isabsent.
Children who are enrolled at least four days a week and pay tuition weekly
for the entire
calendar year are offered one tuition-free week at the end of each calendar year provided all of
the following conditions are met:
The director has been notified in advance and has approved the requested week
Time is taken in a full week increment
The week follows 6 months of enrollment
Tuition was paid by the due date for each week of the 24 weeks prior to the vacation week
Due to staff scheduling requirements, the center does not provide drop-in child care services. Aregular schedule is established for each child upon enrollment. Different hours cannot besubstituted for those previously scheduled. However, the center tries to accommodate parentswho need an additional day of child care from time to time. In these situations, parents must makeprior arrangements with the director or assistant director. Additional hours are billed at theapplicable hourly rate.
Four weeks written notice is required for enrollment withdrawal for any reason. Your initial fourweek deposit will be applied at this time. If you are unable to provide a 4 week notice we will beunable to return the four week deposit in full.
Policies and Tuition Changes
The Learning Center reserves the right to change its policies and tuition rates with 30 days writtennotice.
Arrivals and Departures
Parents should accompany children directly to their classroom and assist in hanging of coats, etc.
Parents are responsible for informing teachers of their child's arrival as well as signing in on the
required sign-in sheet. If a child is going to be absent, parents should call the center by 9:00 a.m.
to notify the teacher.
At the end of the day, parents are responsible for notifying the teacher of their child's departure aswell as signing out on the required sign-out sheet. No child will be picked up by anyone otherthan a parent or person identified on the required authorization and consent form. Teachers mustask for identification from the authorized pick-up person not known by the childcare staff. Theseguidelines protect the children's safety.
Full Day Programs
Classroom programs begin at 9:30 a.m. Since teachers have planned schedules and activities,parents who cannot arrive by 9:30 a.m., should schedule an arrival time with the teacher.
TLC closes promptly at 6:30 p.m. Arrangements must be made for the child's departure by thistime to avoid a late pick-up fee. Parents who are delayed unexpectedly should notify the centerby 6:00 p.m. Please see fee schedule.
Half-Day Programs (Half-Pint Preschool)
The Half Pint Preschool program begins at 8:45am and ends at 1:00pm. Please have children intheir classroom no earlier than 8:45. Pickup is 1:00pm. Arrangements must be made for thechild's departure by 1:00 to avoid a late pick-up fee.
Center - Family Relations
It is our belief that parent/teacher communication is the key to a successful relationship between
TLC and its families. We realize and appreciate that parents need to know as much about what
happens here as they do when their children are at home. We record and communicate details
about daily activities, developmental progress, sleeping and eating patterns, diaper changes, and
toilet training. We plan for individual differences, special abilities, and cultural diversity. We
welcome family involvement and appreciate parental input.
TLC welcomes parents’ visits to the center and the child's classroom. Parent participation isencouraged during classroom time, field trips, and special events. TLC provides an open doorpolicy where parents are welcomed at any time.
Parents are expected to read TLC’s monthly newsletter which notifies them of ongoing events,activities, and other important information and includes each classroom’s curriculum for theupcoming month. Other pertinent information is posted on the parent bulletin board in thereception area.
Each day, teachers speak with parents to provide a brief update of the child’s behavior andprogress. In addition, written progress reports are provided to parents every six months. Teachersare also available for parent/teacher conferences at the parents’ request.
Parents are provided with a brochure on our curriculum, activity schedule, and individualclassroom schedule/routine.
Behavior management is based on an understanding of the individual needs and development of
each child. Teachers help children develop self-control through understanding by setting
reasonable expectations, offering choices, and encouraging children to verbalize their feelings.
When necessary, teachers help children assess problems and devise solutions, which may include
redirecting the children to another activity. Persistent problems are brought to the parents’
attention and a conference will be scheduled if necessary.
The following practices are strictly prohibited:
spanking or other corporal punishment of children subjecting children to cruel or severe punishment such as humiliation, verbal or physical
abuse, neglect, or abusive treatment including any type of physical hitting inflicted in anymanner upon the body, shaking, threats, or derogatory remarks
depriving children of outdoor time, meals or snacks, force feeding children or otherwise
making them eat against their will, or in any way using food as a consequence
disciplining a child for soiling, wetting, or not using the toilet, forcing a child to remain
in soiled clothing or to remain on the toilet, or using any other unusual or excessivepractices for toileting
confining a child to swing, high chair, crib, playpen or any other piece of equipment for
an extended period of time in lieu of supervision
excessive time-outs. Time-out may not exceed one minute for each year of the child's
age and must take place within an educator's view
Children must stay home if they have any of the following symptoms:
A fever over 101.0 during the previous 24-hour period
Diarrhea or vomiting during the previous 24-hour period
A bad cold with heavy nasal discharge
Possible symptoms of a communicable disease (chicken pox, lice, scabies, strep throat,
If your child will not be attending school, please telephone the center by 9:00 a.m. If your childhas a communicable disease, please notify the center as soon as possible so that others can benotified.
If the staff feels that a child is ill, or becoming ill, parents will be notified and expected to makearrangements for the child to be picked up. The ill child will be made as comfortable as possibleand taken care of on a one-to-one basis until a parent has arrived.
Administration of Medication
The Learning Center staff shall not administer prescription or non-prescription medication to a
child without written authorization from the child’s parent and physician, indicating the date,
child’s name, and dosage. (The label on prescription medication may serve as the physician’s
written authorization.) Standard authorization forms for over-the-counter medication such as
Tylenol and Motrin are available for your pediatrician to sign. Medications will be stored in a
safe manner as directed on the label.
Do not leave medication in your child's cubby, pockets, lunch box, or backpack. Please give themedication directly to your child's teacher.
All children with a chronic medical condition (example: allergies that require epi-pens, asthma inwhich inhalers/nebulizer need to be used) which has been diagnosed by a licensed health careprovider, must provide TLC with an Individualized Health Care Plan. Forms can be obtained byoffice administrators or your child's educator.
Parents are asked to please provide all medications prescribed by your child's physician. ( Epi-pens, inhalers, nebulizers, etc. that are prescribed daily)
TLC's Health Care Policy is posted in every classroom for the parents review. You can alsoobtain a copy from your child's educator or from administration.
Children who are chronologically ready to transition into the next specified age group are given
the opportunity to spend short periods of time in their new classroom on a frequent basis. When
the child becomes familiar with and confident in his/her new classroom environment, the
educator's assessment and parental input will aid in the permanent transition.
A written report will be provided every six months on the progress of each child in the program.
Parents will be offered a teacher/parent conference to discuss the content of the report. A copy
will be provided to the parent and a signed copy will be kept in the child's record.
Infants and Children with Special Needs - Every 3 monthsToddlers and Preschoolers - Every 6 monthsSchool Age - Annually at the midpoint of the program's year
The TLC staff is trained in first aid and CPR. In case of accidental injury where medicalassistance is immediately required, the following procedures are followed:
1) Rescue/paramedics will be called if the child needs to be transported to the hospital. The
director will accompany the child and bring the child's medical information.
2) Parents will be notified immediately of the child's injury and of the emergency procedures
3) If the parents cannot be reached, the emergency contact person assigned by the parents will
The center will maintain a parental consent form agreeing to this policy.
Parents will be provided an opportunity to meet with the child's educators to discuss options other
than suspension. They will be provided with referrals for services and will help develop a plan
for behavioral intervention at home and in the program.
If the first measure is not met by the parent and the child, our protocol is as follows:
Repeated non-compliance with program rules as evidenced by incident reports or other
Chronic, disruptive behavior as evidenced by incident reports or other documentation
Seriously jeopardizing the safety of themselves or another child as determined by the
Children in infant, toddler, and preschool programs are generally ineligible for suspension;however, exceptions may be made under extreme circumstances.
A family may be terminated from TLC for violation of center policies outlined in this handbook.
It is TLC's policy to give families at least 2 weeks notice of termination and to support families in
finding alternative childcare.
If a family is at risk for termination, the director shall issue a written notice to the family. Thenotice shall review the reasons for termination, referrals for alternate childcare, and other referralsdeemed appropriate by the director.
Where appropriate, the director shall inform the family what action, if any, may precludetermination from TLC. The director has final authority to terminate a family for violation of thecenter’s policies. Children will be prepared for termination consistent with their ability tounderstand. In extreme or extenuating circumstances, TLC reserves the right to cancel a child’senrollment immediately and without notice.
Infants will be placed on their backs for sleeping unless the child's health care professional orders
otherwise in writing. Infants will nap in their individual safety approved crib. Slats will be no
wider than 2-3/8 inches apart. Cribs will not contain pillows, comforters, stuffed animals or other
Suspected Child Abuse or Neglect Policy
Staff and volunteers at TLC are mandated to report suspected child abuse or neglect. Anyone
who suspects child abuse or neglect will report their suspicions to the director/administrator, who
will notify the department of social services on behalf of the center. In the event a parent makes
claims of child abuse or neglect against a staff person or volunteer, that person shall be removed
from the classroom and an immediate investigation shall be made. A decision as to whether the
staff person shall remain or be terminated will be determined from the results of the investigation.
All staff are mandated reporters and must report suspected child abuse or neglect. The
report shall be made by the Director/Asst. Director. The Director will then make thereport to the Department of Children and Families (DCF) pursuant to M.G.L.c. 199, s.
The Director will then notify EEC immediately after filing the 51A, or after learning that
a 51A has been filed, alleging abuse or neglect of a child while in the care of the programor during a program related activity.
The Learning Center shall cooperate in all investigations of abuse or neglect.
EEC regulations prohibits staff accused of child abuse/neglect from working directly with
children until after DCF investigation is completed and for such further time as EECrequires.
Staff will not discuss suspicions with parents. All allegations will be kept strictly
confidential for the Director to handle.
Documentation will be kept of all suspicions including child name, date, time, suspicions
of staff, comments from child, bruises, etc.
Staff can report any suspicions on their own even if the director does not think the
Staff will cooperate in all investigators.
If DCF supports on any allegations TLC will work with and provide any information to
If DCF supports the allegations the employee will be terminated immediately. No
Referral Services Plan
The Learning Center staff will refer parents to appropriate social, mental health, educational, and
medical services when they feel these services will benefit a child. When concern about a child’s
behavior arises, the following procedures are followed:
The child’s teacher discusses the behavior with the director/licensee and records the
The director is involved in further observations and reviewing of the child’s record
The child’s parents are informed of the concern and directed to their pediatrician or other
service provider, as deemed appropriate by the director
A list of referrals will be provided to the parents as well as early intervention and public
Transfer of Records
Upon written request of the child’s parent, the center shall transfer the child's record to the parent
or any other person the parent identifies, when the child is no longer enrolled at The Learning
Each day, children participate in several indoor or outdoor activities. For your child’s comfort and
safety, we request that you adhere to the following clothing guidelines:
Please label all of your child’s clothing and belongings.
Be sure your child has an extra set of clean clothes (underwear, socks, shirt, pants, and
sweater) at the center at all times. Clothes can be stored in a bag in your child's cubby or ontheir hook. When the extra clothes are soiled please replace them with a clean set.
Indoor wear - Children should be dressed in clothing that is comfortable and washable so
that spills and soils do not matter. Families should dress children in shoes or sneakers thathave some traction. The baby room has a "no shoes" policy.
Outdoor wear – All classes plan to go outside daily (weather permitting). Please dress your
child for outdoor play. Jacket, boots, hat, mittens, and snow pants should be provided dailyin the winter, while heavy sweaters, hat, and jacket should be provided in autumn and spring.
Summer wear includes a bathing suit, towel, sunscreen, hat, and water shoes.
Diapering and Toileting
Infant and toddler teachers record all diapering times in the Infant’s Daily Routine Chart
and allbowel movements in the Toddler’s Daily Report
The following procedure is followed when changing diapers:
1) Wash hands thoroughly using liquid soap and warm water.
3) Make sure changing area is clean and paper liner has been changed.
4) Place child on changing pad and paper liner.
5) Educators keep at least one hand on the child at all times when the child is being changed
6) Remove diaper and place in diaper pail.
7) Wash the child, using disposable wipes or other disposable product at the changing area.
Dispose of used wipes in diaper pail.
8) Place fresh diaper underneath child.
9) Apply powder or cream as directed by the parent.
12) Remove the child from the changing pad.
13) Wash your hands and the child’s hands.
14) Return the child to the play area.
15) Place soiled or wet clothing in a closed plastic bag to be taken home.
16) Dispose of used paper liner in diaper pail.
17) Clean changing area with bleach solution.
18) Replace paper liner on the changing pad.
19) If diaper pail is full, empty it in dumpster.
20) Wash hands with liquid soap and warm water.
Staff members train children in accordance with the requests of their parents and in a manner that
is consistent with the child’s physical and emotional abilities. The following guidelines are also
There is no verbal reprimand for soiling or wetting clothes. School age children change
independently and privately in the bathroom. Preschool children are encouraged andsupported with verbal assistance at the door as they change themselves in the bathroom.
Children go the bathroom whenever they need to and are not rushed or disallowed.
School age children toilet independently. Preschool children are encouraged to wipe
themselves, but will be assisted as necessary. Toddlers who are training will be assisted asnecessary.
After toileting, all children must wash their hands with liquid soap and warm water.
Soiled or wet clothing must be placed in a closed plastic bag for parents to take home.
All staff must wash their hands with liquid soap and warm water after handling wet or soiled
clothes or assisting a child in the bathroom.
TOILET TRAINING PROCEDURE
Once a child is developmentally ready and parents provide interest in toilet training, the
parent provides extra clothes, pull-ups, etc. and provides educator of a plan they use at home
The child is then asked throughout the day if he/she needs to use the bathroom
If the child has an accident and is using a pull-up, the pull-up is changed at that time. If thepull-up is dry the pull-up can be left on however it will be changed every 3 hours. If thechild is in underpants and they are soiled, the child will be assisted with changing theirunderpants and the soiled clothing or underpants will be placed in a sealed plastic bag for theparents to bring home.
Educators will provide positive and consistent guidance in a manner based on the understanding
of the individual's needs and development of the child. It will include:
Encouraging self-control, recognizing and reinforcing children's appropriate behaviors,
having reasonable and positive expectations, setting clear and consistent limits andredirecting
Helping children learn social, communication, and emotional regulation skills they can
Using environmental modifications, activity modifications, adult or peer support, and
other teaching strategies to encourage appropriate behavior and prevent challengingbehaviors
Intervening quickly when children are physically aggressive with one another and
helping them develop more positive strategies for resolving conflict
Explaining rules and procedures and the reasons for them to children, and where
appropriate and feasible, allowing children to participate in the establishment of programrules, policies, and procedures
Discussing behavior management techniques among staff to promote consistency
Contingency Plans For Emergency Situations
In case of a Fire, Natural Disaster, Or Situation Necessitating Evacuation of the
(bomb threats, chemical spills, fire, etc) All children will be walked to Saint Paul’s
Episcopal Church, 61 Wood Street, Hopkinton, MA. All parents will be called by cell phone or
phone at St. Paul’s. Elmwood School has been designated as the shelter for extreme emergencies.
All children would be transported by staff via staff private vehicles or the center would walk to
the shelter. St. Paul’s phone number: 508-435-4536
In the case of Power Outage:
TLC will stay open for one hour. If power is not restored, then
parents would be called to pick up their children at the center. (NSTAR): 800-592-2000
In the case of loss of Heat:
TLC will stay open for one hour. All parents would be called to
pick up their children at the center if heat could not be restored. Terry Oil: 508-435-6224
In the event of loss of Water:
We are to call the Hopkinton Water Department at 508-497-9765
Alert them that TLC has no water and that we are a child care center. If water is not restored
within one hour, all parents would be called to pick up their children at the center.
In the event of a Missing Child:
We are to call the Parents of the missing child and the
Hopkinton Police Department. They are to be notified immediately. Child is searched for in all
After the Police and Parents of the missing child are called, the Director/Assistant
The Director and Assistant Director will immediately conduct the search until the Police
department arrive. All available staff shall help with search.
Emergency Procedures-Potential Threat
Local reverse 911 calls are provided by the Town of Hopkinton Call 911 Maintain Safety Listen to radio for instructions from authorities on whether to evacuate or "stay put." In the event that TLC needs to "stay put", the entire center would meet in the lower level
of the building, until we were alerted that we could leave safely. All outside doors andwindows would be kept closed and sealed
Follow emergency instructions from emergency response personnel
The Learning Center maintains first aid kits and flashlights in each class room. Non-perishable food items and a supply of water is on hand and would be used during anemergency situation. Radios have been supplied with batteries and staff have beeninstructed with the above emergency procedures.
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