Parent Handbook

Welcome to Growing Tree

We are a private non-denominational preschool and do not discriminate, on any basis, when enrolling children.

Admission Procedures:

Feel free to visit us any morning during the school year to see if we would be a good fit for you and your child.  We have an open door policy so no need to make an appointment. We are always happy to show you around the school, introduce you to our teachers, and answer any questions you may have.  Open Registration for the fall takes place in March. Please see our school calendar for registration dates.   New children may be enrolled any time during the school year given their is space in the classroom and we are not at capacity school wide.  If we are at capacity in the classroom or school wide, we accept a maximum of ten applications per class to be put on a waitlist.  Enrollment applications can be downloaded from the registration tab on this website or picked up at school while visiting.

There are several State Licensing requirements to be completed by both Growing Tree and our parents:

Parent responsibility:

A set of enrollment forms must be completed prior to your child beginning school: emergency contact information, authorization for others to pick up your child, parents’ health history for your child, consent for emergency medical treatment, physician’s health report, as well as immunization records.

Please notify us immediately if your child has any serious allergies. Epi pens, inhalers, etc. are kept in the office  and are clearly labeled with your child’s name and full instructions on usage. We have a specific allergy form for children with severe allergies.

Growing Tree responsibility:

To supply all families with the following: teacher background check process, notification of parents’ rights, notification of children’s rights, location of local licensing office, and to display our State license.  Please be sure to not only sign your notifications of parents’ and children’s rights, but to read them as well and keep copies for yourself.

Growing Tree has an “open door” policy: Parents are welcome to stop by any time and spend time in their child’s classroom.

All children must be signed in and signed out each day. Rosters for this purpose are in each classroom. Please sign your full name, not initials.

General information about Growing Tree:

In case of emergency: We will call 911 and we will make an immediate effort to reach you – We ask all parents to provide us with a primary and alternate phone number.  If we are unable to reach you, we will call those authorized to pick up your child. A director or other designated staff member will remain with your child at all times. If your child must leave the premises, the director, or other designated staff member, will accompany him/her, and will take your child’s file.

Your child will not be released from school to anyone who is not authorized by you and noted in your child’s file. We must have verbal or written permission from you in order to make any changes.

The sign in sheet in each classroom can be used to reserve any drop-in hours you would like for the day and any changes in pick-up arrangements.

Medical Procedures:  Each child is greeted at arrival at which time any questions/concerns we or you have can be addressed. If your child exhibits signs of illness during the day, we will contact you, or if we cannot reach you, we will contact those authorized to pick up your child.

Any medication you give us will be dispensed if it is in the original container and parent consent forms have been completed. Please note the dosage and time to be administered.

We ask that you keep your child home if: she/he has had a fever in the past 24 hours, or  has other flu/cold symptoms: diarrhea,vomiting,  heavy nasal discharge,  a constant cough, or is simply not feeling up to participating in school activities.

Please notify us as soon as possible if your child is exposed to any communicable disease.

All immunizations need to be current. As of January 2016, immunization exemptions based on personal beliefs are no longer permitted. Permit personal belief exemptions submitted before January 1, 2016 to remain valid until a pupil reaches kindergarten or 7th grade. Go to shots4kids.org for more immunization updates.

Sick Day Policy: If your child is sick for one full week or more,
A 10% tuition discount per week (up to 20% discount) may be credited to your account. Please  let the office know the dates of your full weeks  absence so we may post the credit to the following months statement. We are licensed for a specific number of children each day and so cannot implement a make up day policy.

Vacation Policy: No discounts/credits or make up days for missed days due to vacation.

Extended Absences: Half payment may hold a space (9-12:30 time) for up to one month or more IF there is no one on waiting list to fill the opening.

Morning Program Drop In Policy: You may request to have your child drop in for the morning program on a specific day. We will try to accommodate you IF THERE IS SPACE AVAILABLE THAT DAY. These drop in days must be scheduled through the office. Parents may not “exchange” days among themselves. There is a daily AM drop in rate for any extra program mornings (9-12:30)

Extended Day Drop In Policy: Early drop in (8:00-9:00) or afternoon drop in (12:30-5:00) does not need to be scheduled through the office. Write any unscheduled extended hours or pick up arrangements in parent note area by sign in sheet in each classroom. There is an hourly and half hourly drop in rate for any drop in early morning or afternoon hours.There is a $10.00 late fee for every 15 min after our  daily closing time.

Fieldtrips:  In the event of a class fieldtrip, permission slips with destination, time and date, and acknowledgement that transportation will be by approved parent volunteer, must be signed by parent of all children attending. Parent drivers/chaperones must provide copy of proof of insurance as well as copy of driver’s license.  No other transportation from the school is ever used.

Discipline: The only acceptable methods of discipline are redirection, distraction, time with a teacher, or, for the older children, a “time out”. All employees know that corporal punishment, rude or abusive language or discrimination are grounds for immediate dismissal.

Clothing: Each teacher will let you know if they would like you to bring a change of clothes to be kept at school. Activities at school are often messy as well as fun – so send your child in clothes that can get dirty!
PLEASE LABEL ALL ITEMS BROUGHT TO SCHOOL!

Toilet training: We do not require that children be out of diapers before attending Growing Tree. However, in our oldest classes, the Cedars, Redwoods and Sequoias, there are no diaper changing facilities. As your child progresses through the process of toilet training, we will continue at school whatever you are doing at home, just let us know.

Comfort items: Whatever your child needs to help him/her feel more secure and comfortable are welcome at school.

Food Allergies:  We at Growing Tree are committed to ensuring all children’s health and safety while here at Growing Tree and have implemented the following GROWING TREE IS NUT FREE! policy.

1. Snacks/Lunches:  All of the snacks we provide are nut free.  We also ask that you pack a nut free lunch for your child.  Any foods containing nuts will go home unopened.
2.Birthday (or VIP or Superstar Day!) treats:  These treats must be nut free, prepackaged, and made in a nut free facility.  NO HOME MADE TREATS WILL BE SERVED TO YOUR CHILDREN AS WE CAN’T GUARANTEE THEY ARE FREE FROM NUT CONTAMINATION. Every family has received a packet of acceptable treats and a more extensive list is available in each classroom. Go to snacksafely.com for more safe treat ideas!
3. If your child has nut allergies, we ask that you provide a supply of “safe” treats for your child in their classroom should a treat arrive of which we are unsure.  Many of your children are seriously allergic to foods other than nuts.  In this case, we will only serve your child their supplied treats unless you have told us otherwise.
4. All allergy cases are individual and we appreciate you “educating” your child’s teachers about the specific precautions needed to be taken for your child’s safety.

Holidays: Growing Tree follows the public school vacation schedule with a few exceptions; our break schedule is posted in the office, on our website, and is noted in the monthly newsletter.

Tuition: Tuition is due on the first day of the month. Tuition and ourstanding drop in fees paid after the 10th are subject to a late fee (5% of  total outstanding balance greater than $150.00).  We set our tuition rates based on 9 1/2 school months. There is no pro-rated amount for school vacations.

Tuition fees overdue by more than 30 days are subject to additional restrictions.

All Tuition must be cleared prior to  classroom graduation dates.

Your monthly schedule may be changed  after October 1, however no billing changes may be made mid month.  Any billing/schedule changes  will go into effect on the first  day of the following billing cycle. The monthly deadline for schedule change requests is the 21st of every month.

Class Communications: You and your child are greeted each morning upon arrival. Feel free to discuss any questions or concerns with your child’s teacher at this time. Notes filling you in on fun activities your child has done during the day are sent home each month. We do a comprehensive end of year observation for each child, however your child’s teachers are available to meet with you at any time during the year!

General Communication:

A director is always available for your questions. Our office number is 925-376-8280 and our email is growingtreemoraga@gmail.com. Your child’s teacher is available to you each morning at 9:00-9:15 drop off and at 12:30-12:45 pick up.  Each class also has it’s own email address which is checked before school and in the evening.  Communication is important to us – let us know what means of communication works best for you!

Our website is www.growingtreepreschool.net. It is updated monthly with current events, director’s and class newsletters and our school year calendar.

Parent Events: We have a family friendly open house before school starts. We also have a family fun house around Halloween, a family valentine party and a family picnic at the end of the school year!

If you have any questions or concerns about our policies, we maintain an open door policy for the office as well as the classrooms Please come in and see us, we always appreciate the opportunity to spend these preschool years with you and your child.

THANK YOU from the Growing Tree Administration, Linda Richardi, Terri Giovanetti, Laureen Cuneo and Evelyn Rios