Parent Handbook

Sprouting Knowledge Policies

General Housekeeping

Everyone Requires:

  • A whistle, attached to the child’s jacket or backpack.
  • A child-sized waterproof backpack should contain:
    • Water in a spill-proof bottle. The facilitator will also carry water.
    • A healthy, high-energy snack in a reusable container.
    • Two bread bags
    • Change of clothes in a ziploc bag ( including socks and underware)
  • The child’s backpack should have the Sprouting Knowledge phone number, (250.377.3898) on a tag on the outside.

Clothing

The children must come with gear that is appropriate to the weather that day.
Children who are not adequately dressed will not be able to attend that day.

Layers: We recommend wearing layers of clothing so children can make adjustments as needed according to changes in weather/microclimate and activity levels.

Footwear: Boots or sturdy waterproof shoes with good grips on the bottom.
Even when it is not raining, the children may play in water or mud. Footwear should be closed-toed (no sandals).

When it is cool (spring/fall), we recommend:

  • Inner layer of fleece (or polypropylene) or natural fabrics such as wool or silk.
    The fabric should wick moisture away from the skin and provide a warm, breathable layer.
  • Middle layer of insulation made of wool or fleece.
  • Outer shell of waterproof, windproof clothing, including a rain jacket and rain pants.
  • For the feet, we recommend Sorrel or .
    Alternatively, your child can wear waterproof boots that are one size too large with two pairs of socks (wool is excellent for socks).
  • Warm, waterproof hat that covers the ears.
  • Please do not dress your child in cotton when it is cold. Cotton is lovely in the summer but not in cool weather.
    Why do backpackers say “cotton kills”?

When it is cold, please add:

  • Warm and waterproof gloves or mittens that slip on and off easily.
  • Long underwear.
  • An extra pair of warm gloves and warm socks in your child’s bag .

When it is warm, please wear:

  • A long-sleeved shirt (we recommend light cotton, silk or hemp).
  • Durable pants.
  • A sun hat.
  • Running or hiking shoes (note that children may still play in water and mud. Footwear should be waterproof wherever possible!)
  • Sun protection
*** Your child may not be admitted to the program if they are not adequately prepared. ***

Inclement Weather Policy

We go outside in almost all weather.
If the weather is particularly cold (under -10C) or hot (over 40C) our program will be cancelled.

Sprouting Knowledge may be closed on occasion due to severe weather, if we deem that the weather would be a hazard to families traveling to the program or children playing outdoors. Should this be the case, the instructors will call parents. Every effort will be made to post a notification of closure on the front page of the web site. If the local school district has a snow day, our programs will not operate.

Attendance

If your child is going to be absent, please call your instructor. This will allow us to begin the morning knowing how many children to expect.

Please do not email or Facebook message us. You need to call or text.

It is very important that parents are able to drop and pick up their children in a timely fashion. If you know you will be late to drop off or pick up your children please call your instructor.

Each morning, you must sign in for the morning on the sign in sheet. Please notify the instructor if a different person will be dropping off and picking up your child. If the person who is picking up your child changes, you must phone and speak directly to the facilitator. We cannot release a child to someone who is not on the sign in form.

Learning Environment

At Sprouting Knowledge, we aim to create an environment of respect. This includes respect for people of different cultures, ages, interests and abilities. This also includes respect for all living things. We strive to speak and act kindly toward one another.

Transitions and Separation

We understand that children who are new to the program need some time to transition into the program. Parents are welcome to stay with their children if required.

Bringing Siblings

Siblings are welcome before we leave the parking lot, but due to insurance limitations they may not accompany us on our other adventures. Babies in arms who can stay in a front or backpack for the duration of the program may attend with a visiting parent.

Media

Movies and television have an extremely strong influence over a young child’s psyche. The influence of television, movies, hand held devices and video games on developing minds is well documented and researched.

Please avoid sending your child in clothing that has characters on it so that the clothing does not influence the children’s play.

We want to see children’s imaginations and creativity grow and develop in the classroom. For this reason we do ask that your children not watch movies or television on nights before they come to class as it affects their play in the classroom significantly.

While it is not our place to dictate what goes on in your home we do ask that parents be mindful of the media their children consume, we strongly encourage families with young children to use guided media practices as much as possible and to limit their exposure.

For more information please read >>

Toys

Please avoid bringing toys from home to school. We want to make sure that they do not get lost. If your child wants to share a special toy or photo, please ask the teacher if you can show it off at circle time. After this, the toys can go home with parents or the teacher will place them in a backpack for safekeeping and will return them at the end of the program.

Smoking – There is no smoking in public parks.

Physical Play

Part of the joy of being outdoors is having the opportunity to engage in physical play. This may include building, sitting, and playing together in imaginary play. We encourage children to engage in pretend play in nature. Sticks can have many different uses, including as weapons. Our policy is to talk about this play with the children and discuss as a group how we can play in a way so that everyone feels comfortable. We will establish some rules around weapon, war and superhero play. Once we have discussed these rules we will communicate our discussion with the parents and caregivers so that everyone is well informed.

Bathroom

While we will sometimes be within walking distance of a toilet, we will not always be able to return to an indoor bathroom. Children must be comfortable using the bathroom outdoors.

Snack Time

Families are expected to send their child to outdoor preschool each day with a nutritious litter free snack and a water bottle or thermos.
Teachers carry extra granola bars in the event a child has not come with a snack. We also carry a medium sized thermos and three stainless steel glasses in the event a child forgets their own water bottle. Children are asked to line up before snack where one teacher dusts them off and removes any really muddy layers before the other teachers washes their hands.

We practice a Forest Schools 3 step hand washing routine*.

  1. Hands are sprayed with lots of soapy water.
    Children rub and scrub to loosen large and small particles of dirt.
  2. Hands are wiped clean with a cloth to remove dirt & soap.
  3. Hands are sprayed with an alcohol based hand sanitizer and left to air dry.

Children may then unpack their snack and get settled on the ground tarp. We provide wet wipes to any children eating finger food and don’t like the yucky taste that may be left on their fingers from the hand sanitizer.

NOTICE: Our outdoor classroom environment contains many known allergens including but not limited to pollen, spores, dust, dog dander & tree nuts.

* Without access to running water any one of the hand washing techniques described above is not adequate to safely remove bacteria and germs. This 3-step hand washing technique is recognized by Forest Schools UK as the only safe and effective way of ensuring hands are clean in the absence of running water.

 

Substitute Facilitator

We have a temporary instructor who is able to step in if the facilitator is ill for the day. However, since the parents will know the children best, we also rely on you to help the children feel more comfortable. In the case of long-term illness or absence over 3 weeks, we will look for a temporary instructor

Safety

Every child who participates at Sprouting Knowledge must be physically able to take part in program activities or have a support person who is capable of helping them participate.

All children must be able to respond to a request to stop.

This is important in the forest where we are close to bodies of water or steep cliffs. If you think that this might be a challenge for your child, please contact us to discuss your child’s needs before you register for the program.

Additional Care

If we find that an individual child’s need for support is greater than the facilitator and the volunteers can provide, we will work with you to look at additional care for your child.

Some options may include: You can hire someone who will support your child every day that he or she attends. You can attend yourself, or designate a friend or family member to attend. Anyone hired or volunteering to support a child must attend our volunteer orientation and submit a criminal record check.

Guidance Policy

At Sprouting Knowledge we emphasize the provision of well-planned programs which meet the individual needs of each child thereby decreasing opportunities for inappropriate behaviour. All interactions between children and early childhood educators at Sprouting Knowledge will promote the child’s development of a healthy and positive self. Children will learn, through interactions with their early childhood educators, other children and their environment that they are capable of success and self-control. All interactions at Sprouting Knowledge, including those that guide behaviour, will provide the children with learning experiences and opportunities to develop an understanding of moral values and a sense of security.

Appropriate and consistent limits will be established based on the children’s ages and developmental needs in order to ensure a safe and healthy environment for both the children and the early childhood educators.

Sprouting Knowledge staff will incorporate many methods of encouraging acceptable behaviour by:

  • Consistently modelling appropriate and acceptable behaviours, such as respect for others’ personal space, using manners and abiding by the same limits, as have been established for the children, thereby promoting acceptance of these values
  • Providing a sufficient number of interesting and developmentally appropriate activities
  • Gently guiding children through transition times with song and rhythm
  • Being aware of the environment and interactions occurring within the classroom and redirecting negative or inappropriate behaviours
  • Providing positive reinforcement for all positive behaviours exhibited by the children, in order to promote the children’s understanding of what behaviours are expected and encouraged
  • Allowing children to make choices as often as possible; however, teachers will make expectations clear when it is not a matter of choice
  • Using proximity and touch to remind the children that they are available to help them through a difficult situation
  • Providing clear, consistent and appropriate limits based on the children’s needs and developmental levels, thereby helping to prevent confusion as to which behaviours are expected and appropriate
  • Providing age appropriate explanations, for the limits that have been established; promoting the child’s development of independent self control
  • Providing reminders of the established limits, thereby clarifying and reinforcing those limits and preventing the need for disciplinary intervention
  • Ignoring minor incidents, as long no individual is at risk, in order to prevent negatively reinforcing an inappropriate and unacceptable behaviour
  • Focusing on the behaviour rather than the child and establishing clear limits in a positive and specific manner. This helps to acknowledge that the child is loved and accepted as he or she is and can promote a clearer understanding of what the child should be doing; preventing possible resistance or defensiveness
  • Recognizing that “time-in” is much more effective than time-out and time out should be used only when absolutely necessary to maintain safety of any one child or group of children.
  • “Time-outs” are guided by the teacher who removes the child from play in order to reconnect with the child and discover how she can help them work through their feelings in a more positive manner. Sometimes a “time-out” might consist of a child coming to sit next to the teacher while she works instead of playing with the group. There is never a limit of time set on a “time-out” but rather it is an opportunity to change the direction the child is headed.
  • Abiding by the principle that use of threats and/or any form of corporal punishment on a child, under any circumstances, is detrimental to a child’s development of trust and respect and is cause for immediate dismissal

If there has been a behavioural incident involving a child at any point in the day their parent will be notified. All information and cooperation from parents is appreciated when trying to determine the cause of a child’s misbehaviour; parents are, after all, the “experts” on their child. We see parents as team members and appreciate their support in guiding their children to develop into confident, respectful and caring human beings.

Discharge

Our staff members are trained to address a variety of behavioural issues common among young children. Occasionally, however, situations arise that are out of the ordinary or, due to a variety of reasons, become unmanageable. This can be a very unpleasant situation to deal with for both parents and staff and therefore, please understand that every effort will be made to meet every child’s varying needs and abilities. We will make every effort to provide quality interactions and behavioural interventions to prevent situations escalating to the point that discharge is necessary.

Parents will be asked to complete an exit interview and an incident report form, should their child demonstrate behaviour, or take actions, that result in another individual being harmed.

Examples may include, but are not limited to: hitting, shoving, kicking, biting, name calling.

In many cases, while unacceptable, these behavioural incidents are fairly common among young children and, to some extent, are “age appropriate”, if you will. On occasion, however, circumstances may arise, which we are either unequipped to manage or have exhausted all our resources to correct the situation. Should this occur and a child’s inappropriate actions, behaviour or consistent failure to follow center rules of expected behaviour be deemed to place any individual or group in ‘danger’ of physical or emotional harm, the following actions will be taken:

After the first incident, the parents will be contacted and the problem discussed and a course of action decided upon. The child will be spoken to by the staff of the center at the time the incident occurs and discipline administered. The parents will be asked to review the behaviour with the child at home. Documentation will be placed in the child’s file.

After the second incident, the parents will be contacted immediately by the staff to discuss the situation and the child will be redirected according to center policy. Documentation will be placed in the child’s file along with a written summary of the discussion held with the parents of the child.

If a third incident occurs, the parents will be contacted and asked to come to the center and remove the child from our care. Documentation will be placed in the child’s file and payment would be due only for services rendered to the point of discharge.

Should a mutually satisfactory resolution not be possible and, as a parent, you decide to remove your child from the centre, the two week notice of departure, or payment in lieu of, will remain in effect. Under rare circumstances, at the director’s discretion, this policy may be waived.

Health & Wellness Policy

We do not keep or record vaccination history for any of the children in our programs.

Families will be advised in writing of any outbreak of a communicable disease.

Your child will be sent home if they in our program with any of the following conditions:

    • Difficulty in breathing – wheezing or a persistent cough;
    • Fever (1OO degrees F/38.3 degrees C or more);
    • Sore throat or trouble swallowing;
    • Infected skin or eyes, or an undiagnosed rash;
    • Headache and stiff neck (should see physician);
    • Unexplained diarrhea or loose stool
      (may or may not be combined with nausea, vomiting or stomach cramps).

These symptoms may indicate a bacterial or viral gastrointestinal infection which is very easily passed from one child to another via the fecal-oral route. The child should be kept home until all symptoms have stopped;

  • Nausea and vomiting;
  • Severe itching, dry skin of either body or scalp if caused by head or body lice or scabies; or
  • Children with known or suspected communicable diseases.
    A doctor’s note may be required before the child can return.

In Summary, a child must be kept at home (or taken home) when the child:

  • Is suffering from one or more of the above symptoms; or
  • Is not well enough to take part in the regular programs of the program.
  • Ultimately, the care of a child who is ill is the parent’s responsibility.

If your child becomes ill during our program, we will call you or your alternate to come and pick up the child. We will endeavor to keep the child quiet and comfortable until you arrive. If we feel it is an emergency situation, we will call an ambulance for the child and contact you or your alternate immediately.

When your child comes to our program sick
it makes the other children and instructors vulnerable to getting sick as well.

PLEASE NOTE: If all instructors are too ill to care for the children the child care program will be closed.
We will endeavor to give you as much notice as possible and you will not be charged for days where we cannot provide programming.

Safety Handbook

The safety procedures in this handbook are designed to keep the program participants safe while allowing them the freedom to explore and interact with the environment around them.

At Sprouting Knowledge one of the key roles of the facilitator, parents, and/or community volunteers is to ensure that all safety measures are in place and are followed daily. We work to create an environment that is as safe as possible by being proactive and by using sensible, simple guidelines that the children and adults can remember.

Our safety principles include:

  • Constantly assess risk as conditions change (dynamic risk assessment).
  • Set up a safe space with boundaries and safety guidelines.
  • Observe the children’s interactions with each other and with nature.
  • Spot the children during more challenging physical activity.
  • Gently guide the children to safer activities if required.

If we feel that the children’s play is becoming dangerous, we will redirect the children and remind them that it is important to stay safe outdoors.

Site Risk Assessment

If the site as a whole is deemed too risky due to high winds or weather such as a thunderstorm, the facilitator will call all families to let them know that the program is cancelled for the day. If the program must be cancelled and families are already on their way, the facilitator will go to the location to meet families and let them know that the program is cancelled. Every effort will be made to post a notification of closure on the front page of the website.

If the Thompson Okanagan School District has a snow day, our programs will not operate. In case of early dismissal due to unsafe conditions, we will attempt to contact each child’s parent or caregiver. If we cannot contact a parent or caregiver, we will contact the next person listed on the family’s emergency contact list.

The Role of the Adult

All of the adults present each day have a role to play in ensuring the safety of the children.

Before the day’s program begins, the facilitator will talk with the all of the adults joining us to inform them about the plans for the day. At the beginning of each session, the facilitator will introduce the adults who are joining us for the day. At some points in the day, the adult’s role will be to engage with the children as they pursue a particular activity. At other points in the day, the adult’s role will be to observe the children’s play to ensure that it is safe.

Head Counting

Each adult is responsible for head counting at both the forest. Counting heads takes place every 3-5 minutes when the group is in one area. Each time the group transitions from one place to another, heads are counted ever 1-2 minutes. Part of having a small group and high adult to child ration is an ability to do very fast head counts.

Interactions Between Children

The children will participate in adult-led and child-led activities and will also have time for free play. Sometimes children will have interactions between them that are challenging for both the children involved and for the adults around them. If conflict resolution seems necessary, an adult may step in to mediate. Discipline methods used by facilitators and volunteers will focus on positive role modeling, suggestion, redirection and gentle discipline.

Adults will make every effort to do the following when challenging interactions occur:

  • Be proactive. Take note of the social interactions between the children.
  • Be physically close to a child or children if concerned about a social or safety situation.
  • Give the children suggestions and examples of gentle (kind, respectful) words to ask for what they need.
  • Remind the children that hands are for working and playing, not hitting.
  • Acknowledge children’s feelings and encourage them to express their feelings about a situation
    “I can see that you are feeling frustrated right now…”
  • Redirect the children to different activities or have them chat with an adult who will help them calm down.
  • When the children are calm, discuss the situation with the children involved.
    Encourage discussion of any differences so that the children can work on communicating their needs to each other.
  • Encourage the child(ren) to consider alternative actions that they could take in the future.

Interactions Between Children and Animals

The children will interact with animals in the forest (mostly dogs). To ensure that the environment is safe for the children and the animals, the children should:

  • Always approach an animal from the front.
  • Only feed and touch the animals when the facilitator says it is appropriate.
  • Use gentle hands to touch animals.
  • Return small animals (invertebrates) to their homes after observing them.
  • Wash their hands after touching animals or after gardening.

The Children in the Forest

A site inspection and checklist will be completed at every site, every time the children re-enter a site. Additional care will be taken to ensure none of the flowers or plants in the play area are toxic. Each site will be regularly reassessed for signs of environmental changes or damage that affect safety and well-being. Major factors include large rocks being uncovered and loosened and water levels increasing after a rain storm/shower or during run-off season.

  • Staff check & report weekly signs of wear and damage.
  • Staff will remove children from the site if it is deemed an excessive risk.
Safety Rules, Expectations and Guidelines

Children require consistent clear understandable boundaries in order to stay safe. At Sprouting Knowledge we don’t have a lot of rules but the ones we do have are constant, firm and non-negotiable.

Hiking

  1. You must walk between the teachers. “When we walk through the forest, we are in a sandwich.”
    Children must stay behind the teacher in the front and in front of the teacher in the back.
  2. There is no pushing past our friends to get ahead.
    Someone could fall off a narrow trail or be pushed into dog poop. Eww!
  3. Children may not hike with things in their hands.
    If you want to keep something a teacher will help you put it in your pack.

Boundaries
If needed, boundaries will be established. Each adult will watch to ensure that the children do not move beyond the boundaries. An adult will remain in close proximity to the children at all times. If we are working in groups in different areas, there will be one adult per group.

  1. Children must be able to see a teacher at all times. 1, 2, 3 can you see me?
  2. Children must return once they recognize that they have gone too far.
  3. Children must be capable of STOPPING immediately when asked.

Sticks

  1. Children may only play with a stick that is as tall as they are (or shorter at the facilitator’s discretion).
    Longer sticks will be broken or a teacher will help if they are to be used to build a structure.
  2. Children may not hike with sticks in their hands.
    When we walk and run, we put the sticks down. It is important to be able to use your own hands for holding and for balance.
  3. Sticks hit only sticks. Sticks are for building, digging, and imaginative play. 

Rocks
When we are near the water, we may throw rocks. When we throw rocks, we look around and check to make sure that no one is close to us, in our personal bubble (the area a few meters around our body). We may throw rocks that are as large as the palms of our hands.

Climbing
We only climb when an adult can safely spot us (watch us and keep us safe). The adult will be present to spot a child, not to assist them to get higher. If the adult cannot be present or cannot safely spot the child, the child will not be able to climb that high.

  1. Children may not climb trees in rubber boots.
  2. Only one child at a time may climb a tree.
  3. Children may climb only when they feel comfortable to get up & down on their own.
    We may climb as high as we are tall. We only climb as high as we can climb on our own.

Digging
Ask the facilitator if you would like to dig a hole that is larger than your hand. When we dig a hole, we will fill it back in when we are finished so that we disturb the forest as little as possible.

  1. We only dig where the teachers say we can dig.
    This protects the environment where we play.
  2. Mud play is for scooping and pouring.
    We do not throw the toys, dirt or mud.
  3. We do not chase anything down stream.
    If a spoon or scoop or flower falls into the creek and is taken downstream as a teacher to retrieve it.

Plants
We ask an adult before eating a plant to make sure it is the right kind. We keep green leaves on the plants so that they can help the plant grow.

Fire
In the winter months, we may have an opportunity to use the propane fire. When we are around the fire, we sit. We keep our bodies away from the fire as it is very hot. We also keep things out of the fire.

Water
We consistently have access to Peterson Creek a small, shallow, fast moving creek. Before we visit any body of water, the facilitator will give instructions to the children about the appropriate behavior around this water body. Children must be within an arm’s length of an adult and may not stand in the water without permission from the facilitator. We do not chase things down the creek. We do not dig in the creek bed.

Animal Encounters

Dogs
We will inevitably encounter dogs (leashed or unleashed) while in the park. While dogs are supposed to be “under control” even if off leash, some dogs are more excitable or aggressive than others. Games and discussions to stay safe around dogs will be practiced each month.

To help prevent children from being bitten by dogs, the following safety tips* will be reviewed regularly:

  • Do not approach an unfamiliar dog.
  • Remain motionless (e.g., “be still like a tree”) when approached by an unfamiliar dog.
  • If knocked over by a dog, roll into a ball and lie still (e.g., “be still like a log”).
  • Do not play with a dog unless supervised by an adult.
  • Immediately report stray dogs or dogs displaying unusual behavior to an adult.
  • Avoid direct eye contact with a dog.
  • Do not disturb a dog that is sleeping, eating, or caring for puppies.
  • Do not pet a dog without allowing it to see and sniff you first (and without getting permission from the dog’s owner).
  • If bitten, immediately report the bite to an adult.

*Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. 2009. Dog Bite Prevention.
http://www.cdc.gov/ homeandrecreationalsafety/dog-bites/biteprevention.html

Bears, Cougars, Wolves & Coyotes*
While we are in the forest it is very unlikely that we will encounter a bear or cougar. However, to be prepared for such an encounter we will practice the following safety protocols with the children each month.

Bear
In the event that we see a bear, here are the procedures we will follow:

If the bear has seen us, we will:

  1. STOP Make ourselves big
  2. Back away slowly
  3. Speak in low tone and normal volume and say, ““Hello bear, we won’t run away. You can stay and play; we’ll come back another day.”
  4. Let forest staff know that there is a bear in the area.

If the bear has not seen us, we will:

  1. Leave the area quietly and go to a more public place such as the picnic grounds.
  2. Let other park users know that there is a bear in the area.

Cougar
In the event that we see a cougar, here are the procedures we will follow:

  1. STOP Make ourselves big
  2. Back away
  3. If the cougar does not go away, keep eye contact with the cougar, show your teeth and make loud noises.
  4. Arm yourself with sticks and rocks.
  5. If the cougar does attack, fight back: focus on the nose and face area. Use sticks and rocks as weapons.

Wolf and Coyotes
If a wolf appears and acts unafraid or aggressive, we will take the following action as soon as we notice the animal:

  1. Do not allow the wolf to approach any closer than 100 metres.
  2. Raise your arms and wave them in the air to make yourself appear larger.
  3. When in a group, act in unison to send a clear message to the wolves they are not welcome.
  4. Back away slowly, do not turn your back on the wolf.
  5. Make noise, throw sticks, rocks and sand at the wolf.

We will also remind children of the importance of staying with the group to help avoid these encounters.

*Safety procedures based on: BC Parks. 2002. Bears and Cougars. Ministry of Water, Land and Air Protection.
Available online: http://www.env.gov.bc.ca/bcparks/conserve/bearsandcougars.pdf

Wasp
If a wasp lands on you wait for it to fly off or brush gently off with something like a mitten
(do not brush it with your hand).

If you are faced with a wasp don’t challenge it – it is far better for you to leave the area until the wasp has gone. Do not run or thrash or swat. If there is only one wasp, then keep still and, when safe, move to shade or away from what is attracting the wasp. If stinging seems inevitable, then cover your face with hands or clothing or get face-down on the ground. If there are multiple wasps then your removal to safety is urgent. If you find what appears to be an old and seemingly inactive wasp nest do not disturb it, there may still be living wasps inside.

Emergency Procedures

At least once per month, the instructor will practice with the children what to do when they are lost or separated from the group:

  • Stop. 
  • Find the closest tree out in the open.
  • Blow your whistle (or yell).
  • Respond to any noise with a noise.
  • Use your emergency blanket to cover your body and your head if you get cold.

If a child is not present when we do a head count, we will:

  • Stay on the site.
  • Ask others to do a head count.
  • Call the group together.
  • Determine who saw the child last, where and when.
  • Call for the child who is lost.
  • Have one adult search around the boundaries of the site to find the child who is lost.
  • Call the City of Kamloops to inform them that a child is lost.

Emergency Procedure Flowchart for Staff >>

Our Emergency Procedures Document for Staff >>

Medical Emergencies

Please ensure that you have signed the medical release form so that we have permission to perform the required first aid or transfer your child to a hospital if necessary.

Minor emergency
If a child falls and gets a cut, the instructor does first aid while the assistant leader observes the group. If a child gets a bump, scratch, or bruise, we will let the parent (or other pickup person) know at the end of the session.

Minor emergency requiring parents to be called
If a child is ill, the instructor does first aid as required. The assistant leader manages the group. The instructor calls the parent or other emergency contacts. The group arranges to meet the parent in the drop-off and pick-up location. After that, the group will continue with the day’s program.

Emergency requiring external medical care
In a serious emergency, the facilitator does first aid while the volunteer calls 911. The volunteer then manages the group. The facilitator and the volunteer will arrange with emergency staff what procedures work best for the transfer to medical care.

Administrative Policies

Fees

Fees are to be paid on the 1st of each month and must be paid in full. Late payments will result in your child being unable to attend the program until payment has been made in full.

We do accept cheques and there is a $50 fee for any item returned NSF.

Payment via interac money transfer to krystal86(at)gmail.com is preferred.

Program Fees are outlined below.

Oak & Acorn  –  $95/month

Sprouts  –  $95/month

Shoots –  $85/month

Saplings – $165/week

Financial Accessibility

We have a generous community who can assist with finding affordable quality gear. Hand-me-downs are great and we have LOTS to offer, just ask!

When funding permits, Sprouting Knowledge will attempt to provide partial scholarships to children who would not otherwise be able to attend the program.

If you have a need for financial assistance, please contact us.

All applications are confidential. Families can receive financial assistance for up to two years.

Late Fines

If a child is picked up after the end of their registered program a late fine of $5 for the first 15 minutes and $1/minute after that.
This fine must be paid before the child is able to return to care.

Illness & Make-Up Days

We do not offer make-up days.
If your child does not come to child care for any reason, families remain responsible for the full amount. There is no refund or reduction in fees for any days on which a child is absent from the program due to illness, vacation, snow days or statutory holidays. Children may however make up any class missed if space permits within one week of the absence.

Should Sprouting Knowledge be closed due to staff illness fees will be refunded within 2 weeks.

*Please note that we are closed for 1 week in December & March (regular fees apply)
See our school calendar >>

Withdrawal Policy

One month written notice is to be provided when a child will no longer be requiring care. Notice must be given by the last day of the month.
In lieu of notice payment is due in full even if the child will not be attending.

This notice must include an end date so our staff may modify the program to accommodate farewells. We ask that the parents alert us in writing of any particulars they wish to include in this leave-taking.

This arrangement allows Sprouting Knowledge to have ample time to notify the families on our waiting list and ensures a smooth transition as children move on from our program. If Sprouting Knowledge fails to provide notice a pro-rated refund will be offered.

Enrollment Change

One month written notice is required to request an enrollment change. All written notices must be received by Sprouting Knowledge on the last day of the month. Sprouting Knowledge will consider the request and honor the enrollment change if we have availability. Failure to provide one months notice will result in your child’s enrollment schedule and your child care fee remaining the same.

Probationary Period

The first eight sessions are a probationary period. Sprouting Knowledge reserves the right to request that the child is withdrawn from the program if they are unable to adapt to the program and the staff believe the program is unable to meet their needs. In this situation only two weeks notice will be required and half a months fee will be refunded.

Termination of Services

Sprouting Knowledge will terminate services immediately in the following situations:

  • A parent or family member behaving in an inappropriate manner
  • A parent or family member is abusive or aggressive towards a staff member or other families
  • A family has incurred 5 late fines
  • A child has behavioural issues that compromise the safety of the children and staff

Questions? Comments? Concerns?

Please contact us!
Email: krystal(at)lovinglearning.com