Parent Handbook

Welcome to The O’Quinn Schools of Porter-Gaud

THE O’QUINN SCHOOLS OF PORTER-GAUD

James Island Campus
1567 Harborview Road
Charleston, South Carolina 29412843-795-6708
843-795-5239
843-762-9814 (fax)

Mt Pleasant Campus
761 South Shelmore Boulevard
Mt. Pleasant, South Carolina 29464
843-881-8506
843-881-9859
843-881-0748 (fax)

We are honored that you have chosen The O’Quinn School for your child. We look forward to getting to know you and your family. It is important for every child to feel secure and happy in their new school. We value your involvement as parents and strive to create a strong connection between home and school.

Our goal is to help each child develop individually and at their own pace. We encourage learning through play, as well as through more direct instructional means. Through carefully planned curriculum, your child will be exposed to new and varied experiences. Our programs are designed to develop creative tendencies, introduce new skills, and increase knowledge. Our teachers encourage group cooperation, listening skills, individual responsibility, and FUN!

Most importantly, we will try to teach your child to think independently and to be self-reliant. We hope to expand your child’s mind by providing opportunities to make new friends, experiment with new concepts, and express themselves. We encourage children to progress as they are ready by capitalizing on their natural curiosity. We want our students to visualize their worth and enjoy the process of realizing their potential.

The purpose of this Parent Handbook is to provide you with an outline of the school’s philosophy, curriculum, organization, procedures and standards. Throughout the school year, there are a number of opportunities for you to become more active in the O’Quinn Schools. We encourage participation in your child’s class activities, field trips, supplement observation days and holiday programs. You may also wish to become involved in the Parent Teacher Organization. Through Parent Conferences and ongoing communication, we encourage a strong connection between home and school.

Our students are in a wonderful age group, full of wonder and joy. Thank you for the opportunity to care for your child and help foster a lifetime of learning.

PHILOSOPHY

Our school’s philosophy balances innovative methodology and techniques while remaining traditional in our basic goals. Our two primary goals are to foster the growth of the total child and to enable each child to reach their highest developmental potential. We offer a developmentally appropriate, learning-centered curriculum which scaffolds the skills gained from year to year. In our Kindergarten program, we strive to make the transition to first grade as stress-free as possible. We concentrate on a strong phonetic language arts and hands-on manipulative math program. We continue to incorporate emerging and innovative early childhood education trends with the core programs begun by Linda O’Quinn, our founder.

We are interested in providing a smooth transition and strong bond between home and school. We wish to extend the child’s world by providing opportunities for solving problems, making decisions, expressing opinions, and forming conclusions. These general abilities are developed through specific skills, such as recognizing the relationship between size and shape, understanding numerical concepts, learning and writing the alphabet, grasping phonics and blending sounds to begin reading. We hope to make children feel secure within the class and to encourage the growth of good social habits such as courtesy, self-control, and consideration for others.

Linda O’Quinn’s philosophy as stated in 1971 remains valid. She stated:

We want children to discover their potential relationship to others, an awareness of the world around them, and their ability to react to it. They will learn that their life is unique. Even though they may encounter obstacles, they will realize they have within themselves the ability to cope with these problems. A sense of civic duty and responsibility will be learned through meaningful units which educate them about the world they know, and also make them aware of broader horizons. Through observation and direct experience, we are encouraging the child to learn about the natural world – plants, animals and earth itself. Readiness for any activity is letting children grow, live and perform what they are old enough and ready to do. When the teacher believes in the basic good, curiosity, and joy in each child, the child cannot help but visualize their worth and enjoy their level of readiness.

Most importantly, we will try to teach children to think for themselves by allowing them

to express themselves through various mediums of creative self expression (role-playing, art, music, creative movement, crafts, games, etc.). This will help them to find their own inner music, to learn to be an individual, to spark their curiosity, to live a richer life, and to try to succeed in any educational endeavor that they undertake. We believe that children learn best when the importance of their play as work is respected.

Children are not small grown-ups. They are little citizens of a special world – a world open to every grown-up, but visited by all too few of us. As teachers we are indeed fortunate to have the opportunity to enter and be a part of a child’s unique world!

All of our programs help foster a lifetime love of learning. We capitalize on the child’s innate curiosity to encourage their development. We balance time for self-motivated exploration and direct instruction to ensure all students are exposed to new concepts and allow their initiative to drive their development.

NON-DISCRIMINATION POLICY

O’Quinn Schools of Porter-Gaud admits students of any race, color, national, or ethnic origin to all the rights, privileges, programs, and activities generally accorded or made available to students at this school. It does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national, or ethnic origin in administration of educational policies, admissions policies, scholarship and loan programs, and athletic and other school-administered programs.

ENROLLMENT AND ADMISSIONS POLICY

Policies are written to further clarify guiding principles and projected timeline of events. The O’Quinn School of Porter Gaud adheres to certain requirements when accepting students. The O’Quinn School is open to all students on a space available basis. The O’Quinn School does not discriminate on the basis of race, gender, color, national or ethnic origin.

All prospective applicants will be placed in an application waiting pool. Beginning January 1, 2009, applications will be accepted only after the birth of a child.

Options noted on the Application for Enrollment form are morning Pre-School programs unless otherwise noted. The O’Quinn Pre-School program begins at 8:30 and ends at approximately 11:30 AM. We offer Extended Hours (“EH”) for certain options as noted on the Application for Enrollment form. For EH, the School is open from 7 AM to 6 PM. Pre-School and EH program hours are subject to change. We currently offer 3 day (MWF) and 2 day (TTh) options for two and three year olds in either the morning or EH program. We also offer a 4 day (M-Th) morning program for four year olds, as well as 5 day morning and EH options. O’Quinn Schools four year old Discovery program provides geography & science based curriculum; these children attend our four year old program in addition to the Discovery program. Our 5K (Kindergarten) program is offered for 5 days per week; it begins at 8:30 AM and ends at 2:30 PM.

The enrollment process begins with pre-registration for existing students. Once pre-registration is complete, O’Quinn School will determine the number of spaces available in each age group based on capacity in that age group and the anticipated number of returning students. Available spaces in each age group will be filled initially by the following preference order:

1. Children of staff of O’Quinn School and Porter-Gaud

2. Siblings of current students at O’Quinn School

After preferences have been filled, applications will be considered. Prospective applicants will be contacted and provided information on options available and cost of these options. Prospective applicants will continue to be contacted until all open spaces have been filled. After an age group is filled, O’Quinn School will continue to maintain an application waiting pool for each applicant.

Upon acceptance of a Pre-school admission, a non-refundable registration fee is required to secure the spot. For all Kindergarten acceptances, a non-refundable deposit of the full monthly tuition is required. Due dates for all registration fees and deposits will be published at the time of acceptance. Failure to return required registration information by the due date may result in forfeiture of the spot.

OPERATIONAL POLICIES

Arrival and Departure Procedures

Only designated persons listed in your child’s record may pick up your child. If a new designee is picking up, this person must present a picture ID to the office, where it will be verified that they are on the pick up list. Phone calls to the office designating exceptions to this procedure should be reserved only for emergency situations. Also, please note:

  • School hours and carpool times will be published annually in the information packet sent prior to the beginning of school.
  • Please remember that a child may not enter or leave the school building unless accompanied by an adult.

Driveway

The circular driveway at the school is one-way only; please, always drive slowly as children are present. The parking spaces at the front and side of the building are for pick up and drop off of children. If you are not using the carpool line, please use one of these parking spaces. No cars should be parked, unattended, in the driveway beginning 5 minutes before the start of carpools. Please remember, while dropping off or picking up your child, to:

  • Not leave your car running
  • Refrain from talking on a cell phone

Carpool

We encourage children to increase their self-reliance by using carpool. We have designated staff members who will open car doors before school begins and assist children to their classrooms. Teachers will load your child in the car at dismissal time. For the safety of all the children, please put your child’s car seat on the passenger side of the car. For you and your family’s safety, do not get out of your car in the carpool line. If you prefer to walk your child to class, please park in the parking lot.

Preschool/Kindergarten Only Programs

Children enrolled in 2’s, 3’s & 4’s Preschool morning program attend school between the hours of 8:30 and 11:30 AM . Five year old Kindergarten hours are 8:30 AM to 2:30 PM.

Please understand our ability to make exceptions from our set preschool/Kindergarten hours may be limited. In order for us to maintain appropriate staffing, arrangements to have your child stay beyond these hours must be made well in advance. In this case, a fee will be calculated and charged on your next statement.

Extended Hours Program

The school is open from 7:00 AM to 6:00 PM. Unless you are dropping your child off in carpool, please park and walk your child to the appropriate staff member. Please remember:

  • Always sign your child in and out
  • Never allow your child to enter or leave the building alone.

If an emergency arises and you anticipate a problem with picking up your child before 6 PM, you should arrange alternative transportation. Charges for late pick-up (after 6:00 PM) are $10 for each five minute period. These fees must be paid, in cash, at the time of pick up. If a child is frequently picked up after 6 PM, we may require notification of alternative transportation prior to re-admitting your child.

Tardy Arrival / Early Departure

We value our instructional time with the children, and each day is carefully planned to maximize development. Late arrivals and early departures can be disruptive to our learning atmosphere. If your child is in a Preschool class and arrives after 9 AM (or 8:30 AM for Kindergarten), you will need to escort your child to their classroom, open the door quietly and get the teacher’s attention to come and bring your child into the classroom. We ask that you not enter the classroom, when class is already in session; it is important not to disrupt the curriculum.

If early departure is necessary, especially in the Kindergarten program, we request that a written note be sent to the teacher that morning. This will allow us to have your child ready and cause as little disruption to the learning environment of the classroom.

Vacation and Holiday Policy

The school will close for certain holidays and work days during the year as noted in the annually published school calendar. Tuition is due during periods that include holidays.

Emergency Closing

In case of an emergency closing, The O’Quinn School will follow the same schedule for closing as Porter-Gaud School whenever possible. In the case of emergency situations, you will be notified by phone and email through our AlertNow system. We also encourage you to listen to announcements on the local news. For additional information on emergency communication, please see the Communications Policies of this handbook.

Field Trips

Classes may take field trips during the year to augment a curriculum subject. Field trips allow children to learn through a new environment. A field trip permission slip must be on file for all children. Field trips must be approved by the Directors and be appropriate for all children in a class or age group. The O’Quinn School reserves the right to cancel or deny any field trip.

Transportation is usually provided by volunteer parents; all transportation must comply with current laws. We generally require at least one adult for every 2 children to be present for any off-campus learning events. Specific requirements for each Field Trip will be detailed in the notification from the classroom teacher.

School Facilities

Birthdays

We are not able to host birthday parties at the school. Our teachers will put party invitations in the children’s cubbies as long as all children are invited. If you are not inviting the entire class, invitations should be mailed. Due to school policy, pool party invitations should also be mailed.

Withdrawal from School

We reserve the right to withdraw a child from our school if any of the following occur:

  • delinquent payment of tuition and fees
  • lack of current immunization records
  • the child continuously displays disruptive or destructive behavior
  • persistent illness or consistent lengthy delays in picking up ill children

HEALTH POLICIES

SC Immunization Records

Each child is required by state regulations to have a current record of immunization on file. Please ask your pediatrician to issue your child the SC DHEC immunization form (DHEC Form #2740). We cannot accept any other immunization record. If a child’s immunization record is not complete within 30 days of enrollment, the child will not be allowed to attend school.

First Aid and Emergency Care

A signed Permission for Health Care Form authorizing emergency care for your child must be on file. Emergency numbers in order to reach parents at all times, as well as two other authorized persons, must also be included in our records. Additionally,

  • In the event of a minor accident at school, basic first aid will be administered by the staff and a parent or authorized adult will be notified.
  • If immediate medical attention is required, EMS will be contacted to transport the child to the hospital. Should this happen, we will contact the parent or authorized person and/or the child’s pediatrician.

Administering Medication

Parents must complete an authorization form for any medication (prescription or over the counter) to be administered. These forms and all medications are kept in the office. Medication should be delivered to the office; no medications should be left in a child’s classroom. Our staff can administer prescription medication provided that it is in the original container stating the child’s name, physician, and prescription data (to include name and dosage). All “over the counter” medications must be in the original container. Long-term medication that is necessary for chronic illnesses should be accompanied by a physician’s statement giving name, type of drug and predicted duration of consumption.

Allergies

The School is committed to taking reasonable actions to protect and accommodate children with severe allergies, especially nut and other food allergies. Please see the Meals and Snacks section for the school’s policy on food allergies.

Any child with a severe allergy must provide written medical documentation, instructions and medications as directed by a physician. A Food Allergy Action Plan form, available in the office, must be completed by both parent and physician annually and kept in the Child’s file.

Ill Children

DSS regulations specify that our school cannot keep sick children, and it is the parent’s responsibility to make other arrangements in the event of illness. Children with an illness that prevents them from participating comfortably in the program’s activities or an illness which results in a need for greater care than our staff can provide will be excluded from the school. Children with signs of fever, illness or infection will not be admitted. Children may return to school only after they have been symptom free for 24 hours. In certain situations, a written note from your child’s physician may be required.

Common symptoms and conditions requiring exclusion from school are included, but not limited to the following:

Fever: Children with axillary temperature is 100o or greater must be sent home.

Diarrhea: Parents will be notified and the child removed from school if the child has 2 or more loose stools. For certain conditions associated with diarrhea, a note from a physician may be required for re-admission.

Vomiting: The school cannot care for children who have vomited 2 or more times in the past 24 hours, unless the condition is determined to be caused by a non-communicable condition and the child is not in danger of dehydration.

Influenza/Influenza-like Illness (ILI): Children with ILI symptoms, including but not limited to axillary temperature of 100o, cough, and/or sore throat, must be excluded from school. These children must not be re-admitted until 24 hours after the resolution (last sign) of symptoms.

Communicable Diseases: Children may not attend school if they show signs of a communicable disease, including but not limited to Conjunctivitis (pink eye), Hepatitis A, Measles, Mumps, Varicella (chicken pox), Rubella, Pertussis, Haemophilus, Influenza, and Meningitis.

Rash: A rash with fever or behavior change will be considered contagious until a physician determines the condition is non-communicable.

Skin Infections: Children with skin infections, including ringworm, pinworm, impetigo, or scabies, will not be allowed to attend school until treatment has begun and your physician recommends re-entry.

Head Lice: Children with head lice must be removed from the school and treated for lice and nits (eggs). All nits must be removed before the child returns to school.

Child Abuse/Neglect

The O’Quinn School is mandated by South Carolina State Law to report suspected child abuse and neglect to the local authorities.

Meals and Snacks

The O’Quinn School is “allergy-sensitive”. For our purposes, “allergy sensitive” means that we will take reasonable steps to accommodate children with allergies. The school does not serve foods containing peanuts or tree nuts. All snacks and treats, including for parties or other special events, must be nut-free. If your child has severe allergies, please see the Allergy section of the Health Policies.

We provide a mid-morning snack for all children enrolled at our school. Lunch and mid-afternoon snack are provided to Kindergarten and Extended Hours children. We strive to ensure all of our food offerings comply with our allergy policies as well as provide nutritious, kid-friendly foods. We do not offer any meal or snack substitutions unless a child has allergies or diet restrictions. In order to accommodate your child’s restrictions, a doctor’s note will be required to be on file stating the reason and the restriction. Special permission from the office is required in order to bring in snack or lunch substitutions.

The school does not provide breakfast. Children may bring breakfast between 7:00-7:45 AM. One of our staff will monitor the children during this time. We strongly encourage a nutritious well-balance breakfast be provided to all children, especially those who will be eating at school.

Birthdays and Celebrations

Birthday celebrations are special and important days for your children. Each child is given special recognition in the class for their birthday. Parents may send treats to share with their child’s class on birthdays; please talk to your child’s teacher prior to bringing in a special treat. We encourage nutritious treats, limiting sweets. Any snacks brought in must comply with our Meals and Snacks Policies. We ask that parents be considerate of any allergies present in their child’s classroom when planning special treats and snacks. Such consideration may include limiting any special snacks to those not processed in a facility that processes nuts. Hard candy, gum, and deflated balloons are not allowed at school.

ENROLLMENT AND ADMISSIONS POLICY

The O’Quinn School adheres to certain requirements when accepting students. The School is open to all students on a space available basis. All prospective applicants will be placed in an application waiting pool. Beginning January 1, 2009, applications will be accepted only after the birth of a child.

Available spaces in each age group, after pre-registration of existing students is complete, will be filled in the following order of preference:

1.Children of staff of The O’Quinn School and Porter-Gaud

2.Siblings of current students at The O’Quinn School

Open spaces will then be filled from our waiting pool, based on application date, tour attendance, and other considerations. After available spaces are filled, The O’Quinn School will continue to maintain an application in the waiting pool for each applicant.

Upon acceptance of admission, a non-refundable registration fee and a non-refundable tuition installment payment is required to secure the spot. Due dates for all registration fees and deposits will be published at the time of acceptance. Failure to return required registration information by the due date may result in forfeiture of the spot.

PROGRAM POLICIES

Curriculum Goals

We believe that the preschool/kindergarten years of a child’s development are crucial in education, motor skills, and brain development. Fostering learning during this time promotes healthy intellectual growth and educational curiosity. Our curriculum is designed to develop each child to his/her highest potential through age appropriate activities and pace. The goals for our program include developing objectives based on specific strategies for each age group. Our strategies include establishing a child-friendly environment, assessing the objectives for each child, encouraging parent involvement, and providing for the professional development of our teachers.

We regularly evaluate our curriculum programs to ensure the best quality within a fun and caring environment. Our objectives for each age group focus on areas of a child’s development, including emotional, social, physical, and cognitive. Our curriculum is centered around activities in language arts, math, science, physical education, music, foreign language, and art. These areas help ensure a well-rounded environment and allow each child to excel. Our 5 year old Kindergarten program provides first grade readiness in reading, math, and handwriting. We also provide science, geography, art and music appreciation as part of our full day Kindergarten program.

We assess each child multiple times throughout the year. Our teachers use formal, as well as casual, techniques to allow them to build on a child’s natural strengths while providing extra time or different means in areas which need additional attention. Parent-Teacher conferences are key elements to a strong home and school bond. Formal assessments provide a progress report and a basis for ongoing parent discussions.

Program Offerings

Our currently offered morning and Extended Hours (“EH”) programs may change based on the needs of our parents. Pre-School and EH program hours are also subject to change. For our 2 year old program, we offer a 5 day (Monday – Friday) EH program. We currently offer 3 day (Monday, Wednesday, Friday) and 2 day (Tuesday, Thursday) options for two and three year olds in either the morning or EH program. For our 3 year old program, we offer a 5 day (Monday – Friday) program for either the morning or EH. We also offer a 4 day (Monday -Thursday) morning program for four year olds, as well as 5 day (Monday – Friday) morning and EH options. The O’Quinn School offers a full day (8:30 AM – 3:15 PM) four year old Discovery program, summarized below. Our Kindergarten (5K) program is offered for 5 days per week; it begins at 8:30 AM and ends at 2:30 PM.

Four Year Old Discovery Program

This specially designed curriculum allows 4 year olds a full day (6 hours) of school/curriculum time. The day is split into 2 sections, Discovery and 4 year old kindergarten. The Discovery program is a Geography and Science based curriculum. The class “travels” around the world to learn the social studies and ecosystems of each country they visit. The curriculum is deliberately interactive to provide numerous avenues for the children to explore our world. The children gather the fundamentals for reading readiness and math awareness during the 4 year old preschool time. The Discovery program provides an alternative for older 4 year olds or those that are ready for more challenge.

Sample Daily Schedule

The children’s day begins with arrival and free play time. Once the children are settled into their classroom, each class has a morning circle time. Morning circle is essential for the teacher to discuss the curriculum topic and for the children to understand the plan for the day. Circle time is generally followed by small group/center work to reinforce the objectives with a hands-on activity. Mid-morning snack is provided and the all the children enjoy outdoor play time. The morning preschool program ends with an additional small group/center time to allow support or introduction of new concepts. The Kindergarten schedule follows a more direct instruction model and includes a morning meeting, snack, lunch and quiet time followed by afternoon science and social studies units.

Extended Hours children will have lunch after the morning program and then move to either a nap; there is a quiet/awake room option for 4 year olds. After nap/quiet time, the children will have an afternoon snack and a less formal small group, circle, or center time. This instructional time allows the EH children the opportunity to strengthen their developmental skills and understanding of concepts introduced during the morning preschool program.

Classroom Environment

We strive to provide a variety of materials in the classroom which are accessible and engaging to the children. For example manipulatives, dramatic play, books, and puzzles are used daily to provide learning opportunities. We also encourage respect for this equipment. Our classes are set up for regular small group work in order to give each child more personal attention, as well as freedom of choice. These smaller groups help ensure appropriate stimulation. Though our program is designed to challenge the children, our classroom atmosphere is relaxed and void of pressure. We adhere to vigilant supervision by staff so that a safe environment is always present both indoors and out.

Enhancements

As part of our Pre-School and Kindergarten programs, we offer three enhancements: Physical Education, Music, and French. These enhancements are highlighted in special programs throughout the year, including a Holiday, 4’s Mother’s Day, Field Day for 4’s and 5K, and 5K Graduation programs.

Physical Education classes are given to full time 2’s, 3’s, all 4’s and 5K classes to promote the appreciation of a healthy lifestyle through the development of basic physical fitness skills . A variety of activities are used to emphasize sportsmanship, skill development, team work, gross motor development and FUN.

O’Quinn School students in the full time 2’s and 3’s, as well as 4 year old and 5K programs study basic music concepts through singing, playing “instruments” and movement activities. The goal of our music classes is to foster in each child an appreciation of various types of music as well as a positive attitude toward music and the ability to perform.

French classes are provided regularly for our full time 3’s, 4’s and 5K programs. The purpose of the program is to introduce students to the spoken language as well as the country’s unique culture and customs. The students become familiar with the rhythm of the language which enables them to develop and refine the skills of listening, understanding, and reproducing the spoken language.

Outside Recess

Outside playground time is an important part of our school’s program and each child’s day. The children do go outside for recess, although abbreviated, on extremely hot and cold days. Please dress your child accordingly. In the summer, please apply sunscreen and bug spray before coming to school.

Clothing

We encourage children to wear comfortable, washable play clothes because our daily schedule includes active and messy play. Tennis shoes and socks are recommended footwear, especially for PE class days. We do not allow bare feet and certain types of sandals/shoes. Please check with the office on current policies related to appropriate footwear.

All 2, 3, and 4 year olds should have at least one full change of clothing at school. Please label all clothing, backpacks and book bags, etc.

Supplements

In order to provide the greatest opportunities for our children, each year we offer supplemental classes in various subjects as determined by demand and scheduling. These are offered on a first come first served basis, are charged separately from tuition, and scheduled after our preschool/ kindergarten programs. Details of current supplement offerings are available in the current supplement packet.

Summer Camp

We offer a relaxed, fun-filled summer designed to give your child a break from the regular school year routine. Summer Camp themes change each week and are designed to keep the children learning in a fun, activity-centered approach. We also offer week-long supplements in the summer.

Summer camp is open to all students who are enrolled for the fall plus our recent 5K graduates. We depend on the enrollment of our EH children in order to operate during the summer. Depending on demand and staffing requirements, we can often accommodate more flexible schedules in the summer. Please refer to the Summer Camp sign up form for available options. During Summer Camp, children may enroll in the morning program or Extended Hours. Unless otherwise noted, all policies remain in effect during the summer.

Discipline

Discipline in a preschool/kindergarten is a teaching opportunity with the emphasis placed upon being positive. We need the support and input of parents in order to motivate the children to behave in acceptable ways. Acceptable behavior is encouraged by giving positive verbal rewards that reinforce good behavior. We may ask children who misbehave to stop and think about their behavior, encouraging them to work on self control. Time out may be appropriate for a child who continually demonstrates unacceptable behavior. Removal from the group often gives a child an opportunity to calm down and decide when he/she is ready to rejoin the group.

We are interested in working with our parents in fostering self-discipline in our children. We want to help the child to control his/her own behavior and learn the consequences of poor choices in behavior. We will send written notification home to parents of repeated behavioral issues or those which warrant parental notification. We will work with parents on any repeated behavioral issues to ensure the child is provided consistent reinforcement at both home and school.

We will not use any form of corporal punishment. Please do not harshly reprimand your child or spank while on school grounds.

Toilet Training

Children must be toilet trained, except for children in our two year old program. Parents of two year olds should supply diapers and wipes. We assist the parents in toilet training during the 2 year old program. Three year olds must be potty trained before entering the program. Occasional accidents are understandable. Please provide a change of clothing for your child.

We are not able to provide services to children who use a bottle or pacifier.

Naptime

Our 2’s and 3’s participate in naptime. Parents of children in our 4’s program have a choice between an awake room and a nap room. Please let the office know which option you would like and inform them of any changes for the second semester.

Children enrolled in our extended hours program and nap should bring a zippered or drawstring bag containing a baby pillow, crib size sheet and a light blanket. PLEASE LABEL ALL ITEMS. Parents will take nap items home for laundering on Fridays and return them on Mondays.

Toys and Personal Items

We take great care in providing a variety of toys and learning materials in the classroom. We discourage children from bringing toys and personal belongings from home. We encourage the children to bring books or items that can be shared with the class. Please do not allow your child to bring anything that is valuable or breakable. We cannot accept responsibility for lost or damaged items that are brought from home.

Pet Policy

Unfortunately, we are not able to allow your household pets to visit the school.

COMMUNICATION POLICIES

We value keeping our lines of communication open between home and school. The school provides several forms of regular communication to keep our parents up to date. We provide newsletters from each age group, email notices, a Facebook fan page, and a PTO school-wide newsletter. We conduct periodic parent surveys on a range of topics to ensure we are reasonably meeting our parent’s needs. We encourage our parents to contact the office or their teacher with questions or comments.

Phone Calls, Emails, Other Electronic Communications

To contact a teacher during the school day, please call the office; we will deliver a message. Teachers are not available to answer direct phone calls, return emails or text messages during the school day. Unless an emergency, direct communication with a teacher is limited to their break times.

Emails will generally be used to notify parents of updates, reminders, and general information. Our AlertNow system allows for simultaneous emails and phone calls in the event of an emergency. If you have a phone number or email address change, please notify the office immediately.

Our Facebook fan page is open to the public. We encourage fans to post comments, please make sure they are appropriate for both campuses. We reserve the right to remove any fan, any comment, or photo we (in our sole discretion) determine is not appropriate. We are excited to use this new means of communication as a way to share news, upcoming events, and pictures.

Emergency Communication

In the event of an emergency, we will send notification of the type of emergency and any pertinent information through our Emergency Blackboard Connect system to all phone/cell numbers and emails on file.  Updates will be sent as appropriate.  For emergencies, broadcast simultaneously call several numbers and emails on file.

Photographs

Photographs and videos of the children may be taken on occasion for use in newsletters, publications, O’Quinn website and Facebook, or advertisements, both printed and electronic.  Your permission to use photographs that include your child without compensation is part of this agreement. If you do not want your child to be photographed for use in publications please see the office.

Confidentiality

A child’s record, emergency information, photograph and other information about the child or family and information that may identify a child by name or address is confidential and may not be copied, posted on a web site or disclosed to unauthorized persons, without written consent from the child’s parent.

Parent Involvement & Visits

It is one of our goals to build a growing relationship between the parent and the school to better meet your child’s needs. Your participation is essential to the happiness and well-being of your child, which creates a very special link between home and school.

Parent visits to the school are welcome. Please make an appointment for any in-class observations. Classroom observations can be disruptive to the learning environment and we encourage you to use the two-way window to observe. In-class observations may carry a time limit. Please call the office if you wish to check on your child.

We welcome our parents to share a special talent or a family tradition/custom with your child’s class. Please contact your child’s teacher about scheduling a convenient day and time.

FINANCIAL POLICIES

Tuition

The O’Quinn School is committed to making enrollment financially accessible. T .  Tuition is set based on an annual amount; this amount is then divided into monthly installments for your convenience. All tuition payments are due in advance of attendance. The published tuition amounts are based on the minimum required payment. Payments in amounts greater than the minimum installment are welcomed and will be credited to your account. Tax receipts will be completed upon request.

Payments & Collections

You are responsible for your payments. Statements will be sent by mid-month if tuition payment is not received in a timely manner. Monthly tuition installments are due, in advance, regardless of whether your child attends school during that period.

Preschool/Kindergarten Only

Tuition for our morning preschool or kindergarten only programs are set based on 9 monthly installments. Monthly installments are payable one month in advance and are due the first of each month. Monthly installments are considered late if not received by the 10th of the month.

Delinquent Accounts

An account is considered delinquent if tuition payments are 2 installments or 30 days (whichever is less) in arrears. Statements for delinquent accounts will be sent home and followed by a phone call. Payment plans shall be addressed on an individual basis, shall take into account any extenuating circumstances, and must be approved by the Finance Director and the Executive Director. Failure to pay or to make arrangements to pay delinquent tuition will follow approved procedure ending in the possible suspension or removal of a child from our program. The O’Quinn School reserves the right to use all means necessary to collect delinquent accounts, including but not limited to legal proceedings.

Lunch Bunch Fee

Lunch may be provided for children staying after dismissal and through their age groups scheduled lunch time, generally in order to take a supplement class. Lunch Bunch is only available based on a known, consistent weekly schedule; the per semester fee must be paid in advance. The fee for lunch and care for the extended time will be published and distributed with supplement information.

Other Fees

Other fees for registration and supplements will be charged and collected as noted in the information packet specific to that event. For registration, failure to pay the registration fee or prepaid tuition by the published due date may forfeit a child’s spot.

Late Fees and Returned Checks

A late fee may be assessed on delinquent accounts. A service charge may be charged for returned checks.