Parent Handbook

"PRE-SCHOOL IS A JOURNEY, NOT A RACE"

"A Home Away From Home


​1. Program


The guiding principal of FOOTSTEPS TO LEARNING is to present each child with a very positive learning experience in the early years so that he or she may always be able to look at learning as something enjoyable. In order to carry through this principle int he daily activities of the school, a well balanced program which nourishes the whole brain is incorporated. 


Our program is designed for your child, including:

  • ​age appropriate motor skills
  • social skills
  • math readiness
  • pre-reading
  • pre-writing skills
  • individualized academics
  • social studies and hands on science
  • diversified music
  • creative art activities
  • children's authors and artists
  • dramatic play
  • fenced outdoor play area with play/gym equiptment
  • small child to adult ratio
  • literature and art
  • Our program is developmental appropriate for each age group.


2. Standards


FOOTSTEPS TO LEARNING, established in 1990, is licensed by the NYSOCFS. Footsteps to Learning is a member of the National Association Education of Young Children (NAEYC), and complies with all standards put forth by those departments/agencies. 


3. Affirmative Action Statement


Children admitted regardless of race, creed, color, sex, national origin, or religion. 


4. Admission


Children who are two years old, up to kindegarten, are eligible to enroll in the preschool. Admission requirements and enrollment procedures are as follows: 

  1. A child must be 2 by September 1 of that year to be admitted into the 2 year old program. 
  2. A child must be 3 years old by December 1 of that year to be admitted into the 3 year old program. 
  3. Children in the 3 year old program will not be allowed to advance into the 4 year old program during the school year. 
  4. A child must be 4 years old by December 1 of that year to be admitted into the 4 year old program. 
  5. If a parent intends to enroll a child in kindegarten before the standard age of 5, and if the parent can provite written verificiation by the school system that the child will be attending Kindegarten the following school year, then the child may be enrolled in the 4 year old program. 
  6. Classes are filled on a first-come, first-serve basis, according to the date of enrollement with the director.
  7. If the classes are filled when a parent calls, the child's name will be put on a witing list to fill vacancies as they occur.
  8. As vacancies occur during the school year, they are filled from the waiting list, or from new registratoins, according to the above procedures. 


5. Confidentiality of records


We shall maintain confidentiality and shall respect the family's rights to privacy, refraining from disclosure of confidential information and intrusion into family life. However, when we are concerned about a child's welfare, it is permissible to reveal confidential information to agencies and individuals who may be able to act in the child's interest. 


6. Location


Footsteps to Learning is located at 265 Mount Sinai Coram Road, Coram, NY 11727


7. Days and Hours of Operation

 Footsteps has very flexible hours to accommodate your special needs. 

Pre-School Sessions are as follows


2 year olds

9:00-11:30

9:00-3:00


​4 year olds

9:30-3:30

9:00-3:00


3 year olds

 9:30-12:00

 1:00-3:30

9:00-3:00 and 9:30-3:30


*2,3, or 5 day programs available*

Child Care hours are from 7:00 am to 5:00pm


8. Pick Up and Delivery of Children


No child is to tbe brought to preschool more than 5 minutes before class begins, nor picked up more than 10 minutes after class is over without arrangements made with the school. If a child is left byond those limits with no arrangements made, a daycare fee will be assessed when the child is picked up.


For safety's sake, children must always be left in the care of an adult, with the children being brought directly to the classroom. Children must never be left at preschool without a teacher present. Parents are asked to return to the classroom to pick up their children after class is over. Daycare arrangments can be made.


9. Tuition


Tuition is an annual fee. It may be paid in full at registration, or in ten equal installments due on the first of each month. The first and last payments are due at registration. Because tuition is an annual fee, no refunds are given for illness, vacations, or snow days.  At registration a non-refundable fee of $80 for the first year, and $40 each additional year is due. 


10. Health Information 


No child wil be accepted into Footsteps to Learning unless the child has received a health examination and is up to date on their immunizations, (or the physician must fill out a pending physical form). A copy of the child's medical records is to be submitted to Footsteps upon entering. A written statement signed by the physician is required stating the child is free from contagious or communicable disease. A certificate prepared by the physician or other authorized person is required documenting immunization.


At the time of admission, written consent from the custodial parent or guardian is obstained which authorizes the provider to emergency health care for the child. 


​In case of medical emergency during preschool session, First Aid and CPR will be administered by the staff. The parent or authorized person will be notified as quickly as possible. If medical attention is required, the staff will call the local ambulance who will transport the child to the hospital. Every effort will be made to contact the child's physician. We are a licensed MAT preschool and are able to administer Epi-Pens, nebulizers, and medication. If your child has an allergy, forms will be given to you to be filled out by your doctor, yourself. An individual health care plan will then be written and signed by you and Miss Mella. 


In the event the child develops symptoms of illness, the child is placed to rest quietly and the custodial parent or guardian is notified. Children will not be given medication or treatment except for written order of a physician or under instructions of a parent or guardian. Footsteps to Learning is equipped with CPR Certified staff members and First Aid kits. 


In the event a child contracts a communicable disease and exposes the other children, parents will be notified of such exposure. The ill child will not be allowed to return to preschool until the period of contagion has passed. 


11. Dress


​Children are encouraged to wear play clothes and comfortable shoes. Daily activities include active and messy play, and the children should feel comfortable enough to enjoy themselves without worrying about their clothes. The child's name should be placed on all outdoor clothing and other belongings to help ensure the return of all their proper possesions and clothes. 


12. Field Trips


Footsteps to Learning does not engage in any field trips; however, many community members visit Footsteps such as the Fire Department, Police Department, Safety Programs and others. 


13. Fire Drills


Evacuation drills must be conducted at least monthly during various hours of operation of the child day care center. We also conduct shelter in place drills. 


14. Snacks

Parents are asked to provide snacks for their child for each morning and afternoon. Parents are asked to provide their children with breakfast before coming to preschool, unless they are in before care. With advance notice children may bring special treats for their birthday or any other time during the preschool year. Please see your teacher about allergies in your class. We are a NUT FREE school.


15. Discipline and Behavior Management 


Guidance and not punishment is used to discipline children at Footsteps. Acceptable behavior is encouraged by giving positive and verbal rewards. This reinforces a child's good feeling about his/her behavior and serves as an example to the other children to act in such a way as to receive this praise. Asking a child to stop and think about his/her unpleasant behavior enables that child to work at self-control.


Removal from the group for a short period of time is used for a child who continually demonstrates unacceptable behavior. This time is not a punishement but rather a time when the child may calm down and remember what behavior the teacher is asking for. He/She is seated at a table with a quiet activity.


Corporal punishment is not considered to be an accepted method of dealing with young childre's behavior under any conditions. 


If behavior problems continues, the parent is asked to a conference to discuss what may be helpful in motivating the child to behave in an acceptable way. 


16. Withdrawal


If a child needs to be withdrawn from preschool, we will need one month's notice or you will be responsible for one month's tuition. June's tuition is not refundable. Should more notice be possible, it would be appreciated. 


​17. Communication with parents 


This book has been supplied in an effort to answer many of your questions. Please contact anyone on our staff if you have more questions.

Parents are informed of the activities of the preschool through newsletters and bulletin boards.  Each teacher will have their own "Remind App" to communicate with their parents. 


Formal meetings are scheduled during the Spring. If a teacher feels that a meeting is needed sooner, she will contact the parents to schedule one. If a parent has a concern, he/she may also contact the teacher to set up an appointment. 


Parents are encourage to visit Footsteps at any time. We believe in the open door policy. However, we request that you come without friends or children. If the teachers are not free to talk to you, please understand that the children come first during class time. The teachers will be happy to talk with you after the children are dismissed and through their "Remind App"