"Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world". Nelson Mandela
Welcome to the International Day Care Center!
We are very pleased that you have entrusted us with the care of your child. We are looking forward to partnering with you to maximize your child’s early learning!
Our mission at International Day Care Center is to provide exemplary child care by offering a program tailored to ensure high-quality daily experiences for each child.
We treat the children in our care with respect and strive to instill within each of them a love for themselves and others, as well as a love for learning. We provide each child with an environment that is safe, healthy and promotes learning.
We believe that children learn by doing. We operate a developmentally appropriate program that provides each child with many large group, small group and individual experiences to aid in their cognitive, physical, social, emotional and spiritual development.
We believe that the dedication of our teachers and their desire to provide a healthy environment allows our program to be successful. They are vital to our program and we provide them with all of the support they need to accomplish their mission.
We believe that parents are the primary teachers and role models for their children. We strive to partner with them and to offer them guidance, encouragement, and support in nurturing their children to become responsible adults.
We believe that we must all work together to teach our children how to behave appropriately. We guide the behavior of the children entrusted to us through positive methods such as modeling and helping them to learn the language necessary to express their feelings.
Our greatest hope for ourselves and the children in our care is that we will set the example for them to follow to allow them to reach their highest potential.
The International Day Care Center accepts children regardless of religion, color, race, national/ethnic origin, or disability.
When a child with special needs applies for enrollment in the program or a child in the program is identified with special needs, a professional assessment of the child’s needs may be necessary to determine the scope of services necessary. There will be a consultation between the center director, classroom teachers, the child’s parents and any other appropriate individuals to determine how the program can best meet those needs.
The International Day Care center will carry public liability insurance in the amount of $300,000 per occurrence.
The International Day Care Center will not offer any other types of insurance for the children.
At time of registration, please bring an up-to-date immunization record for each child and phone numbers and addresses of 4 people to contact in case of an emergency when you cannot be reached. Emergency contacts should be people who live in this area and people your child is familiar with.
All International Day Care Center required forms must be completely filled out prior to your child attending school.
Adjusting To Group Care
To help your child adjust to group care, we suggest you:
Visit the Center with your child before his/her first day of care.
Speak of the Center in positive ways, as a place your child will enjoy, have children to play with and adults to help him/her.
Tell your child you will come back to pick him/her up (give specific time) and hear about his/her day.
Do not “sneak out” when the child is not looking. This fosters mistrust in the child’s mind.
We find that following these recommended procedures usually alleviates a child’s fears and impacts positively on his/her experience.
Some children have difficulty making the adjustment. Our staff will work with you and keep you informed of your child’s progress.
Local Child Care Licensing Agency
The International Day Care Center is licensed and regulated by the Illinois Department of Child and Family Services, Illinois Department of Public Health, and several other agencies to ensure the best care of your child.
Full Day Programs are available for children between 15 months and 12 years of age. Half Day and Part Week programs are also available.
The International Day Care Center is open for care from 7:00 a.m. to 6:25 p.m, 52 weeks a year.
Children must be picked up by 6:25 p.m. By policy, if a child is left in the center after 6:25 p.m, a late fee of $3.00 per 5 minutes will be applied.
The International Day Care Center observes the following major Holidays and will be closed during these Holidays: New Year’s Day, Martin Luther King Jr.’s Birthday, Presidents’ Day, Memorial Day, Independence Day, Labor Day, Columbus Day, Veterans’ Day, Thanksgiving Day, the day following Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Eve Day (we will close at 1:00), and Christmas Day.
During some Holiday periods the International Day Care Center may selectively close for maintenance and staffing purposes. Parents will be notified in advance of any additional closures.
Staff / Child Ratios
The ratio in The International Day Care Center is 5:1 (5 children to one adult) in the toddlers (15 through 23 month) program, 8:1 (8 children to one adult) in two years program, 10:1 (10 children to one adult) in three and four years programs, and 20:1 (20 children to one adult) in the preschool program.
Teachers who are competent, trained, caring and appropriately screened will be available to maintain adult/child ratios required by the local child care licensing agency regulations and provide direct developmental care service to children. Responsibilities include:
1 Implementing indoor and outdoor program activities that support a child’s physical, social, emotional and intellectual development.
2 Encouraging a child’s curiosity, problem-solving, and task attainment.
3 Role modeling communication and interaction skills for children.
4 Extending a child’s knowledge of concepts appropriate to individual developmental levels.
5 Recognizing individual differences in children and responding to individual needs.
6 Providing for a child’s daily routines such as meals, snacks, toileting and rest periods.
7 Providing for physical safety and well‑being of children.
8 Administering minor first aid and carrying out emergency measures in case of illness, accidents or fire.
9 Communicating with parents regarding the child’s daily experience within the program.
The staff of The International Day Care Center is dedicated to providing a safe, happy, and healthy environment for all children.
Daily Admission and Release Procedures (Check‑ ln / Out)
State law requires that all children be signed in and out daily. The sign-in/out sheet must be filled in clearly and in complete detail (signature, not initials). When checking your child in to the program, please be sure that your child’s teacher sees you and greets your child before you leave the classroom. When picking up your child, again please make sure that your child’s teacher sees that you have signed your child out and are leaving with him or her. Remember, prior to sign-in and after the child is signed out, the parent/guardian assumes full responsibility for their child.
No child will be released to anyone other than the parent without written notification from the parent. Children may not be released to siblings or other children less than 13 years of age. In the case of pick-up by an individual not known to staff members, photo identification will be required. This identification will be checked against the emergency information card. If proper identification is not presented, we reserve the right to retain any child at school.
No parent may be denied access to his/her child, unless a current copy of the custody order that relinquishes and/or limits such parental rights is on file at the Center.
Child Health Screening
Center staff will observe each child for apparent signs of illness upon arrival and before the parent leaves. Children may be denied service according to the Daily Health Screening section of this handbook.
Lesson planning for each classroom is based upon developmentally appropriate practices and enhances all areas of children’s development; cognitive, physical, social and emotional.
Lesson planning is primarily focused on arranging the classroom environment with materials and activities that allow the child to explore and interact with the materials, other children and teachers. The curriculum is focused upon concrete experiences that are relevant to the lives of the children in care. Scheduled daily indoor and outdoor activity periods will be planned for all children. The daily plan is balanced between periods of active and quiet play; child-initiated and adult-initiated experiences; and individual, small group and large group activities.
Children should always come to the Center dressed in clothing suitable for playing. All children need an extra complete set of clothing, including shoes if possible, for messy experiences and accidents. The center is not responsible for lost or misplaced items. However, if the items are labeled, it does make it easier for parents and staff to recognize ownership.
Children need fresh air and sunshine every day (even on overcast or cold days). Outdoor experiences provide children with the opportunity for being noisy, exploring, exercising large muscles, and experiencing science, nature, and weather. This means our children go out every day unless there is extreme inclement weather. Please provide the appropriate clothing, hat, boots, and protective play clothing, as well as a change of clothes.
Well-balanced, nutritious meals are served twice daily, along with two snacks. Children will be monitored to assure that they are not exposed to foods that are known to cause individuals to have allergic reactions. If your child requires a special diet, you must provide the food and your child’s file must include a signed statement that you, and not the International Day Care Center, are responsible for the nutritional value of the food brought from home and for meeting your child’s daily food needs.
We encourage good nutritional habits in children. We request that you not send candy, gum, or sodas, or have them for your child within the building when you pick your children up. In addition, adults or older siblings should not be eating or drinking these things when picking up children. Children will be encouraged to participate in the setting of tables and clean‑up activities.
Nap and Rest Periods
A nap/rest period of 2 hours, from 1:00 p.m. to 3:00p.m, is scheduled for all children.
Please be sure that your child has the following items at the Center at all times in a bag labeled with your child’s name:
1 Change of Clothing- Pants, Shirt, Socks, Underwear, Shoes
1 Coat or Sweater
House/ Indoor Shoes
Please remember to replace clothing in your child’s cubby when used or soiled.
Children often want to bring items from home to play with or to show to their friends. If the item supports the current classroom theme, this is appropriate, if approved by the teacher beforehand. Otherwise, personal items should remain at home. Your child’s teacher will rotate sending home a “share” bag between all of the children in the classroom. When it’s your child’s turn for the share bag, he/she will have the opportunity to share an item with his/her classmates. Violent toys like guns, swords, etc. are never allowed at the Center.
A special comfort item, such as a pillow or stuffed animal, can be brought to school to be with the child at nap time only.
Diapering and Toileting
Only disposable diapers are permitted in the International Day Care Center. Exceptions to this policy are allowed only upon receipt of a physician’s statement. Please provide baby wipes and at least one diaper for every 2 hours your child will be in the Center.
All children in diapers will be cleansed at each diaper change with a disposable wipe that is used only once (routine use of powders or lotions are not permitted). If a child soils his/her diaper on the way to the Center, you are welcome to use our diaper changing table as long as the table is properly sanitized upon completion of the diaper change.
Toilet training will be cooperatively planned by the teacher and the parents so that there is a consistent toilet routine available. Young children are usually ready to begin toilet training when they demonstrate the following signs:
1. The child is able to walk by himself.
2. There is regularity in bowel movements.
3. The child is able to verbalize the need for bowel movement.
4. The child expresses a desire to control their toileting needs.
The Center has more information on toilet training when you feel your child is ready to begin. We want this to be a happy, successful step in your child’s development.
Special Experiences & Field Trips
Preschool children at the Center may participate in a variety of field trips. At times, it may be necessary to charge parents a fee to absorb extra costs of a special field trip in order to benefit the children. Trips are scheduled throughout the year and we also invite community members to come share experiences and information with us. If you have a special talent to share with us, we encourage you to do so. All parents are welcome! Appropriate Staff / Child ratios are implemented for all trips. Parents are notified prior to any trip away from the facility. Written permission slips will be obtained for all children going on field trips. Parents who do not want their children to attend the field trip will have to make alternative child care arrangements for that day.
Holiday celebrations will be a part of our planned program and will include children in the planning and preparation. In our curriculum, we respect the fact that not all families celebrate the same holidays, nor do they celebrate holidays the same way. Holidays are not over-emphasized, nor are they used to teach religion, stereotype a culture, or present a particular teacher’s perspective. Holidays and celebrations will be planned when developmentally appropriate for the age and particular group of children, drawing on family traditions and shared values. Children’s creative artwork will be the decorations for the season. Our goal is to help children learn about holidays as a part of a more inclusive curriculum about cultural diversity. If there is a particular celebration that is important to your family, please let your child’s teacher know so that it can be included in the classroom planning.
Likewise, children’s birthdays are celebrated in age-appropriate ways in the classroom. A birthday celebration is the responsibility of the parents and will be kept simple and child-centered. Parents may bring a special snack that is store-bought and labeled with the ingredients. These will be served in addition to the regular afternoon snack and the parents of the birthday child are welcome to join the celebration.
The child guidance policy at the International Day Care Center is intended to help each child develop self-control and assume responsibility for his/her actions. In order to attain these goals, parents and staff must have open and frequent communication regarding all aspects of the child’s development and behavior. Teachers will positively guide children in a consistent manner based on an understanding of individual needs and behaviors of children at varying developmental levels. Simple, understandable rules will be established so that expectations are clearly defined.
Guidance will be constructive in nature and will include such methods as redirection, separation of child from situations, praise of appropriate behavior, or, if necessary, gentle physical restraint, such as holding.
Consequences for inappropriate behaviors are as follows:
1. Redefine the rules to the child, and redirect the behavior. (suggesting alternate activities, asking the child to be a helper).
2. Issue a verbal warning to the child. The teacher will discuss the appropriate behavior desired, and will inform the child of consequences that will follow if the behavior does not improve.
3. Time‑out (the number of minutes equals the child’s age).
4. In the event that the behavior does not improve, the Director is notified as a support system. The Director will observe the child to determine any possible underlying problems that exist. For example: conflicts between two children that need to be rectified, or a child that has difficulty with transition times, etc.
5. For children with continuing behavior problems, the parent(s) will be contacted and asked to cooperate with the International Day Care Center guidance procedures at home to create consistency for the child. Parent(s) may be required to pick child up early from the Center in cases of extreme, dangerous behavior.
A child may not be disciplined for lapses in toilet training or refusing food.
The International Day Care Center employees understand and acknowledge that any inappropriate guidance technique directed toward a child will result in immediate adverse action, up to and including, termination.
Biting policies will focus on modifying child behavior within the existing environment rather than “suspending” the child from the center. When this is not possible, the parents will have to find other care for the child.
The Center Director may decide a child must be removed from the program if a repeated destructive behavior is causing a safety/health hazard to other children, adults, or to the environment.
Transitioning Children between Classrooms
A conference will be scheduled prior to the transition to familiarize the parents with day-to-day routines in the child’s new group. The child will be provided sufficient time to visit in the new classroom before permanent transition in order to make the transition as easy as possible.
We make every effort to prevent the spread of germs in the Center. In order to maintain a high standard of cleanliness at the Center, we ask you to ensure that children wash their hands with soap and water upon arriving at the Center.
For the health and safety of children at the center, all children enrolled must have current immunization records. Immunization records will be reviewed by Center personnel. Children’s records found to be incomplete will be flagged and parents notified. Parents must ensure that their children receive the required immunizations in a timely manner or services may be suspended or terminated.
Daily Health Screening
Preventing illness is one of the most difficult challenges in a child care program. While we understand that our guidelines may be inconvenient for you at times, we hope that you realize that the guidelines exist to protect the health and well-being of all the children in the program, including yours.
Children who appear to be ill or show visible signs of fever will be closely screened and may be denied admission, based upon our Illness Exclusion Policy.
If during the hours your child is under our care he or she develops symptoms of illness that require exclusion, we will notify you of your child’s condition. You will need to make arrangements to pick up your child within thirty (30) minutes of notification.
The local Health Department requires that we notify them and those in our care of exposure to any communicable diseases or infections, or parasites contracted. We also need to notify other parents immediately if there is a chance that their child was exposed to a communicable disease. If your child contracts any communicable disease or infection, please notify us immediately.
Readmission Following Illness
In order to help prevent the spread of illness in our Center, we follow a 24-Hour Symptom Free Rule. This means that your child must be free of all symptoms of illness for at least 24 hours before he/she can be readmitted. Additionally, your child may only return to the program when he or she feels well enough to participate in usual daily activities.
The 24-Hour Rule means that, if we send your child home with an illness, he/she will not be able to return on the following day because he/she would not be symptom free for 24 hours by that time. If there is reason to question a child’s readmittance, the Center reserves the right to require a report from a physician stating that the child may return to care before the child will be readmitted. Please help us to protect the health of all of the children in the Center by following these guidelines.
1. Only prescription medications will be administered.
2. All medications must be in the original container labeled with the medication name, child’s name, physician’s name, start and stop date, dosage, and time or frequency of dosage.
3. Only oral or topical medications will be administered.
4. No oral PRN (as needed) medication will be administered.
5. All medications will be recorded on a “Medication Release and Chart”.
a. Written permission from a parent or guardian must be obtained before administering any medication.
b. Each medication requires a separate form that may be used for ten days. The form will be maintained and filed into each child’s folder upon completion of the medication period.
c. The parent will note the times for administration on the “Medication Release and Chart”. If there is any doubt, contact the parent prior to giving the medication.
d. Neither the parent nor a staff member can alter the dosage from the prescription label.
6. All medications will be stored in a locked box out of the reach of children. No medication may be stored at the center unless there is a current “Medication Release and Chart” on file.
7. The following procedure will be used any time medications are administered:
a. Administer the medications to children in a separate area away from other children to avoid the likelihood of confusion and problems in administering medication.
b. Carefully read the label on the medication before administering it to the child.
c. Sign the “Medication Release and Chart” after each dosage is given.
d. If a child spits up a medication, do not re-administer it. Call the parent to inform him/her. Make a note on the “Medication Release and Chart” when this occurs.
8. Any medications left at the Center more than 14 days after authorization expires will be discarded.
Accidents / Emergencies
Although we have policies and procedures in place to keep our Center as safe as possible, bumps and bruises are a part of everyday life. Our Center is equipped with simple first aid supplies and if a child has a minor accident, the staff will administer appropriate first aid. If your child is injured at the Center, we will complete an Accident Report to provide you with information about what happened and what our staff did to help your child.
Parents will provide written consent for Center personnel to admit their child for care (medical or dental) in a situation where the child’s condition represents a serious or imminent threat to life, health, or well-being. If you do not want us to provide such care, you must submit a written plan of action in lieu of the consent.
If a serious injury does occur, we will provide immediate first aid and attempt to contact a parent or emergency designee, either to pick the child up for immediate medical care or to notify them that we have activated the 911 system, depending upon the situation. If a child needs to be transported by ambulance and the parent or emergency designee is not available, a staff member will accompany your child in the ambulance. You will be expected to assume responsibility for any expense resulting from the transport and medical care of your child. It is to your child’s benefit that you keep the Center up-to-date on your phone numbers, emergency contacts, and other pertinent information.
Parents are an integral part of the Center and will be encouraged to participate in all aspects.
1. Observe your children within the program setting.
2. Have daily contacts with Center personnel.
3. Read the information on the classroom parent information boards.
4. Attend open houses, luncheons, etc., offered at the Center throughout the year.
5. Attend annual parent/teacher conferences.
6. Help the classrooms by collecting items requested by teachers, helping to prepare materials for the classroom, making or repairing equipment and materials, etc
Payment of Fees
All fees will be paid on Fridays or the last attended day of the week. Fees are paid in the form of a check, payable to the International Day Care Center. A late fee of $25 will be applied if payment is not received on time. Upon three incidents of late tuition payment, termination of services may result.
Departures, Vacations, and Absences
A minimum two (2) week notice is required for any child discontinuing the program for any amount of time.
Termination of Services - Reasons and Procedures
Services may be terminated or refused by the International Day Care Center for reasons that include but shall not be limited to the following:
1. Failure to complete, or update, and return to the Center in a timely manner, required registration forms. After the second request for necessary forms, services will be discontinued on the last day of that week.
2. Termination for late pick‑up. The International Day Care Center closes promptly at 6:30 p.m. After two incidents of late pick-up, a warning will be issued. After three late incidents in a 6-month period, termination of services may result.
3. When a child is causing harm to himself or others, due to extreme behavior. Center staff will generally work with the parent or guardian to modify any dangerous behaviors the child is exhibiting prior to terminating services. However, since the intent is to provide a safe and non‑threatening environment for all children, we reserve the right to terminate a child’s enrollment immediately.
4. If The International Day Care Center is not able to meet the child’s needs.
5. Behavior of the parent/guardian that may include harassment, verbal abuse, or physical abuse toward the International Day Care Center staff, clients or visitors may result in immediate termination of enrollment. Legal steps may also be taken against the offending person if warranted.
6. Use of Center staff or volunteers to care for your child outside of the Center. The International day Care Center is faced with legal liability in any instance in which our staff member or volunteer cares for Center children outside of the Center. Because of this, any instance in which a Center staff member or volunteer cares for Center children outside of the Center may result in termination of the child from the program and/or termination of employment of the staff member.
7. The International Day Care Center reserves the right to terminate services or refuse services for any reason.
Open Door Policy
Parents who have children enrolled in the International Day Care Center are invited to visit the Center at any time!