Policies & Procedures
- Dress, Buckets, Toys
- Field Trips
- Tuition Payments / Early Withdrawal Policy
- School Schedule / School Closing Policy
- Sick Children / Absences
- Discipline Policy
- T-Shirt Sale
Please dress your child in play clothes as they will be actively engaged. Close-toed shoes are preferred. The children will be learning and playing outside, weather permitting. Please mark sweaters, jackets, hats, mittens, etc., with your child’s name. Student attire should not distract from the classroom learning environment and children should dress in conformance with their biological sex. Also, if your child is prone to bathroom accidents, you may send in an extra set of clothing in a Ziploc bag in the bottom of your child’s bucket. Children are routinely taken to the restrooms shortly after arrival and before snack. Chewing gum is not permitted.
Buckets, instead of book bags, will be used to carry things back and forth from home to school. The buckets have proved to be a timesaver because of the ease of putting things in and taking things out. They are a tremendous help in getting the children ready to go home at the end of preschool. Please take note that the bucket system is for teacher use only. Parents may not use it to communicate with other parents.
Toys, stuffed animals, etc. from home should not be brought into the preschool center except for Show-N-Tell.
Each child should bring a labeled water bottle and a healthy snack formthemselves each day. Please make the snack nutritious.
We are a “peanut sensitive” center. Please avoid snacks containing these items:
- ALL nuts - peanuts, cashews, walnuts, pecans, almonds, tree nuts of any kind
- AND any foods made with peanut butter or peanut oil
Some suggestions: veggies, fruit (washed and ready to eat; grapes must be cut in half lengthwise), cheese, crackers, pretzels, yogurt, etc. Each class will be celebrating children’s birthdays by special recognition on or around the child’s birthday. Your child’s teacher will have more information on how birthdays will be celebrated in your child’s classroom.
Adult family members (and/or other close relatives and friends) are encouraged to volunteer in the classroom. Not only is this a great help to the teachers, it is also a good way to establish relationships with the teachers and find out more about what your child is doing at preschool. As well, most children “beam” when a family member accompanies them to preschool. We feel there are great benefits to having parents (and others) involved in a child’s education. We value and appreciate those partnerships.
Due to state law, ALL regular volunteers or volunteers who are responsible for the welfare of children must have required background checks. Volunteers are not permitted to take children to the restroom. Clearances must be on file at the Growing Tree Preschool office.
The required clearances include:
- PA Child Abuse History Clearance
- PA Criminal Record Check
- FBI Fingerprinting OR fingerprinting waiver (if one has lived in PA for 10 consecutive years and has not committed listed crimes)
- GTP’s Volunteer Letter of Understanding
**Volunteers at Growing Tree Preschool will also need to read our Volunteer Guidelines and sign/return the Volunteer Letter of Understanding.
We do not allow younger siblings to accompany volunteers in the classroom.
No weapons, concealed or open, are permitted in the preschool facility or at school sponsored events/activities.
Classes at Growing Tree may participate in 1-2 field trips per year. Siblings may or may not be invited to join the class on field trip days, depending on the trip. Watch for trip information in the family letter. Families will be notified of all field trips/special events. If you have an idea for a field trip, please let us know.
Tuition payments are paid through FACTS are due one month in advance of attendance. September tuition is due August 1 and each subsequent month is due accordingly with the last tuition payment due April 1. The amount remains the same each month regardless of how many days your child attends.
If the student is withdrawn prior to the end of the school year, the month paid ahead will be forfeited. If a student is enrolled for the school year and is withdrawn prior to August 1, no penalty will be incurred.
Each day explorers need to bring to school a healthy lunch that follows our snack guidelines. Please send lunch in kid friendly containers/packaging. Keep in mind that lunches will not be refrigerated and the classroom does not have access to a microwave.
For rest time each day, students will be provided with a 1-inch foam sleeping mat. We ask that each student bring a small blanket and/or small stuffed animal that fits into a small cinch bag provided by Growing Tree. Additional information will be provided for you at Mini Session. This bag with your child’s blanket/and or stuffed animal will remain in the classroom and be sent home periodically to be cleaned.
Our schedule is closely related to Shalom’s school calendar. In inclement weather, if Shalom is closed, Growing Tree Preschool will also be closed. If Shalom is operating on a two hour delay because of weather, Growing Tree Preschool will operate on a modified schedule, holding morning classes from
10:30 am to 12:00 pm and Explorers from 10:30 am to 2:45 pm. Keep in mind that you may choose NOT to bring your child in bad weather. Use your own
discretion on whether the roads you travel are safe or not.
Information regarding closings and delays may be accessed on Growing Tree Preschool’s website: www.growingtreepreschool.org. Any closings due to
snow will not be made up.
We need to provide a healthy environment in our classrooms, so you
must keep your child at home when any of the following have occurred within
the last 24 hours:
- Fever or chills
- Excessive Cough
- Congestion or runny nose
- Questionable rash
- Sore throat
- Discharging ear/ear ache
- Muscle or body aches
- Discharge in or around the eyes
- Shortness of breath or difficulty
- Any communicable disease
Parents/guardians are responsible for screening their child before coming to school. If your child becomes ill while at school, we will notify you to pick up your child promptly.
If your child is going to be absent, please notify the teacher so that proper adjustments can be made. Parents may call the preschool classroom phone between 8:30 am and 8:55 am or between 11:30 am and 12:10 pm.
It is our desire to develop qualities of cooperation, compliance, self control, and consideration of others. Clear and consistent rules will be followed, using positive reinforcement rather than criticism. Growing Tree Preschool will be implementing 1, 2, 3 Magic. This program organizes the classroom discipline strategy into three steps: controlling undesirable behavior, encouraging good behavior, and strengthening relationships with students. Teachers will “count” behavior that needs stopped. “1” is a warning. If a child continues the behavior, they are warned again with a “2”. If a child gets to “3”, a three to five minute “time-out” or TOA (time out alternative) will be used as a disciplinary measure. For serious offenses and repeated misbehavior, parents will be contacted.
Growing Tree Preschool has several copies of the 1, 2, 3 Magic materials (book/videos) which families may borrow. Please contact the GTP office if you
We will be conducting a ‘Race for Education’ Walk-A-Thon in October. We anticipate 100% participation as this is the ONLY fundraiser we do. The walk-a-thon will take place on campus at Shalom Christian Academy during the school day and all students will participate in it. Children who participate will qualify for prizes both individually and as a class. Funds raised will be used to purchase supplies, materials, additional furniture/equipment, and professional development for teachers.
Communication between families and teachers is vital in a child’s education. If you have specific concerns relating to your child, we would be happy to arrange a day and time to meet with you. We want to be available to you, but also desire to avoid talking in the entrance area and all-purpose room to maintain confidentiality. We will be unable to spend a lot of time before or after class talking with you unless a private meeting time is arranged ahead of time.
In this age of technology, we find that many families use the internet for social networking (i.e., Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc.). We strongly encourage parents to respect the rights of other families and to NOT post pictures of preschool activities that include other preschool children. There are some families who have not given a photo release and we would like to respect their wishes. You will see pictures of GTP children (of whom we have a photo release) on our Facebook page. We will not post names with any picture.
Additionally, our teachers will use a private, educational app called Homeroom. There, you will receive a newsletter and calendar each month informing you of unit themes, special days, memory verses, days off, special activities, etc. which relate to our unit theme or schedule. This will keep you up-to-date on what your child is learning throughout the year.
You will receive emails from the GTP director and/or GTP secretary. You will also receive occasional emails from FACTS our online management system. To ensure proper delivery, please be sure the following email addresses are in your address/contact list:
Parent/teacher conferences will be held late winter/early spring during
the school year and/or on an “as needed” basis. This will be a time where
teachers and parents can discuss children’s strengths and areas of need, and
how they can both be addressed at home and at school. We look forward to
this time of sharing together.