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Parent Handbook

Statement of Services

We are committed to providing a loving Christian learning enrichment program for preschool aged children.  Our preschool will give them encouragement and confidence to transition successfully into kindergarten.  God has created each child with unique abilities, special talents and individual needs. Each child’s total development includes spiritual, emotional, social, mental and physical growth. We believe that each child should be provided an opportunity to develop each of these areas in a Christian environment.

 Birthdays

We recognize that a birthday is very special and children enjoy sharing it with their friends. Parents are welcome to schedule a time to visit the classroom for their child’s birthday celebration by reading a story to the class or sharing a favorite book from home. We kindly ask that no food items be brought to school for birthday celebrations.

Children with a summer or holiday birthday may choose a day during the school year to celebrate. Please sign up with the teacher for a particular day.

 Diapering

  • There will be no diapering in the preschool rooms during preschool hours because the preschool is not licensed to care for infants.
  • Children must be potty trained prior to being accepted for admittance to the preschool program. Children not potty trained will be asked to leave. No pull-ups.

 Discipline Policy

Our discipline policy focuses on teaching the children how God wants us to behave towards others and how to treat God’s world. These skills are integrated with the academic curriculum, so children will learn to apply what they learn in class to the “real world”.

Students will be taught and encouraged to use appropriate behavior in our safe, loving environment. Some ways we do this are:

* Focus on God’s rules for us

              * Brain based learning

              * Teacher gives clear directions

             * Appropriate behavior is discussed before an activity, reinforced during, and                            discussed afterwards

            *  Rules are clear, fair and enforced

            * Environment is physically and emotionally safe

            * Encourage expressing emotions appropriately, label them, discuss ways to show                    them, feel empathy

            * Keep the students interested, switching between focused time to down time, etc.

            * Include hands –on activities throughout the morning

            * Engage multiple intelligences to reach each child’s major learning styles and                         expose them to other ways of learning

Some prevention and consequences that we will use are:

Redirect to another activity

Build relationships

Sit out/discuss and pray/try again

Our preschool is an extension of the home and we expect cooperation between our staff and parents/guardians in the care and discipline of the children.

If continuous discipline problems do arise, parents, teachers and a director will work together to create a positive learning environment for the child and those around him/her.


“Students are just trying to manage their everyday lives… They have normal needs, for expression, control, attention, and love. Some of the ways they express their needs are inappropriate for the classroom; and part of our job is showing them appropriate alternatives.” Brain Based Learning


If a child is out of control and in danger of hurting themselves or another person, we will follow some or all of these steps:

1. Hold them firmly until they are in control (according to State Code R9-5-510 A.3)

2. Explain why the behavior is not allowed, discuss alternatives, and try again                           with supervision.

3. Isolate the child for 3-4 minutes (yet still in eyesight and under supervision of                       a teacher/director).

4. Meeting with parents/guardians.

5. In the case of extreme aggressive or combative behavior, parent or guardian will be                   contacted to pick up the child immediately.

6. Refusal to readmit child to the preschool. 

 Dress Code - Students

  1. Play clothes are best for school wear. Clothes should be easy for the children to undo so they can take care of bathroom needs on their own.
  2. Shoes that close at the back, preferably closed toe also.
  3. Tank dresses and tops need to be at least 1 inch wide at the shoulder.
  4. Shirts and tops must be at least down to the waist. No bare midriffs.
  5. Excessively baggy pants or pants that hang below the waist are not acceptable, to the discretion of the teachers/director.
  6. Clothes with pictures/slogans must be conducive to a Christian school setting.
  7. Removable clothing, such as jackets or hats, should be marked plainly with the child’s name.

 Due Processing Rights

 Any Sanctions, Denial or Legal Injunctions will be posted and be available in the Preschool Office for public viewing.

 Emergency Medical Procedures

In case of emergency in which medical attention is required, we will immediately call the first person identified on the blue emergency card, which was completed at time of enrollment. If unable to reach that person, we will contact the second person, etc. Emergency procedures will be followed, as listed in the teacher handbook. All notification will be documented and required reports will be sent to ADHS. Incident reports will be completed by the teacher and given to the parent.

 Field Trip Policy

We will not be taking any field trips off of the First United Methodist Church of Gilbert campus.  However, we will have guests come to our preschool for special presentations related to our learning about God’s World.

 Holiday Policy

1st UMC of Gilbert Preschool celebrates holidays with a Christian emphasis.  During the Fall we have a Fall Harvest party.  The children may dress up in cheerful, positive costumes.  During December we celebrate the JOY of Jesus’ birth.  At Easter we learn of the resurrection of Jesus and celebrate new life with Springtime activities.

 Immunizations

Most recent information from Center for Disease Control and Prevention, click here

 Insurance

First United Methodist Church of Gilbert Preschool carries liability insurance as required by law. The documentation of the liability insurance coverage is available for review, in the Preschool Office.

 Keep your child home if....

Every year, some children become ill because of exposure to other ill children in the classroom. We have put together this list of indicators to help you make decisions about whether or not to send your child to preschool. If your child displays any of these symptoms, please keep him/her at home.

  1. Fever over 100 degrees. A child must be fever free for 24 hours before returning to preschool.
  2. Persistent cough.
  3. Sore throat with fever and/or white spots on the throat.
  4. Rash with fever (such as chicken pox, measles, etc.)
  5. Nausea, vomiting or diarrhea.
  6. Red, itchy, and draining eyes- if conjunctivitis or “pink eye” is diagnosed, the child must be on medication for 24 hours before returning to preschool.
  7. Prolonged headache and stomachache.
  8. Earache.
  9. Toothache.
  10. Head lice- a child must remain at home until treated with medicated lice shampoo and all the nits are removed. Please notify the teacher or director.

** Please notify the preschool staff as soon as possible to report an enrolled child with a contagious disease or infection.

 Medication

Medications may not be dispensed at preschool, with the exception of an epipen.  If necessary, the director may store epipen in a locked cabinet in the office and will be dispensed in accordance with the pharmaceutical label after completion of the form authorizing dispensing of medication.  Children may not bring vitamins, lip medication, cough drops, etc. on campus.

 Notice of Pesticide Application

In accordance with Structural Pest Control Commission , Arizona Revised Statue (A.R.S. 32-2307) we are required to post notification at least seventy two hours in advance of any pesticide application.

 Nutrition

A nutritious snack is served each morning with 2 food groups represented. A snack calendar is posted inside each classroom. Depending on the theme of the week, children may make the snack themselves.  No homemade items are permitted, according to state regulations.

Children practice good manners during snack time by taking turns serving each other, saying “Please” and “Thank You”, praying together, waiting until all are served to eat and waiting until all are finished to be excused.

 In order to comply with the U.S. Americans with Disabilities Act and to keep those students with a deadly form of nut allergy safe at school we are a “Nut Free School”.
Be sure to write any allergies on the child’s medical card..

 Parent Involvement

Parent involvement is crucial for the children, school and church. Each family is expected to spend at least 5 hours throughout the school year helping in one or more ways with the Preschool or with the Children’s Ministry. The directors and teachers will have a list of volunteer opportunities.

            Parents may have access to all areas of designated preschool rooms during hours of operation after signing in with the Director and must be escorted by a member of the preschool staff.

 Social Network & Networking Websites Policy

Communicate in a manner that honors Christ and demonstrates

 His love for others.

 Our responsibility to lead the church by example as

followers of Jesus includes the online social media.

 Preschool Sponsored – Web Sites and Social Media

Preschool authorized web sites and social media are used to communicate information about our preschool, raise awareness of church and preschool activities and events, and communicate our mission to teach about God. When communicating through any social media we must ensure that the content and style used maintains our identity, integrity and reputation.

  • Only authorized staff may create sites that represent the preschool. Authorized staff to include the directors, teaching staff and committee members.
  • Online postings are used to make announcements and promote upcoming events.
  • All online communication will be factual and positive in nature.  Content will be worded with great care to avoid unnecessarily offending any group or individual.
  •  Any comment that is offensive or does not represent our mission and values will be deleted.
  • Online postings will not disclose any information that is confidential. Any request for prayers should be directed to the church Prayer Chain committee, not communicated through social network sites.
  • At no time will information or photos regarding specific students and preschool families be posted on line.  No student names, addresses or phone numbers will be used.
  • To ensure the privacy and integrity of our students and preschool families any posting of names or photos will be promptly deleted.
  • To ensure the privacy of staff members, any information or photos posted will be related to the preschool and subject to their approval.

 Special Needs

1st UMC of Gilbert Preschool desires to meet the needs of its students in every developmental and academic area possible.  However, if a child has special needs which our curriculum, staff or classroom cannot provide, or the need requires more intensive or specialized intervention than we can offer, then it is in the best interest of the child that his/her parents place their child in another environment which will be able to accommodate his/her specific needs.  Please discuss your child’s needs with the directors prior to enrollment in the preschool.

 Student Withdrawal Policy

A two week written notice is required for the withdrawal of any student. Prepaid tuition will be prorated and refunded with a two week written notice. All Registration fees are non-refundable. All accounts must be paid in full at the time of the student’s withdrawal.  We are required by the state law to maintain your child’s records for 12 months from the date of disenrollment. .

 Student Drop off and Pick Up Policy

The classroom doors will open each day at 8:55am. Preschool classes will end promptly. A late fee of $15.00 will be charged for any child picked up 15 minutes after the class has ended.

Only the names listed on your blue emergency card will be permitted to pick up your child. Before releasing a child to an individual other than a parent, we will require the individual picking up the child to present picture identification.

In accordance with ADHS Office of Child Care Licensing Code Rp-5-303. 3, we will not release a child to an individual other than a child’s parent or other individual designated in writing by a parent except when the parent is unable to collect the child and authorizes the licensee by telephone to release the child to an individual not so designated. We shall verify the telephone authorization by using the Telephone Authorization Code listed on the students Blue Card. The parent must return to us in writing the reason they were not able to pick up the child and the name of the individual who was authorized to pick up the child.

State regulations require that each child be signed in and out daily, with the full first and last name of the authorized person picking up and dropping off the child.

 Sun Safety

Our outside play area will have shade.  If the weather is predicted to be over 105 degrees F., then large motor activities will be held inside. Parents may apply sunscreen prior to children coming to school. Teachers and staff are not permitted to apply sunscreen to students.   

 Transportation

   We do not provide any transportation. 

 What to Bring from Home

A change of clean clothes (shirt, shorts/pants, underwear, socks) stored in a labeled plastic bag.  Jacket- on cool days, labeled with child’s name.  School Bag.