A Parents Guide to Policies and Procedures Westminster Childrens After School Society
There are only two lasting bequests we can hope to give our children. One is roots, the other is wings.
Westminster Childrens After School Society
Purpose of the Centres
WCAS Out-Of-School Care Programs provide a safe, warm environment that seeks to meet the needs of all children, ages 5 thru 12. Children enrolled in our programs must be attending school prior to starting school aged programming. WCAS Centres are inclusive and seek to promote self-confidence and responsibility with creative choices for each child, supervised at an age-appropriate level.
WE BELIEVE School-aged children are at an age of continual testing, making decisions about what is right and wrong, and learning appropriate behavior.
WE BELIEVE In teaching children that there are other options when dealing with most situations; we try to help children make the best choices
WE BELIEVE Consistency, routine and communication are essential ingredients in a happy, successful Centre.
Objectives of the Centre
1. To operate during hours when supervision for children of working parents is most needed.
2. To endeavor to meet the needs of every child by offering a wide range of group and individual activities.
3. To provide staff who will recognize individual needs and allow time for them and offer more than just a baby-sitting service.
4. To provide cooperative assistance to the working parent in giving guidance and direction to their child. Parental responsibility is essential, and the kind of supervision their child will receive ultimately rests with the parent.
5. To provide cooperative assistance to the working parent in giving guidance and direction to their child.
6. To establish reasonable limits and expectations for each child, consistent with the child’s ability to understand them.
7. To make use of available resources within the community for the benefits of the children and staff.
Upon registration, a customer deposit in the amount of $100 per child is required to reserve the space. In the event of cancellation, this deposit is non-refundable.
When a child is registered, the parent or guardian is required to fill out a Registration package, including a Registration Form, an emergency Information From, an earthquake Contact Form, Pre-authorized Debit Authorization (PAD) form and a Pickup Instructions Form.
A signed copy of the Parent Agreement package along with the $100 deposit and the PAD payment form must be returned to the Team Coordinator before the child can be formally enrolled in the out-of-school care program.
It is the direct responsibility of the parent/guardian to advise the Centre of any changes in address, telephone numbers, alternate pickup person(s) and times, medical information, etc. These records are essential to the well-being of the child and are updated annually each September. Information will only be released to the legal guardian(s) or persons authorized by the legal guardian(s).
Note: If there is a matter regarding financial payments please arrange to meet with the Director of Programs to discuss different options available.
The child will be accepted into the Centre and the first month of fulltime attendance will be a probationary period. If, after attending the Centre on a fulltime basis for one month, the Centre is unable to meet the needs of the child, the parent will be asked to find alternative childcare arrangements.
Although all files are confidential, the Fraser Health Licensing Officer has access to all files in accordance with legislation.
If an out-of-school program is full, a waiting list is kept with the names of families wanting care. Priority is given on a first come first serve basis. If a spot becomes available, the first family on the list is contacted by phone and/or email. If their needs have changed, the next family is contacted, etc. until a replacement is found. Preference will be given to siblings of children already enrolled in the program. If a Centre provides care for children attending another school (i.e. Park Place) children attending the school where the Centre is located will be given priority. Preference for the Spring Break, summer and winter programs is given to children previously enrolled in these programs.
The Centres have a special registration procedure for the Summer program. Children already registered in the Centre will be given priority but must register by the deadline provided on the registration forms. Spaces not filled by the deadline will be made available to parents/other families within the community needing summer care only. A full one Calendar months’ notice prior to the 1st of the month registered in, is necessary to change weeks booked over the summer months. Post-dated cheques are required at the time of registration for all registered weeks. Provided the Team Coordinator is notified by the given deadline date, children current enrolled will have a reserved space in September if they wish to take their children out for the summer and continue the following September.
Fees for Before and After School Program
Current fees are $425 per month, per child for full time care are due and payable by the First day of each month and will be processed by way of pre-authorized automatic debit (PAD) and is a requirement of registration.
No exception will be made.
In the event a payment is returned NSF, a $25 late charge and a $20 bank-processing fee will be added to the amount owing. The total amount will be re-cleared within three business days. If arrears are not paid by the 20th day of the month, your child’s space will be revoked, and care will no longer be provided. If a child is taken out of the Centre during the school year for holidays, you will be required to pay for the full month to retain the space. Arrangement for July and August are to be made by May each year and require a month’s notice for any changes.
Parents will receive statements and notices outlining arrears. If arrears are not paid as outlined by written notice, the amount owing will be sent to a collection agency.
A $100 customer deposit is required upon registration. The deposit will be held on account. One full Calendar month’s written notice is required, before the end of the previous month, to withdraw a child from the Centre. A refund will be issued once the child has left the program, providing that all fees owing are paid and notice to withdraw has been given in time. If the child is withdrawn without prior notice, the $100 customer deposit is non- refundable.
Receipts are issued once a year, in February, for income tax purposes, or when a child is withdrawn from the Centre. Monthly receipts will not be provided as proof of payment will be reflected in personal bank statements. Receipts are issued immediately for cash payment.
For parent’s receiving the Affordable Child Care Benefit, the written ACCB authorization and a $100 customer deposit are required upon registration. Please note, parents may be required to pay a parent-portion based on the approved ABBC coverage. Parent Portions are due the First day of each month and will be processed by way of pre-authorized automatic debit.
Release of a Child
Children will only be released from the child care center to an authorized individual.
Aside from themselves a parent/legal guardian must authorize up to 3 individuals to pick up a child from child care on the registration form. Authorized individuals will be required to present valid identification to pick up any child from the child care.
Please notify the Centre if an unauthorized person will be picking up your child. Verbal or written permission must be received before we will release a child to anyone who is not authorized on the registration form. We will not allow your child to leave with an unauthorized person without previous permission. We are so sorry but if we do not recognize someone, we will ask for picture ID.
All parents/guardians/authorized pick up must make sure that a WCAS staff person recognizes that the child has been dropped off or is being picked up from child care.
If an authorized person arrives to pick up a child and staff feel the person is unable to provide appropriate care for the child, they will be asked to make alternate arrangements. If they insist on taking the child, staff will notify the appropriate authorities.
Unauthorized Pick up
If we cannot verify the pick-up person, we will not be able to release the child to them. The child will remain at the center until the legal guardian/parent/person on the pick-up list arrives. In an emergency we will accept a phone call/email from the parent/guardian. We may ask you questions to confirm your identity if we do not recognize your voice/email. The Police may be called for assistance if required. This is for the safety and protection of your child.
Custody and Related Court Orders
The Child Care staff cannot become involved in the marital or custody issues of the families that we serve. If a custody or court order exists, a copy of the order needs to be placed in the child’s file.
The guardian is responsible for providing up to date and accurate information concerning the legal guardianship of the child.
Without a custody or court order on file, the caregiver cannot deny access to the non-registering parent. If the non-registering parent is not listed on the pickup list, the policy on unauthorized persons will be implemented. The guardian will provide all consents.
Duty to Report Abuse or Suspected Abuse
The Child, Family and Community Service Act (CFCSA) requires that anyone who has reason to believe that a child or youth has been or is likely to be abused or neglected, and that the parent/guardian is unwilling or unable to protect the child or youth, must report the suspected abuse or neglect to a child welfare worker. If a WCAS staff member believed or has reason to believe that a child/youth has been or is likely to be abused will report this to the appropriate authorities.
Late Pick-up Fee Charge
It is the parents’ responsibility to have their child picked up by 6:00PM. All Centres close at 6:00PM. It is against licensing regulations to leave any child unattended. If parents have an emergency, please have an alternate pick up plan for the child. Parents who arrive at the Centre later than 6:00PM will be charged $10 for every 15 minutes or portion thereof that they are late (this is per child). This money is payable immediately upon pickup for each child and is payable directly to the staff on-duty at the time.
Things to Know
If your child has not arrived at the Centre after dismissal from school in the afternoon, the staff will notify you. If your child will not be attending on any given day, they are enrolled to attend please advise the Centre.
Children must check in and be recorded on the attendance sheet.
It is the parents’ responsibility to sign the child in every morning and sign the child out in the afternoon/evening.
Please be prompt in picking up your child. If you are detained and will be late, please phone the Centre and let the staff know when to expect you.
If there is no communication of late pick-up or attendance, a staff member will phone your home and place of employment.
If there is no answer, the alternate person listed on the registration form will be contacted.
If no one is available, as a last resort, the Ministry for Children and Families will be contacted to come and get your child. You may phone (604) 660-8180 to learn the whereabouts of your child.
The Centre provides quality programs with a variety of activities, which are both enjoyable and stimulating for the children. For this reason, it is our goal that all staff members have had training and/or experience in the field of childcare, and in addition, have their own individual area of training and expertise. It is our policy that all staff members hired by the Society are to be trained in Emergency First Aid. All staff must also have a clear Criminal Record Check and up-to-date immunization records in accordance with licensing regulations.
Each Centre provides a nourishing snack each afternoon. Children must provide their own lunches. On full days the Centre provides snacks in the morning and afternoon. Healthy and nutritious foods are encouraged, and parents will be asked to please leave candy and gums at home. Please ensure that the Team Coordinators and staff are informed of all allergies. Please be aware that all WCAS Centre’s do not have the ability to heat up any children’s lunches. Please be sure to send a lunch with your child that does not require heating up.
Health and Medication Policy – Ill Children Infectious Illnesses and their Symptoms:
Chicken Pox: Slight fever, blister-type rash
Fifth Disease: Raised, red, warm rash, first appearing on cheeks
Hand/Foot/Mouth Disease: Fever sore throat, small greyish blisters in mouth
Impetigo: Skin infection with moist purulent, yellow crusted sores surrounded by redness
Influenza (Flu): Fever, headache, muscular aches & pains, exhaustion, runny nose, sore throat. Sometimes nausea, vomiting, diarrhea
Measles: Fever, inflamed eyes, dry cough, runny nose, red blotchy rash, white spots in mouth
Meningococcal Meningitis: Fever, intense headache, nausea, vomiting, stiff neck
Mononucleosis: Acute fever, sore throat, swollen glands, tiredness
Mumps: Fever, headache and inflammation of the salivary glands – sometimes there is no swelling
Pertussis: Runny nose, repeated violent coughing followed by characteristic whoop
Pink Eyes: Teary, red, irritated itchy eyes with swollen lids and thick yellow discharge
Parents are required to keep children at home in the event of an illness. If a child arrives at the Centre, and the staff determines the child has a fever or is too ill to be there, the child’s parent(s) will be called to come and take the child home. If the parent(s) cannot be reached, the emergency contact will be called. If the child becomes ill during school, it is the school’s responsibility to follow their emergency procedures, and contact someone to pick up the child. A sick child will not be accepted into the Centre from school.
Until the pickup person arrives, the child will be kept in isolation, away from the other children to prevent spreading infection, with a staff in attendance. If a child is bleeding, vomiting, urinating, or defecating, universal precautions will be used in handling any bodily fluids. Disposable rubber gloves will be used, and any contaminated area will be sprayed with a bleach mixture (1tps. bleach in 2 cups of water) to disinfect it.
Adults and children should practice good personal hygiene, including washing hands carefully after toileting, sneezing and coughing, after touching pets and animals, and before food preparation, to help prevent the spread of infection. Adults and children should also cover their mouth and nose when sneezing and coughing and dispose of articles soiled with discharge from the nose and/or mouth.
If a child appears to have an infectious disease the above safety procedure will be followed. In the case of pinkeye, the child can return once treatment has begun. In the event of other infectious diseases, the child can return once a doctor has indicated the child is no longer contagious.
In the case of Head Lice, if discovered while the child attends the Centre the parents/guardians will be called to pick up the child immediately as with other illnesses.
In the case of a child with Head Lice the Parents/guardians follow through on the accepted treatment (over the counter and/or prescription) and the child may return to the Centre 24 hours after following through of accepted treatment. All dress up clothes and hats will have to be washed, and a general cleanup of the cubby area will help to prevent spread of Head Lice.
All infectious or contagious conditions will be reported to the Fraser Health Unit, the school, and the other parents in the program.
Administration of Medications
In accordance with Ministry of Health guidelines, if it is necessary that prescription medication be administered while a child is in the care of the Centre, a completed permission form must be received and on file. Medication must be in the original container. A staff member will administer the medication in the amount/time indicated on the original prescription. In order to administer any non-prescription medication, a consent form must be filled out and signed by the child’s Dr stating that the child is able to take this medication. This consent form must also be signed by the legal guardian of the child the Centre must receive and have on file prior to non-prescription medication being administered by any WCAS staff member. Details, including frequency, time and amount to be administered must be specified. Forms are available at each Centre. Children must not keep their own medication in their backpacks. This puts other children at risk, as they will then have access to it.
WCAS aims to promote a positive attitude towards skin protection and take effective measures to ensure the children’s safety from the sun. The staff members will have the children apply and reapply sunscreen when needed prior to outdoors and during prolonged outdoor activities. Provided the appropriate consent forms (see registration package) have been filled out by the child’s parent/guardian the staff members will assist the children with applying sunscreen when needed. In accordance with the Ministry of Health’s guidelines all staff will use disposable gloves when assisting/applying sunscreen to children and will change gloves between every new application. Sunscreen must be supplied by the parents/guardians in the original bottle, labelled with each child’s full name. Please provide a hat for your child each time they attend, and our staff will ensure your child is wearing it prior to going outside.
As per local municipal and government guidelines smoking, holding a lite cigarette or use of an e-cigarette is strictly prohibited on all WCAS Centre grounds this includes any outdoor play spaces as well as pathways.
Time is set aside each day for special activities such as arts and crafts, sports, games, clubs and outdoor free play. However, there is always time for child-initiated play, with the choice of a quiet activity alone or with a friend. Part of everyday may be spent outside as per licensing requirements. Screen-time is also limited as per regulations.
Excursions/field trips are planned and parents will be given ample notice prior to a trip, except for outings in the immediate neighborhood of the school.
Program schedules of activities and outings will be made available before Winter Break, Spring Break and Summer Break. Please note that schedules are tentative and may be adjusted to suit the needs of the Centre. The staff reserves the right to ask all children to participate in an outing if there are not enough children to keep back at the Centre. At no time, will a staff member stay back at the Centre alone with a child while the others attend an outing. This policy is in effect due to Licensing Regulations and Supported Child Care policy. If a parent denies permission for a child to attend a field trip, it is the parent’s responsibility to make alternate care arrangements for the child on that day.
While on a field trip, the staff carries a first aid kit and cell phone in case of emergencies. Please be sure to know the cell phone number as well as the phone number for the Centre.
Please note that unless it is due to an emergency or unforeseen circumstance no child is to be dropped off/picked up while the program is on a field trip. All drop offs and pickups are to be done at the WCAS Centre’s.
On any field trip to a beach, the children will be allowed to wade only. Swimming will not be permitted.
Direct supervision always requires the responsible staff to be :
In the water or at the water’s edge directly watching the child/children.
Aware of each child’s whereabouts and physical condition.
Close enough to each child to reach him/her immediately and prevent harm to the child.
ACTIVE PLAY & SCREEN TIME POLICY
In accordance with section 4.1.e of the Community Care and Assisted Living Act, Westminster Children’s Afterschool Society has the following active play and screen time policy in place.
Active Play promotes a children’s health and wellness by requiring licensed child care facilities to ensure children are active daily. Licensed child care facilities are required to develop both an active play and screen time policy. All programs must limit screen time (TV, computers, electronic games) to 30 minutes a day. Children who attend a program for three or less hours and children under the age of two should not be offered screen time. Additionally, group child care facilities for school age children must provided a minimum of 60 minutes per day of outdoor active play (indoor active play is acceptable when weather is poor or outdoor physical space is limited). Active play may be accumulated through 15-minute portions of time throughout the day or continuously.
What is ACTIVE PLAY?
Active play is physical activity which includes moderate to vigorous bursts of high energy, raises children’s heart rate, and may make them “huff and puff” such as running or jumping.
Standard of Practice
Staff shall provide the children in their care 60 minutes of active play time throughout the day (7am to 9am & 3pm to 6pm). Active play may be accumulated through 15-minute portions of time throughout the day. Staff shall ensure that active play occurs outdoors whenever possible. Indoor active play is acceptable when weather conditions are poor or when outdoor physical space is limited. Active play should include activities that promote healthy growth and development. It should support body control and movement with a strong focus on physical literacy (ie, gross and fine motor skills to help build strong bones and muscles to improve balance and coordination). Active play must include a variety of un-facilitated play (such as dancing, jumping, running around play space or park during free play activities, games of tag or sports initiated by a group of children) and facilitated games and activities (such as organized sports, staff led games of tag, follow the leader, yoga, cat and mouse, capture the flag, classroom circuit, etc). Short bursts of activity for one to two minutes should be scheduled in activities where children may be sitting for prolonged periods of time (ie. stretching, follow the leader, quick walk/lap around the center). Programs where children are in attendance for less than 3 hours must develop an active play plan acceptable to the Licensing Officer. Many of our centers have incorporated a walk to school program, playground play, morning yoga and circuit sessions of 15 to 20 minutes during the 7am to 9am portion of our program to provide active play for children in the morning. Staff are to participate in active play activities to demonstrate appropriate modelling.
Screen time is time spent using electronic devices such as TV, video game consoles, cellphones, computers, and videos. Westminster Children’s Afterschool Society understands that TV and other screen time can get in the way of playtime, physical activity, and interactions with others, which all contribute to learning and healthy physical/social development. As a result, in adherence to the screen time policy, we permit 30 minutes or less of educational, age appropriate screen time per day. Programs where children are in attendance for less than 3 hours will not include screen time activities into the daily routine.
All the above polices will be further reviewed, within individual centers and to plan their daily routines in accordance to the listed policies pertaining to active play and screen time.
All children should wear washable, comfortable clothing while at the Centre, appropriate for the weather. It is of great assistance to everyone if the child’s clothing and boots are labeled.
All children and staff are required to wear WCAS T-Shirts on field trip days.
******* Please Note********
Respect is the key to all behavioural management in the Centres. This includes respect for oneself, other children, and staff as well as toys and supplies in the Centre. Any consequence laid out by the staff will relate directly to the child’s behavior. Staff will ensure this relationship is made clear to the child. WCAS feels that it is best to deal with the children when and where a problem occurs. However, it is important that the child realizes that parents are kept informed of the behaviours and incidents that occur in the Centre. On occasion, if the Team Coordinator feels it could be beneficial, reinforcement from home may be advised.
The Centre will notify parents if their child’s behaviour becomes a problem, and a consultative process will be initiated as per our Discipline Policy. If, in the opinion of the staff and the Director of Programs, the Centre can no longer meet the needs of your child or family, the family will be asked to find alternative care for their child.
The goal of the Discipline Policy is to assist children in developing self-control, self-confidence and ultimately, self-discipline and sensitivity in their interactions with others.
Children are expected to behave as outlined in the Social Contract posted at each Centre. The key to all behaviour expectations is respect: for the children and staff, for the toys and equipment, and for the Centre itself.
At no time, will children be subjected to shoving, hitting, shaking, or any other form of corporal punishment, harsh, belittling or degrading treatment, whether verbal, emotional or physical that would humiliate the child or undermine the child’s self-respect; be confined, physically restrained or kept, without adult supervision, apart from other children or deprived of meals, snacks, rest or necessary use of toilet as form of punishment.
Prevention and intervention Strategies:
WCAS encourages children to talk through their own problems and conflicts, and to make appropriate choices and compromises. However, if a child seems unable to cope in a situation, the staff will intervene. The staff will reinforce appropriate behaviors in order to maximize opportunities for desirable behaviour.
If a child makes a choice that infringes on the safety and protection of self, others or the environment, the staff will employ various strategies such as:
Helping the child express feelings verbally
Holding the child to protect him/her and/or other children until self-control is regained. In the event a child is held for safety reasons, an incident report will be filed with the Licensing Officer as required.
Limiting use of equipment
Modeling problem-solving skills
Offering appropriate choices
Setting clearly defined guidelines/limits which are consistently enforced
Time away- this involves the child being removed from the others and discussing with the staff the effects of the undesirable behavior
Using logical and reasonable consequences
If the behaviour becomes unmanageable, the parent(s) and the Director of Programs will be notified, and a meeting will be held with the Team Coordinator, parent(s) and child to discuss strategies. The Director of Programs may attend any/all meetings.
If the strategies agreed upon do not work, the parent(s) will be contacted, and
the child will be suspended for the day. The child will be required to sign a behavior contract before returning to the Centre.
The second such incident will result in a week’s suspension.
The third such incident will result in the parent being given two weeks’ notice to find alternate care for the child.
All such disciplinary actions will be undertaken in consultation with the Director of Programs.
For instance, where the safety of the child, the staff or other children is jeopardized, the Director of Programs will be notified, and a course of action will be decided, which could include advising the parent that care will no longer be provided, and the parent will be required to remove the child immediately from care. The WCAS Board of Directors will be informed of any such action. With the written permission of the parents, the Team Coordinator may consult with the School Staff regarding the child’s behavior in order to determine if it is the Centre specific or a general concern.
If a child’s behaviour during school hours results in the school sending that child home or any form of suspension, the child will not be able to attend the Centre that day and/or the duration of the suspension. Fees will still be charged for any days the child is not in attendance.
WCAS policy regarding questions about sex is as follows: A child’s curiosity about sex is a normal part of a child development. The staff will answer questions as honestly as possible at an age appropriate level. If it is felt that the questions are too sensitive in nature, the staff may choose to redirect the child to the parent, and the parent will be informed of the child’s question. Parents are encouraged to consult with the staff if they have any concerns regarding this.
Lines of Communication
When there is an issue with a childcare staff, the parent should attempt to resolve the issue with the person in question
When the issue cannot be resolved with the person in question the parent should then talk to the Team Coordinator
When the issue is beyond the scope of the Team Coordinator or the issue cannot be resolved at that level, then the parent should speak with the Director of Programs
If the concern has not been addressed to all parties’ satisfaction in a discussion, or if the parent wishes to follow-up in order to have a record, they should write to the Director of Programs and await written response.
If the concern has not been addressed to satisfaction, the Director of Programs will extend the option of submitting the concern in writing to the Board of Directors with an explanation of the concern, steps taken to date and a clear request for the desired outcome
The Board will look at each concern individually to determine if further research is required before any motion is put forward; to table the request and strike a committee to research the complaint; to decline the request; or to acknowledge or grant the request. The Board response must be in writing and within a reasonable time frame.
The Director of Programs is the main contact for the Society and welcomes discussion at any time throughout these steps. The Director of Programs can be contacted via email at firstname.lastname@example.org
All WCAS Centres will be closed on the following days:
New Year’s Day BC Day
Family Day Labour Day
Good Friday Thanksgiving Day
Easter Monday Remembrance Day
Victoria Day Christmas Day
Canada Day Boxing Day
WCAS does reserve the right to and may close center’s on other days/dates throughout the year for Professional development, Administration and or Program development days.
WCAS will endeavor to notify parents/legal guardians of these closures with as much notice as possible so alternate care arrangements can be made.
If the school in which the Centre is located is closed due to inclement weather, natural disaster, infectious disease outbreak or power outage, the Centre will also be closed. Parents are to arrange for alternate care for their child(ren) on that day.
For information on any of our programs, please call the Centre directly, between 7:00AM and 9:00AM or 3:00PM and 6:00PM. If you are unable to reach the Centre, please contact the WCAS Administration Office during regular business hours.
Centres Phone Numbers /Cell Numbers
Dragon’s Grove (Connaught Elementary School)778-985-7473
Griffin’s Alley (Glenbrook Middle School)604-517-5938/604-805-0198
Hilltop Hideaway (Richard McBride School)604-517-5918/604-512-1615
Kid’s Korner (Ecole Qayqayt Elementary School)604-805-0951
Klub Kelvin (Lord Kelvin School) 604-805-0143
Misty Meadows (F.W. Howay School)604-517-6088/604-760-4372
Park Place (Hume Park School)604-517-5998604-805-1206
QE Clubhouse (Queen Elizabeth School)778-237-4383
Kidsborough (Queen Elizabeth School) 604-374-0419
Playwest Kids (Lord Tweedsmuir School) 604-805-2734
Director of Programs 604-540-1688
Administration Officer 604-540-1688