Policies


Inclement Weather

If the Howard County public schools close for inclement weather, First Lutheran Preschool will also close. Parents should listen to the local news to find out about Howard County public school closings. If Howard County Public schools call a 2-hour delay, First Lutheran Preschool will open at 10:00 a.m. and close at the regular time. If Howard County Public schools make an announcement by noon to close early, morning classes will dismiss at the regular time and afternoon classes will be canceled.

Parents/caregivers should sign up for text alerts from www.remind.com to receive texts from the director about closings and special circumstances/announcements.

Clothing and Shoes

We request that all children bring a complete set of extra clothing in case of accidents, including pants, shirt, socks and underwear. All clothing should be clearly marked with your child’s name.

For safety issues and ease of play on our playground, sandals and flip flops are not permitted. Sneakers or tennis shoes are best for climbing, running, and play.

Snacks and Food Allergies

First Lutheran Preschool provides snack for snack time. We serve water, fresh fruit such as apple, orange, or banana slices, and pretzels or crackers. Teachers will notify parents if they are doing a cooking project, and will be sure to share the list of ingredients with parents.

We strive to provide a healthy environment for all children. Parents must provide specific information to the teacher about their child's allergy. If medication is necessary for emergencies, we must receive a medication authorization form provided by the child's doctor, together with an action plan. First Lutheran Preschool does not serve peanuts or tree nuts for snack. Parents should not pack peanuts or tree nuts in their child's lunches. This includes peanut butter.

Birthday Celebrations and School Parties

Our approach to holidays and birthday celebrations is joyous and age appropriate. Knowing that any change in routine can cause anxiety for young children, we are careful to provide fun experiences within the context of the preschool classroom. We celebrate through music, dance, arts & crafts, and (for holidays only), a special snack. Children celebrating their birthdays will receive a birthday crown and a rousing chorus of Happy Birthday sung by their teachers and friends. Due to food allergies, parents are asked not to bring in special treats for holidays or birthdays. Some of the holidays we celebrate are Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas, Valentine's Day, and Easter.

Health and Wellness

First Lutheran Preschool has the responsibility to parents and children to maintain strict standards regarding ill children. A child must be fever free for 24 hours prior to attending school. If a child becomes ill at school, the child’s parent/guardian will be notified and asked to make arrangements to pick up the child within one hour.

Any child diagnosed with a communicable disease (bacterial meningitis, chicken pox, diphtheria, hepatitis, measles, mumps, pneumonia, rubella, strep throat) may return to school when cleared by a physician or nurse practitioner through written notification. If the child’s illness requires antibiotics, he must be treated for 24 hours prior to returning. (Strep throat is an exception that requires 48 hours of treatment prior to returning to school). Please report any communicable or contagious diseases to us immediately.

Major Emergencies: In the event of a life-threatening or major medical emergency to a child at First Lutheran Preschool, one staff member will remain with the injured or ill child while another staff member calls 911. The parent will be notified as soon as medical care has been obtained. If First Lutheran is unable to reach the parent, we will contact one of the emergency contacts listed on the Emergency Form. Transportation to a hospital will be arranged by rescue personnel or the child’s parent.

Discipline

 At First Lutheran Preschool, we achieve discipline in the classroom through an orderly environment that provides clear boundaries and interesting activities. Discipline is an integral part of our curriculum. Our teachers model caring behavior and help children build positive relationships with each other. Teachers also help children learn language so that they can express their feelings appropriately.

Effective Guidance Techniques applied to all children include:

  • Reinforcement of appropriate behavior – smiles, eye contact, verbal praise
  • Modeling of appropriate behavior techniques
  • Redirection of child to another activity
  • Teaching the child to solve his or her own problems using social stories and dialogue to deal with frustration

Time-outs may be used as a “last resort”. The child is always placed where they can be observed and heard by the teacher, and upon the conclusion of the time out, spend time with the teacher reviewing positive ways to behave in the classroom. The duration of the time-out will never exceed one minute for each year of age. Spanking or any type of physical punishment is not permitted at First Lutheran Preschool. In the unlikely event that a child’s negative behavior becomes chronic, parents will be asked to meet with the teacher for a conference in order to more effectively help the child.

Discharge Policy

First Lutheran Preschool reserves the right to drop or terminate service after consultations with parents/caregivers, when the welfare of the child or group would make this advisable. Reasons may include but not be limited to:

  • Lack of parental cooperation
  • Non-payment of fees
  • Inability of the child to adjust to the school
  • Continual late pick-up
  • Inability to meet the needs of the child without hiring additional staff.

Chapel

Chapel takes place in First Lutheran's worship space and occurs every Wednesday morning, Thursday afternoon, and once a month on Thursday morning. During this brief but meaningful time, children are introduced to bible stories, songs, and prayer by one of First Lutheran's pastors or staff members.

Screen Time

Screen time is reserved for educational movies/short films that coincide with the curriculum. They are limited to under 20 minutes long and only on special days.

Toys from Home

Each class may schedule a "sharing" time when children can bring something from home to "share" during circle time. Toys that depict violence and toy weapons are not allowed at school.

Field Trips

Twice a year, each class will have the opportunity to go on a field trip. Field trips will always be related to the curriculum and will provide a concrete learning experience. The admission fees for students are provided by the school. Parents must pay for themselves and siblings. Transportation must be provided by the families.

Potty Training

All students should be able to use the toilet independently before attending First Lutheran Preschool. Our facility does not provide space for the teachers to change diapers or pull-ups.

Parent Conferences

Two formal conferences are held each year for parents to meet with their child's teacher. Parents are also welcome to request a meeting with their child's teacher at any time throughout the school year.

Arrival & Dismissal

Parents and caregivers are asked to walk their child into the Education Building and sign their child in at the door of their classroom.

At dismissal, parents must sign their child out. Teachers will dismiss each child separately after they have made eye contact with the parent/caregiver. Parents must alert First Lutheran Preschool in writing if someone other than the parent will be picking up the child. Verbal consent is not acceptable authorization and does not comply with school policy.