Policies

Attendance

Classroom activity begins promptly at 8:30 a.m. It is the policy of the school that children arrive between 8:15 and 8:30 a.m. If you arrive with your child after 8:30, you must bring your child to the office for drop-off in order to minimize the disruption to the class. A staff member will then take the student to the classroom.

If your child will be absent, please call the school office before 9:00 a.m. If someone is not available to answer the phone, leave a message in the voice mail system.

The school day ends at 3:45 p.m. Students not enrolled in Extended Day should be picked up no later than 4:00 p.m. If you need to pick up your child early, please notify your child’s lead teacher and the Program Director.

If a parent does not arrive by 5:30 p.m., the Extended Day staff will follow these guidelines:

  1. Try to contact the parent(s).
  2. If the parent(s) cannot be reached, call the emergency contact person listed on the child’s emergency card. Have that person help locate the parents.
  3. If the parents cannot be located, the emergency contact person may take the child off school property without a child release form. The Director and/or Board President will be made aware that the emergency contact has picked up the child.

If the emergency contact person and/or the parents cannot be reached, the child will remain at school. If the Extended Care worker needs to leave the school another staff member will be called to stay with the child. When these conditions have been exhausted and the parents or the emergency contact are still not located by 7:00 p.m., one or more of these steps may be taken: 1) contact the Prairie Village Police Department, 2) contact the Kansas Department for Children and Families.

Lunch & Snack

GMA contracts with Eat Good Food Company to provide healthy, whole-foods based lunches and snacks for children and teachers. Lunches include one item from each of the following: meat, poultry, fish, egg, cheese, peas or beans, or nut butter; two vegetables, two fruits, or one vegetable and one fruit; bread, bread product or cereal; and milk. Lunches are served family style in the classroom and teachers use lunch time as an opportunity to model proper table manners, conversation skills, and cleanup procedures. Lunch and snack is included in the price of tuition. Our snacks are whole-food based and include a combination of fruits, vegetables, proteins, whole grains, and dairy products. Visit the Lunch Menu page to learn more about GMA’s lunch and snack program.

Illness

For the protection of all of the children in our school as well as the health of your own child and family, GMA has the following policies regarding illness. In order to protect the group as a whole, we ask that parents assist us in maintaining a healthy learning environment by keeping sick children at home. All parents will be notified if there is an outbreak of a contagious disease or pest. We will try to keep you updated on the severity and duration as much as possible. Please note that this statement is valid for any symptom that can be contagious, such as vomiting, diarrhea, fever or rash.

In the event of illness or an accident at school, we make every effort to contact you immediately. If this is impossible, we will then contact the person you have identified on your child’s emergency card. Please make sure that we are notified of any changes, so the emergency card information can remain current.

If a child is sick, unable to play outdoors, and/or unable to participate in regular daily activities, they will not be permitted to be at school. Children with infectious illnesses cannot attend school until they have been symptom-free for at least 24 hours and you have a doctor’s note stating they are able to return to school.

When a child may not attend school:

  • Fever – 100.5 degrees or higher including the night before or morning of school. No fever for 24 hours without taking fever-reducing medication. If you had to give your child medicine the night before, that means they cannot come to school the next morning.
  • Rash/Unexplained Rash – Please consult your physician, then provide a doctor’s note stating your child is not contagious.
  • Vomiting and/or Diarrhea – All symptoms must be gone and no vomiting or diarrhea for 24 hours before returning to school.
  • Strep Throat – Child must been seen by a physician for strep test. Children must be on antibiotics (if prescribed) for 24 hours and be without a fever (without taking fever-reducing medication) for 24 hours before returning to school.
  • Flu/Bronchitis/Pneumonia – Must provide a doctor’s note stating your child is not contagious and is allowed to return to school. Must be on antibiotics (if required by your doctor for the diagnosed illness) and no fever for at least 24 hours without taking fever-reducing medication.
  • Ear Infection – Please consult your child’s physician and provide a note from your physician with the diagnosis. Child must be on antibiotics (if prescribed) and no fever for 24 hours before returning (without fever-reducing medication).
  • Conjunctivitis/Pink Eye – Please make an appointment to be seen by your physician. A note from your physician stating your child is no longer contagious must be provided before your child can return to school. Your child must be on eye drops/ antibiotics for 24 hours before the child may return to school.
  • Head Lice – If evidence of lice or nits are present, parents will be notified at the end of the school day. Children may return to school when all lice and nits have been removed.

A child may return when he or she is free from symptoms and no longer infectious. The child should also be well enough to actively participate throughout the day. In any case of serious or unexplained illness, a doctor’s medical clearance may be required prior to admission back into school.

If you have any questions concerning this policy and whether your child should attend, please call before bringing your child to school.

PLEASE BE COURTEOUS OF ALL CHILDREN IN THE SCHOOL, AND REFRAIN FROM BRINGING AN ILL CHILD UNTIL 24 HOURS HAVE PASSED SINCE ANY FEVER, VOMITING, DIARRHEA, OR ANY OTHER COMMUNICABLE SYMPTOMS HAVE OCCURRED WITHOUT THE USE OF FEVER-REDUCING MEDICINES.

Outdoor Play

Each day the children have a scheduled outside play time of at least one hour. Weather and schedules permitting, additional outside times are also encouraged throughout the day. Please make sure that your child dresses according to the weather, especially in the winter with boots, hats, mittens and snow pants. We believe that outdoor activity is important to good health. Please do not ask us to keep your child indoors. If a child is too ill to go outdoors, then that child is too ill to be at school.

Dress Code

We require children wear clothing and shoes they can manage independently. Shoes for running, climbing and walking on rough ground are best for school. Flip-flops or shoes with strings are not recommended. Velcro sneakers and elastic waist pants help younger children gain a sense of accomplishment and independence. Also, help children think about the day’s activities and plan appropriately. Daily activities are more enjoyable when children do not have to worry about their clothing. It is important that your child’s name is well marked on all clothing and belongings that come to school. Please keep clothing and shoes with fictional characters (cartoon characters, superheroes, princesses, etc.) and inappropriate advertising at home.

Items from Home

Please do not allow your child to bring electronics, toys, stuffed animals, gum, candy, pets, or money into the classroom, as these things create problems at school. Students in the Toddler program are not allowed to have pacifiers at any time while at school, no exceptions.

Discipline

Self-discipline is a very important part of the Montessori Method and can benefit children both in and out of school. Therefore, disciplinary measures rarely need to be taken. But when needed, logical consequences or redirection toward new work is most often the method of choice. And, of course, corporal punishment is never used.

If a child exhibits behaviors that are continually disruptive, harmful or destructive, the following steps will be taken:

  1. Teacher intervention
  2. Elevation to the Executive Director with verbal notification to parents
  3. Conference with parents to determine solutions
  4. Possible termination

The timeline of the steps above will depend on the child, the seriousness of the behavior, the responsiveness of the child to the treatment of the program, and the support of the parents. At no time will a child be allowed to endanger others or be destructive to him-/herself, to others, or to the environment.