The school office is open each business day from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. If we happen to be unavailable when you call, please leave a message on our voicemail so that we can get back to you. If you wish to speak to the Principal or Vice Principal, please make an appointment through the Administrative Assistant.

All correspondence with parents/guardians will be through email and Transparent Classroom. Parents/Guardians are required to provide their email information upon registering and update the office of any changes to your email. Weekly, the Administration will send a notification through Transparent Classroom to notify the MCS community that the weekly correspondence with all forms, calendars, notices, updates, reminders, etc. has been uploaded. Invoices and statements will be processed and delivered via email.

Children shall arrive at school prior to the time designated for the commencement of classes and be picked up at the time designated for the completion of classes.

Parking Lot

Anyone coming to the Montessori Country School must enter the property via the posted entrance driveway and exit via the posted exit driveway. Our parking lot has a posted speed limit of 10 km/hr. This is to ensure the safety of small children who sometimes get away from their parents. We expect all persons using the parking lot to respect the posted limit. Failure to abide by these procedures will result in a written notice.

Authorization to Pick Up Child

No child will be released to a person other than the child’s parents/guardians, or persons authorized by parents/guardians (i.e. on pick up list), without written or verbal authorization from one of the parents/guardians. If you wish to have someone else pick up your child, please advise us in writing beforehand or let us know by phone or in person. You can avoid writing notes by naming people to your “pick up list”. On the school application form and/or child’s profile sheet, there is a space for writing names of people you authorize to pick up your child. Names can be added or deleted at any time by advising the Administration. Once we know the person on the list, we will not continue to ask for identification. Please be advised that any person on your pick up list can pick up your child but we prefer to have verbal authorization of this from the parents. Persons not on your “pick up list” will need to get a pick up pass from the office in order to have your child released to them. This pass ensures our staff that identification has been verified and permission was given by the parents.

Door Security System

To help ensure the safety of our children and staff, we have a keypad entry security system. Please keep in mind that the effectiveness of the door security system depends on all of us! For example, we can only ensure unauthorized persons are not able to enter the premises if we use the system wisely. We ask that you do not hold the door open for others. All parties must use the main front doors for entry and for exit as well. Everyone entering the school will need to enter their code into the keypad.

There is a two-way speaker system installed beside the key pad system. If you are having trouble with your code, please use the buzzer. This is also to be used by delivery people and visitors. Visitors will then be asked to sign in with the office and will be given a visitor pass.

Codes may be changed periodically throughout the year. New cards with your code on them will be issued at such times.

Entry to & Exit from School Building

All parents/guardians must enter and exit the school via the main front doors (by main office). We require the cooperation of all MCS families in order to ensure school security. Breaches of this policy are unacceptable. All doors other than the main front doors are locked from the outside and are considered fire exits only. Students may only use doors other than the front doors under teacher supervision and may leave via main front doors only under the supervision of a parent/guardian.

Morning Extended Program: 7:00 – 8:30 a.m.

  • Parents/guardians are to park and bring their child(ren) directly to the allocated Extended rooms and ensure that the Extended staff know the child has arrived
  • Toddlers go outdoors to the Toddler playground (weather permitting) or to the Gross Motor Room
  • Casa and Elementary students go outdoors to the Casa playground (weather permitting) or to their classrooms

Drop off: 8:30 – 9:00 a.m.

  • Any 3rd year Casa and Elementary students arriving at the school during this time are encouraged to use the Drop Off system. Parents/Guardians are to pull up to the curb where the child(ren) are safe to get out of the car and into the school. Parents/guardians do not need to leave their vehicles – in fact, the process is expedited by parents/guardians remaining in their vehicles. Once your child has entered the building you may continue through the drop off loop and out the exit. Once inside the school, students can proceed to their classrooms. Young children will be escorted by the assigned drop off staff or, administrative staff, if necessary
  • Toddler and Casa 1st/2nd year parents/guardians must still park and bring their child into the school and check in with the teaching staff

Late Arrival: after 9:00 a.m.

  • Parents/Guardians are encouraged to make every effort to get their child(ren) to school on time
  • Students arriving after 9:00 a.m. must sign-in at the office; the office will call the classroom to have a teacher come and pick the student up.
  • Parents arriving after 9:00 a.m. must leave any communication for the teacher with the office as classes are in session at this time and are not to be interrupted

Pick Up for Half Day Children: 1:00 p.m.

  • Toddler and Casa children who are half day can be picked up directly from their classroom by no later than 1:00 p.m.

Pick Up for Full Day Children: 3:45 – 4:00 p.m.

  • Parents/Guardians may park and enter the school to pick up their children. Toddler and Casa children will be outside in their respective playgrounds (weather permitting). Elementary students will be in their classrooms or an alternate location which will be noted on the white board in the front foyer

Early Pick Up: 9:01 a.m. – 3:45 p.m.

  • Parents/Guardians wishing to pick up their child between 9:01 a.m. and 3:45 p.m. must sign in at the office. We will have a log for you to sign that will ask for the time and your reason for picking up early. While you are filling this out, a member of the administration will call your child(ren) to the office.

Extended Pick Up: 3:45 – 6:00 p.m.

  • Any children not picked up by 3:45 p.m. are taken to our After School Extended programs
  • Toddler Extended will be in the playground (weather permitting) or in their classrooms. At 5:00 p.m. or earlier (depending on season), the children will gather into the Gross Motor Room.
  • Casa Extended will be in the playground (weather permitting) or in their classrooms. At 5:00, all remaining children gather into the Extended Room.
  • Elementary will be in the Elementary Playground (weather permitting) or in the Library. At 5:00, remaining students will be integrated into the Casa Extended Room.
  • Anyone picking up a child during these hours who is not the child’s parent/guardian, whether or not they are on the pick-up list, must check in at the office in order for the child to be released to them.

Shall be paid pursuant to the schedule designated by the school unless alternative arrangements have been made with the Principal. The school reserves the right to request the withdrawal of a child if fees are in arrears. Please see payment policy and Terms of Admissions below:

Tuition: For the school year, all tuition payments are required to be given to the office in the form of post-dated cheques (as per the payment option schedule) before the child starts school. Payments not received will result in the student not considered registered until all post-dated cheques have been received.

Ancillary Services

Ancillary services, such as clubs, hot lunch, day use extended, resource, music lessons, etc. will be billed on a monthly basis. We will be processing all ancillary charges at the end of each month by credit card, debit or cheque payments. This will also provide parents a simple record of all ancillary services that were purchased in the month and be easier for making claims at tax time. It also eliminates the need to prepay for daily extended services. We are very excited to continue this service as it will allow us to spend less time reconciling accounts and more time being of service to our students.

General Terms

  1. The non-refundable registration fee of $200.00 must accompany the application for new children only.
  2. Tuition Fees are payable on the first of each month in accordance with the Tuition Schedule, a copy of which is enclosed.
  3. The child is enrolled until the parent submits a withdrawal form or until the child moves up to the Elementary program. If you temporarily withdraw your child, a $500 non-refundable deposit, submitted with the withdrawal form will be required. The child will be placed on a waiting list as re-enrolment is not guaranteed, and re-admission is subject to availability. Parents will be informed one month prior to re-enrolment if re-admission is accepted. Upon acceptance, the $500 will be processed.
  4. The parents acknowledge and agree that should the child be withdrawn from the program, a minimum of 30 days written notice of the withdrawal is required. If 30 days written notice is not provided, payment in lieu of notice is required. The parent will be responsible for payment of all services rendered (paid or payable) up to the date of withdrawal (including the required notice period). The School will refund tuition fees for services not rendered after the notice period, less the $200 non-refundable registration fee. Parents are not entitled to further reduction or refunds of tuition fees for reasons including, but not limited to; absence, voluntary withdrawal, suspension, cancellation, non-attendance, payment default, expulsion or otherwise.
  5. The school reserves the right to accept or reject this application.
  6. The school has and reserves the right to cancel enrollment and/or expel the student if fees remain outstanding. The parent will remain responsible for payment of all tuition fees, as outlined in Clause 4.

Financial Terms

  1. Payment of tuition fees are made by EFT Payment.
  2. A Sibling Discount outlined on the “Tuition Fee Schedule” will be applied for each additional child from the same family registered in the school. This discount is conditional on all tuition fees being paid by their due dates.
  3. EFT Tuition Payment Form must be submitted upon acceptance of the application to complete enrollment process.
  4. A $50.00 service charge will apply to any item that does not clear the bank for any reason.
  5. Interest will be charged at a rate of 4.5% per month on all overdue accounts, commencing fifteen days after their due date.

General Terms

  1. The non-refundable registration fee of $200.00 must accompany the application for new children only.
  2. Tuition Fees are payable in accordance with the Tuition Schedule, a copy of which is enclosed. Ancillary Fees are payable in accordance with the “Ancillary Fee” schedule, a copy of which is enclosed.
  3. The child is enrolled for the entire school year and the parents hereby agree to and are therefore liable and responsible to pay the full year’s tuition (or the balance thereof if the child is enrolled following the commencement of the school year).
  4. The parents acknowledge and agree that they intend to enroll their child for the entire school year. In the unlikely event where a withdrawal of an Elementary student in the middle of the year is necessary for any reason, the parent will be required to provide a minimum of 30 days written notice of withdrawal. If 30 days notice is not provided, payment in lieu of notice is required. The parent is responsible for payment of all services rendered (paid or payable), plus 55% of the total unused tuition for the remainder of the school year. As such, the school will return 45% of unused tuition, less the 10% non-refundable deposit, by providing a refund by EFT Payment to parents. Parents are not entitled to further reductions or refunds of tuition fees for reasons including, but not limited to; absence, voluntary withdrawal, payment default, suspension, cancellation, non-attendance, dismissal, expulsion or otherwise.
  5. The school has the right to accept or reject this application.
  6. The school has and reserves the right to cancel enrollment and/or expel the student if fees remain outstanding. The parent will remain responsible for payment of all tuition fees, as outlined in Clause 5.

Financial Terms

  1. A 2% discount will be applied to all tuition fees for applications using the single payment method.
  2. Payment of tuition fees made by EFT Payment.
  3. A Sibling discount outlined on the Personalized Tuition Schedule will be applied for each additional child from the same family registered in the school. This discount is conditional on all tuition fees being paid by their due dates.
  4. A $50.00 service charge will apply to any item that does not clear the bank for any reason.
  5. Interest will be charged at a rate of 4.5% per month on all overdue accounts, commencing fifteen days after their due date.

Please put your child’s name on all outer clothing  to avoid confusion and loss.  Each child registered in an Toddler or Casa program will require a bag to hang on their hook for storage of spare clothes or nap items.

Please supply a pair of indoor gym shoes and a complete change of seasonally appropriate clothing, all of which should be labeled with your child’s name.  Since we encourage independence in dressing and undressing, your child should wear shoes that allow independent dressing (e.g. tie up shoes if child can tie laces, Velcro or pull-on style if not).  Clothing should have front fastenings, not back.  Children should come to school with adequate outdoor clothing, including rain pants/splash pants for the fall and spring.  Please bear in mind that whatever a child wears may come home soiled, depending on the outdoor conditions or activities of the day.

There is a “Lost & Found” in the area of the hall that leads out to the Casa & Toddler playgrounds. Please check this box if items are missing.

To avoid loss, children should not bring toys, electronics and jewelry to school, including to any of our Extended programs. However, if they have an item of educational interest that can be discussed in the classroom, check with the classroom teacher for “news” days when it is appropriate for children to bring such items to class. In addition, all electronic devices, including cells phones, will not permitted at the Montessori Country School.

From time to time items go missing from the classroom. Please do not discard items that may come home with your child, as they may be parts of materials that belong to the classroom. Many of these materials contain very small pieces, such as jigsaw puzzle map parts. When in doubt, please check with your child’s teacher. Items that belong to other children should also be returned to your child’s teacher.

In case of extremely severe weather, the school may be closed. We will send an notification through Transparent Classroom to all families informing you of the closure on or before 6:30 a.m. If in doubt, please call the school number any time after 6:30 a.m. There will be a notification on the main line advising of the school closure. Should it become necessary to close the school early on any day because of an emergency, you will be contacted by telephone to advise you that early pick up arrangements are required.

A nutritious peanut/nut free snack will be provided in the before care, morning and afternoon, for all Toddler and Casa children. Elementary students can bring healthy peanut/nut free snacks in their lunch and have them at their classroom snack table in the morning and afternoon. No candies, carbonated drinks, chocolate or gum are allowed in the school.

Elementary children, who are not enrolled in the hot lunch program, are to bring their own lunch. Please ensure the lunch is packed with an ice pack so the food stays fresh. We try to encourage good eating habits and the inclusion of cakes and other sweets make it difficult for the child to concentrate on eating the nutritious foods first. It also causes rivalry among the children. Please pack lunches in reusable containers whenever possible. We aim for a garbage-free lunch box!

Teachers will be encouraging children to finish the main portion of their lunches before starting on treats. Unfinished portions of lunches will be returned to parents so that parents can monitor their child’s eating habits.

Since we have children attending with severe, life-threatening allergies to peanuts and other nuts, we have banned ALL NUTS AND NUT PRODUCTS from the school. Even the tiniest residue of nuts, nut oil, and nuts in cookies, etc. left on a table can be fatal to susceptible children. Therefore, all snacks and lunches brought to school must be free of nuts and nut products. Teachers will check all lunch boxes and discard (if unsealed) or send home (if sealed) excluded items with a reminder notice. This is not just our school policy – it is the law.

Birthday Treats

Nobleton: If you are planning to have your child celebrate their birthday at school, parents must order birthday snacks through the office to be made in our on-site kitchen. Due to allergies and nutrition guidelines, classrooms cannot accept outside food.
Milton Campus: Unfortunately, Milton does not have an on-site kitchen and cannot accept requests for birthday snacks. Due to allergies and nutrition guidelines, classrooms cannot accept outside food.

Parent-Teacher meetings are held three times during the school year for parent-teacher interviews. Appointments will be scheduled after school and in the evening. Parents are expected to attend all three scheduled parent-teacher interviews and be available to meet with the teachers, at mutually convenient times, should specific concerns arise. Concerns and issues about your child or your child’s class should be addressed with the class teachers. Parents/Guardians can make appointments to meet with their child’s teacher through the office or by contacting the teacher by email as well as by speaking to the teacher directly at pick up time. Observation in the classroom is possible (and encouraged) between October through December and, February through June.

Progress Reports will be sent home twice a year, in December and June. Parent-teacher interviews will be held in October, December, and April. The October interviews are intended for parents/guardians to get a sense of how their child is adjusting to the classroom and for the parents/guardians and teachers to set goals for the year. The December conference is intended to inform parents/guardians of the progress thus far. Upper Elementary students are expected to attend all Parent-Teacher Conferences with their parents.

Parents are welcome to contact the classroom teachers and specialist teachers through email to set-up appointments or to express general information that is not time sensitive. As the priority of the teacher is to attend to the children, access to the computer is limited and we can only guarantee a response time of two (2) business days. Changes to pick-up routines should only be expressed through the office. Teachers will also use email or Transparent Classroom to contact you to set-up a meeting, or for reminders such as interview days or special events.

If there is a reason that your child will be absent from class, please inform the school office. This helps us keep an eye on each child’s health and well-being and aids in daily activity planning.

Health authorities require that children’s illnesses are reported to the school. If there is no one in the office at the time you call, please leave a message on our voicemail. Any parents/guardians who do not contact the school when their child is absent will be contacted by the school.

The Toddler and Casa programs are open all year, on every day but Statutory holidays. For the Elementary program, we have three scheduled days for Professional Development during the school year. This is a time for our teachers to attend staff development workshops arranged by the Montessori Country School. Contact with other educators within the Montessori community and beyond is vital to the assessment and development of our own program. While we hesitate to inconvenience schedules of busy parents, our responsibility to the children and the school necessitates working days of this nature. Teachers are also required to do other professional development over the course of the year, but a supply teacher will fill in on these occasions.

The school is closed for all statutory and civic holidays (Christmas Day, Boxing Day, New Year’s Day, Family Day, Good Friday, Easter Monday, Victoria Day, Canada Day, August Civic Holiday, Labour Day). During PD Days, Winter Break and March Break, Elementary camps may be available. Notification for these camps will be sent to parents at the start of the academic year with reminders closer to the dates.

Students under the age of 3 years will have in-house field trips and will not leave the school campus. Children in Casa and Elementary will have both in-house and off-site trips. For each trip, parents/guardians will be given a permission form with the date, details of the trip, transportation and any other pertinent information. The permission forms must be signed and completed through Transparent Classroom by the date noted on the form before the child would be permitted to attend the trip.

Occasionally, we require parent/guardian volunteers to accompany us on off-site field trips. Parents/Guardians are required to have a Vulnerable Sector Check on file in the office. Also, parents/guardians and staff are to adhere to the Supervision Policy for Volunteers. Please note: volunteers will always be supervised and not left alone with the children.

At no time will staff participate in the:
(a) corporal punishment of the child;
(b) physical restraint of the child, such as confining the child to a high chair, car seat, stroller or other device for the purposes of discipline or in lieu of supervision, unless the physical restraint is for the purpose of preventing a child from hurting himself, herself or someone else, and is used only as a last resort and only until the risk of injury is no longer imminent;
(c) locking the exits of the child care centre or home child care premises for the purpose of confining the child, or confining the child in an area or room without adult supervision, unless such confinement occurs during an emergency and is required as part of the licensee’s emergency management policies and procedures;
(d) use of harsh or degrading measures or threats or use of derogatory language directed at or used in the presence of a child that would humiliate, shame or frighten the child or undermine his or her self-respect, dignity or self-worth;
(e) depriving the child of basic needs including food, drink, shelter, sleep, toilet use, clothing or bedding; or
(f) inflicting any bodily harm on children including making children eat or drink against their will.

For the safe administration of medication, the following guidelines should be followed:

ONLY medication prescribed by a physician can be given. The exception to this is diaper creams/ointments for infant and toddler children.

Permitted Medications Include the Following:

  • Prescribed medication in a bottle with a prescription label.
  • An over the counter medication only when accompanied by a doctor’s letter, including proof of date purchased.
  • Holistic medication ONLY when accompanied by a naturopathic doctor’s note.
  • A medication that is needed on a regular basis, e.g. ventolin masks for asthma sufferers, epi-pen etc.

With regards to the use of ventolin masks, epi-pen, puffer, etc., the following is required:

The staff who may be required to administer this type of prescribed medication, must receive training by the member of administration who completes training by the parent/guardian. This includes noting the proper technique and use and the appropriate times to administer this prescribed medication.

The parent/guardian must sign an Individualized Plan for a Child with An Anaphylactic Allergy/Medical Condition for its administration and this must be renewed annually. In addition, when this prescribed medication has been administered, the staff will complete the Record of the Administration of Medication which will serve as a running account to acknowledge that the medication has been administered that day.

  1. Administrative Staff will accept all prescribed medications and must check that medication:
    • is in the original container
    • has the child’s name on it
    • has the name of the medication/drug
    • specifies the dosage on the permission form
    • indicates the date of purchase
    • indicates that medication is current and not expired
    • may include instructions for storage
    • includes instructions for administration
    • may indicate possible side effects

Administrative staff is required to provide the parent/guardian the Record of the Administration of Medication and ensure it is completed accurately and thoroughly. Any discrepancies between the parent/guardian instructions and medication label must be clarified and noted on this form.

  1. All medication is to be stored according to instructions, in a locked container or cupboard or refrigerated and inaccessible to children. All medications will be kept and administered in the health room in the office (excluding diaper creams/ointments). Administrative staff is required to record medications on the medication board in the office and notify teachers that medication has been brought in. For those prescribed medications that may be needed quickly, e.g. puffers for asthma attacks, epi-pens etc., these may be kept in the classroom close at hand but must be inaccessible to children. Children are not permitted to carry their own emergency medication except for elementary level students taking their own asthma inhalers under the supervision of the administration or their teacher.
  2. The staff member administering medication must sign a Record of the Administration of Medication that includes the date, time, amount of medication and their signature. Any notes can also be included on this form such as symptoms noticed when medication administered, etc.
  3. The qualified staff member, the Montessori or RECE in each group, will be designated to administer medication to the child/children in her group. When a qualified staff is not available another regular staff in the room will be designated as the alternate and will administer the medications.
  4. Once the medication is finished or the parent/guardian requests the discontinuation of the medication, return it to the parent to dispense of it offsite. No medication is to be expelled at the school.
  5. Medications that remain on site continuously are to be checked regularly for expiration dates and recorded. Any medications nearing their expiry date or, have expired, are to be returned to parent/guardian immediately. Staff should remove any expired medication from their classrooms and present these to administration
  6. The Record of the Administration of Medication must be kept for at least three years after the child has been withdrawn from the school.
  7. An actual medication measuring apparatus should be used when administering liquid medication
    (1 tsp. = 5 ml).
  8. Any time a child is administered medication staff should monitor that child for any indication of possible side effects, allergic reactions etc. and notify parents/guardians of these.

The only place for a sick child is at home and it is important for us to protect the health of the other children. When a child displays any of the symptoms listed on the Guidelines for Excluding from School that follow, parents/guardians will be called to pick up the child so that s/he can rest at home. Children will be checked for their health upon arrival and the teacher will note in the attendance the child’s condition.

A child with a fever is obviously unwell and should not be sent to school. Should a fever develop in the course of the day the parent/guardian will be called and the child picked up immediately.

GUIDELINES FOR EXCLUDING FROM SCHOOL

Fever and other symptoms in children may suggest the presence of a communicable disease. Children who have the following symptoms should be excluded from school until: (1) a physician has certified that the symptoms are not associated with an infectious agent, or they are no longer a threat to the health of other children at school (please bring doctor’s certificate) or (2) the symptoms have subsided or (3) there is no danger to the child who has been ill to resume attendance.

Fever

  • if present within the previous 24-hour period
  • Temperature is 99.5o F or 38.5o C or higher,
  • especially if accompanied by other symptoms such as vomiting, sore throat, diarrhea, headache and stiff neck, undiagnosed rash
  • Children must be fever-free and without medication for 24 hours before re-entering the school

Respiratory Symptoms

  • Difficult or rapid breathing, or severe coughing
  • High-pitched, croupy, or whooping sound after coughing
  • Child unable to lie comfortably due to continuous cough

Diarrhea

  • Increased number of abnormally loose stools (i.e. liquid or semi-liquid) in the previous twenty-four hours
  • Children must be diarrhea-free and without medication for 24 hours before re-entering the school

Vomiting

  • More than one episode of vomiting in 24 hour period
  • Children must have not vomited and without medication for 24 hours before re-entering the school

Eye-nose Drainage

  • Thick mucus or pus draining from the eye or nose

Sore Throat

  • Sore throat, especially when fever or swollen glands in the neck are present

Itching

  • Persistent itching (or scratching) of body or scalp

Skin Problems

  • Skin rashes, undiagnosed or contagious
  • Skin patches – crusty, yellow, dry or gummy areas of skin

Appearance/Behaviour

  • Child looks or acts differently: is unusually tired, pale, lacking appetite, tearful, irritable, feels general discomfort or just seems unwell

Unusual colour

The symptoms can be found in hepatitis and should be evaluated by a physician:

  • Eyes or skin Yellow (jaundice)
  • Stool Gray or white
  • Urine Dark, tea-colored

Head Lice

  • The presence of any live lice or nits in your child’s hair necessitates that they be sent home immediately for treatment. The child must be free of lice and all nits before returning to school.

The parent/guardian will be called, or a designated emergency person, if their child becomes sick at school. There are no facilities at the school for the care of sick children, so a sick child should be picked up as soon as possible, within the hour when possible. The parent/guardian will be given a Sick or Injured Child Pick Up Notice, so that they will have the necessary information and they will know when the child can return to school. Parents/guardians are required to inform the school if the child is diagnosed with a communicable illness.

Notification of communicable illnesses will be posted outside the classroom when a diagnosis has been received. Also, a notification will be posted at the main entrance.

Purpose of the Policy and Procedures

The Montessori Country School is committed to taking a pro-active position regarding the prevention of anaphylaxis. The purpose of the policy is to provide a process for dealing with anaphylaxis at MCS.

Strategy to Reduce Risk of Exposure

  • Foods with “May Contain” nut warnings will not be served
  • All labels will be read by a staff member prior to serving
  • Staff purchasing foods on behalf of MCS must read food ingredient labels every time they purchase a product
  • Any persons supplying food to the Montessori Country School will be notified of all life-threatening allergies. List of allergies will be revised as necessary
  • All children and staff will wash hands before and after handling food
  • Children/staff/volunteers will be instructed to not share food
  • All surfaces will be cleaned with a cleaning solution (approved by Public Health) prior to and after preparing and serving foods
  • All cleaning supplies, medicines and any other products that may be of danger and/or commonly produce allergic reactions will be stored away
  • Garbage bins will be removed from room and emptied after lunch and/or end of day
  • On the bus during field trips children with anaphylaxis will sit within view of staff member
  • Playground areas will be checked and monitored for insects such as wasps. Custodian and Administration will be notified immediately, and children will not be permitted to play in this area
  • Staff will take both Epi-Pens on all offsite excursions
  • Staff will take their cell phone on all excursions
  • Consent by the child’s physician is required for any child carrying their own Epi-Pen
Communication Plan for the Dissemination of Information
  • List of allergies will be posted in the kitchen, administration, each classroom and, shared spaces operated by the Montessori Country School
  • Parents/Guardians with children with anaphylaxis allergies will provide an individual plan for their child prior to enrolment and updates as they occur.

Individual Plan and Emergency Procedures

Prior to enrolment, the parent/guardian will meet with the Vice Principal, Principal and/or Administrator to provide input for the child’s individual plan and emergency procedures. This plan will include but is not limited to:

  • Description of the child’s allergy
  • Monitoring and avoidance strategies
  • Signs and symptoms of an anaphylactic reaction
  • Child care staff roles and responsibilities
  • Parent/guardian consent for administering allergy medication, sharing information and posting Emergency Plan
  • Emergency contact information
  • Location of EpiPen and back-up EpiPen
  • Physicians note to carry own Epi-Pen (if applicable)

Parents/Guardians are requested to advise the Vice Principal, Principal and/or Administrator if their child develops an allergy, requires medication and/or of any change to the child’s individual plan or treatment. Individual Plans will be reviewed annually and revised as directed by the parent/guardian or physician.

Copies of Individual Plans are in each child’s file, emergency bags, and the Individual Student plan binder. A compiled poster with all children with anaphylactic allergies is posted the kitchen, administration, each classroom and, shared spaces operated by the Montessori Country School

Emergency Protocol

  • One person always stays with the child
  • One person goes for help or calls for help
  • Follow emergency procedures as outlined in child’s individual plan (i.e. Administer epinephrine at first sign of reaction)
  • Call 911. Have the child transported to hospital even if symptoms have subsided. Symptoms may occur hours after exposure to allergen.
  • Administered Epi-pen is to accompany child to hospital.
  • Administered Epi-pen is to be given to hospital employee or child’s parent for disposal.
  • One calm staff must stay with the child until parent or guardian arrives. The child’s back-up epi-pen auto injector should be taken

Training

  • Prior to employment and, each Fall, all staff will be required to review the Individual Plans for all children with an Anaphylactic Allergy enrolled in the Montessori Country School.
  • Volunteers and students will be required to review the Individual Plans for all children with an Anaphylactic Allergy enrolled in the Montessori Country School.
  • Volunteers and Students are not permitted to administer medication
  • Training will include procedures to be followed in the event of a child having an anaphylactic reaction, recognizing the signs and symptoms and administering medication
  • Staff will conduct a check to confirm child(ren) have their required medication with them before each transition (i.e. moving from the class to the gym, leaving the school, etc.)
  • The staff will be required to sign and date that they have reviewed the plan and are in understanding of the emergency procedures.

An enteric outbreak may be occurring when there are three or more related (e.g. in same room, same age group) children or staff with similar signs and symptoms of enteric infection occurring within 48 hours in the facility, OR two or more laboratory-confirmed cases, OR when the number of ill staff/children exceeds what is normal in the school within a short period of time.

The symptoms of enteric illness are:

  • Diarrhea
  • Bloody diarrhea
  • Vomiting
  • Nausea
  • Stomach cramps
  • Fever
  • General irritability
  • Malaise
  • Headache

Early detection of signs & symptoms through observation of children’s health, as well as good record keeping, are crucial to the recognition and control of an outbreak.

Parents are required to call the school if their child is going to be away and they need to give a reason. Teachers submit a list of absent students to the office daily and this is checked against the log of calls. The Admin Assistant will call parents of children absent without notification to find out why they are away. The Vice Principal will track this information in the Staff & Student Illness Log Book. If we suspect an outbreak, we will notify York Region Community and Health Services, Infectious Diseases Control Division immediately.

If an outbreak is declared, MCS will implement the following outbreak control measures.

A. Cohorting

  • Move all children who are symptomatic (with similar symptoms) to a separate area, away from those who are well, until they can be picked up by a parent.
  • Restrict staff members’ activities/ duties to one area/ room if possible.

B. Exclusion

  • If a child is symptomatic, contact the parent/ guardian to take the child home and advise them to consult a physician• Exclude symptomatic individuals (including staff) until symptom-free for 48 hours under most circumstances. In the event that the outbreak does not seem to be coming under control, the exclusion period may be extended. The investigator working the case will provide direction as more information becomes available.

NOTE: Some organisms can continue to be shed by cases even if they are getting better. If there is a laboratory confirmation of a specific organism that is implicated as the cause of the outbreak, this may affect the exclusion period. Cases must be excluded until they are no longer able to pass the infection on to others.

The outbreak investigator will determine the length of the exclusion period.

C. Hygiene

  • Reinforce good personal hygiene practices with children, their parents/ guardians and staff members.
  • Practice good hand washing, especially before eating and after using the toilet.
  • Suggest to parents/ guardians that, during the outbreak period, they may want to use paper towels to dry hands after hand washing, or at least use separate hand towels for everyone at home.
  • Recommend that parents/ guardians use a commercially available high level disinfectant (or a homemade solution of 1 part household bleach to 9 parts water, mixed fresh daily in a spray bottle) for daily or as-needed cleaning of their toilet and bathroom to prevent further spread of the infection. Other items in the home that may be easily contaminated include light switches, door handles, drawer pulls, toothbrushes and taps.

D. Specimen Collection

  • Provide the parents/ guardians with information regarding the outbreak and an outbreak stool kit to collect the stool specimen from the symptomatic child. Directions on how to use the stool kit are available from the IDCD Outbreak Investigator.
  • Obtain permission from parents/ guardians BEFORE collecting stool specimens from the child.
  • Make staff aware that, under certain circumstances, they may be required to submit specimens to help identify or rule out a source of infection. Symptom-free carriers of an enteric pathogenic organism may be excluded from work if the organism they carry is the same as the outbreak strain. They will remain off work until cleared by the Investigator.

E. Notification

  • Advise all staff there is an outbreak.
  • Make staff aware of the signs and symptoms of the outbreak and the need to report any cases or suspect cases to Administration.
  • Educate staff about the procedures for preventing the spread of infection including those mentioned above.

STEP 3
Reinforce infection control measures to contain the outbreak and stop the spread of infection.

A. Handwashing

  • Promote proper handwashing. It is the single most effective method for reducing the spread of enteric outbreaks.

B. Diapering

  • Use disposable gloves for changing diapers and discard the gloves after each change.
  • Use a disposable covering for the change table and discard after each change.
  • Clean and disinfect the change table with a high level disinfectant after each use.
  • Place any soiled laundry into a plastic bag which, in turn, is placed in a covered container.

C. Environmental Cleaning

  • Clean and disinfect toilets (seats, bowls and flush handles) and hand sinks with a high level disinfectant immediately after each episode of diarrhea.
  • Clean and disinfect all toys and play materials daily during the outbreak using a high level disinfectant.
  • Clean and disinfect mouthed toys after each use.
  • Clean and disinfect all beds, tables, chairs, door handles and other regularly touched surfaces and objects daily using a high level disinfectant.

D. Activities

  • Do not allow use of water play tables, play dough and modeling clay during an outbreak.
  • Permit individual sensory play to continue, however, throw out items after play is finished.

E. Food Safety

  • Ensure all food items are obtained from an inspected source.
  • Protect all foods from contamination and adulteration.
  • Change the menu so the same foods served in the days previous to the outbreak will not be served again during the outbreak.
  • Ensure that hot foods are held at 60oC or higher.
  • Ensure that refrigerated foods are held at 4oC or lower.
  • Clean and disinfect all equipment, utensils and work surfaces in the kitchen. In an outbreak, disinfection levels and frequency may be increased.
  • Check dishwashing procedures and equipment to ensure proper cleaning.

The Montessori Country School provides hands on learning opportunities for students and volunteers and encourages a cooperative relationship with families and within the community. We recognize the benefits to both the children and volunteers from participating in a positive and diverse learning environment.

All employees, students and volunteers supervising children in our centres must be a minimum of 18 years of age (as per CCEYA). Only employees will have direct unsupervised access to children; volunteers and students are not to be left alone with children under any circumstances, even for short periods of time. In addition, volunteers and students are not to be counted in the staffing ratios.

All students and volunteers will complete an orientation to review all centre policies, including program statement and implementation policy, child abuse, infection control, anaphylaxis, serious occurrence and supervision policies and procedures prior to providing care or guidance in a classroom and annually thereafter.

Individual needs of the children enrolled in the centre will be reviewed with the students/volunteers prior to supporting in a classroom, including individual plans and the emergency procedures for children with anaphylaxis.

The school’s Administration is responsible for monitoring the behaviour management practices of volunteers or students as set out by the Montessori Country School’s Behaviour Management Policy and Code of Conduct. Employees, volunteers and students are required to report any contraventions to this policy.

Employees are always legally responsible for the children , thus it is imperative that students and volunteers follow the direction and guidance of employees while assisting in the supervision of children. Employees should take the lead in dealing with difficult situations (i.e. guiding challenging behaviours) and sharing of information with clients. Volunteers and students are required to comply with all policies and procedures as set out by the Montessori Country School while supervising children enrolled in our programs, including supervision, health & safety, de-escalation and confidentiality policies and procedures.

Volunteers and students are to identify themselves as such to clients and visitors by wearing a name tag and a written posting introducing themselves and the purpose of their visit near the entrance of the classroom they are volunteering in.

Volunteers and students are to conduct themselves professionally while in the centre and should refer all clients and visitors to a staff member or the centre director for any questions or concerns regarding their child or the centre.

Current vulnerable sector checks are required for all volunteers having direct contact with children (valid within a maximum of 1 month from beginning of volunteer period).

The purpose of this policy is to provide clear direction for staff to follow to deal with emergency situations. The procedures set out steps for staff to follow to support the safety and well-being of everyone involved.
Clear policies and procedures will support all individuals to manage responses and responsibilities during an emergency, resulting in the safest outcomes possible.

Staff will follow the emergency response procedures outlined in the emergency response plan by following these three phases:

  1. Immediate Emergency Response;
  2. Next Steps during an Emergency; and
  3. Recovery.

Staff will ensure that children are kept safe, are accounted for and are supervised at all times during an emergency situation.

Note: all directions given by emergency services personnel will be followed under all circumstances, including directions to evacuate to locations different than those listed above.

For any emergency situations involving a child with an individualized medical or anaphylactic plan in place, the procedures in the child’s individualized plan will be followed.

If any emergency situations result in a serious occurrence, the serious occurrence policy and procedures will also be followed and the Principal will be responsible for ensuring all reporting procedures have been implemented.

To make the process of applying sunscreen and bug repellants more efficient and safer for all staff and students, we have the following procedure in place at MCS. We hope that this will be an added convenience for MCS families as well.

POLICY

Part 1: At Home

Parents/Guardians are expected to apply sunscreen in the morning at home. This application will last through the recess period. Bug repellent can also be applied in the morning at home. All children should have a hat at school to wear at recess or during outdoor activities. We ask that parents/guardians ensure their child has a hat at school every day.

Part 2: At School

All programs (classrooms and extended programs) will be supplied with a bottle of sunscreen and bug repellent by the school. The products the school will be using are natural and environmentally friendly (for product information, please enquire at the office). Students will be given lotion and repellent should they be going outside again in the afternoon. Should a parent/guardian forget to apply lotion or repellent in the morning they are expected to let the school know so that the teacher can make sure the child is protected.

Why do we have this system in place at MCS?

  • Too difficult to apply lotion & repellent to classes of up to 24 students in class
  • Teachers find it difficult to manage the many bottles of lotions
  • Consistency – it is difficult to ensure that all parents/guardians bring safe brands and formats of sunscreen & repellent (i.e. some spray repellents are an inhalant risk for asthmatic and allergic children)
  • Efficacy – sunscreen that is applied in the morning and has a chance to absorb properly into the skin is more effective than sunscreen applied just prior to going outside

More reminders for outdoor sun safety:

  • Full running shoes are preferable to sandals on the playground. The sand, gravel and woodchips present in the playgrounds can get into sandals easily and cause injury or discomfort.
  • All children should have sunhats at school every day. While baseball caps provide head and eye protection, they do not protect the ears or the back of the neck. We recommend a full brimmed hat or bucket style hat.
  • Toddler Parents: Children should be wearing t-shirts that cover their shoulders. Tank tops, sleeveless tops and halter tops are not appropriate school wear.

Outdoor play and physical activity are essential to children’s health and development.

The purpose of this policy is to ensure that protocol is in place in to assist children in their development of healthy sun safe habits.

The following standard sun safety recommendations are supported by Health Canada, Canadian Cancer Society and York Region Public Health.

Staff at MCS will implement the following Sun Safety Guidelines to protect themselves and the children while outdoors.

1. Staff are required to role model sun safe behaviours

2. All heat warnings put out by York Region Public Health will be adhered to.

3. Modified times for outdoor recess will be implemented as necessary to accommodate for higher temperatures.

4. Staff will ensure that children have access to their water bottles while outdoors.

5. Parents/Guardians are asked to provide the following items for their children:

  • All children should have sunhats at school every day. While baseball caps provide head and eye protection, they do not protect the ears or the back of the neck. We recommend a full brimmed hat or bucket style hat.
  • Shatter resistant UVA/UVB (sunglasses labelled 100% UV protection or UV400), close fitting or wraparound sunglasses will provide protection from direct and reflected UVR.
  • Reusable, shatter resistant water bottle
  1. Staff will follow the guidelines for the use of sunscreen and bug repellent as outlined in the ‘Sunscreen and Bug Repellent Policy’. Parents/Guardians are expected to apply sunscreen in the morning at home; if they forget to apply, they will need to let the school know so that the teacher can make sure the child is protected.
  2. Children should be wearing t-shirts that cover their shoulders. Tank tops, sleeveless tops and halter tops are not appropriate school wear. Please refer to the Student Dress Code in your Parent Handbook. Teachers will be reminding parents of the dress code if they see a student dressed inappropriately.

It will not be the obligation of staff to check the sunglasses worn by children for compliance with the requirements of UV protection. By sending children into the school with sunglasses, parents/guardians are consenting to the risk factors associated with the wearing of sunglasses during physical activity and the repercussions of not providing sun safe protection for their children.

Related Pages

  • We were so impressed when we visited MCS, we knew our child needed to be part of it. The positive calm environment with individual attention to our daughters needs definitely drew us. The 12 month programming and flexible pick up times are essential for our family.

    M.G. Parent