School Handbook

Our Mission: Holistic Nurturing of Children

 

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The Blawenburg Village Preschool is grounded in the Christian faith and practices of the Blawenburg Reformed Church. Open to families of all faiths, the preschool seeks to nurture the social, developmental, emotional, and spiritual lives of children.

Nurturing the Social: We seek to create a covenantal community of trust and cooperation. This is fostered as children are guided in their social interactions with peers and teachers, and is modeled by the relationships between parents and staff of the school. All learn together to respect the cultures and abilities of all participants through multicultural experiences of stories, games, traditions and music. From time to time children and families are offered opportunity to assist others in need.

Nurturing the Developmental: We provide qualified teachers and staff who work diligently to meet each child’s individual developmental needs. Teachers share with children the wonder and beauty of God’s creation. Children are offered a variety of motivating and hands-on experiences which aid in the development of motor, musical, and artistic skills. At appropriate levels teachers lay a foundation for the development of skills in reading, writing, arithmetic, health, social studies and science.

Nurturing the Emotional: We seek to provide a warm, accepting and positive atmosphere. Children are led to recognize their own special characteristics and abilities. Self-esteem, self-control, and healthy independence are fostered. Children are also helped to handle and verbalize emotions in appropriate ways while preserving the child’s ability to feel and express the full range of God-given emotions.

Nurturing the Spiritual: We affirm that all children bear the image of God their Creator. As a Christian preschool we seek to be attentive to the spiritual development of children. This takes place through songs, stories, celebrations and prayers. Together we seek to form a covenant distinguished by trust, mutual respect and sharing.

Oversight and Management of the Preschool

Blawenburg Reformed Church has operated The Blawenburg Village Preschool since its establishment in April 1999. The BRC Consistory (the church’s governing body) exercises oversight and has full responsibility for the preschool’s operations, finances, and facilities.

The Blawenburg Reformed Church

The Blawenburg Reformed Church is a covenant community of God’s people united in Christ through the Holy Spirit. We commit our gifts to worship, hospitality, life-long learning, serving those in need, and proclaiming the good news of salvation in Jesus Christ. Visitors and newcomers are always welcome!

Curriculum

The Creative Curriculum for Preschool, Fourth Edition, (Teaching Strategies, Inc. 2002), has been adopted by BVS as its foundation for classroom organization and instructional practice.

The Creative Curriculum For Preschool is a curriculum of the environment. Within each classroom, teachers and children together create their unique curriculum environment for learning. Children learn best through their play, and The Creative Curriculum helps us design rich environments in which children’s natural curiosity leads into discovery, practice, exploration, role play and information gathering.

Students will be exposed to many activities through learning centers, classroom routines, teacher-directed projects, and changing classroom themes. This will provide our students with multi-layered learning experiences that help build social and emotional skills, physical skills, cognitive skills, and language skills. This rich learning environment allows for differences in individual learning styles and the natural, varied pace of development from child to child.

Handwriting Without Tearsis the handwriting curriculum used at BVS. Each student in the Berry Patch and Blossoms classes will have a handwriting notebook that they will use throughout the school year. The Buds classes will also begin using this curriculum which for their age begins with songs and manipulatives. The Handwriting Without Tears Curriculum is also being used in Montgomery Township schools so students will become familiar with the program prior to entering kindergarten.

Young Children and Worship is the program that is used for Bible Story. Each Class at BVS will participate in Bible Story which will be held in the children’s worship area at the far end of the lower level in Cook Hall. Sitting on the carpet with their teachers and a specially trained Bible Story teacher, children enjoy an experience of being with, listening to and talking with God together during Bible Story time.

School Schedules

School Hours: BVS is open Monday through Friday, 8:00am-3:00pm.

Morning Classes: 9:00-12:00 (2012-2013)

Lunch Program: 12:00-1:00 (2012-2013)

Afternoon Enrichment Program: 1:00pm-3:00pm (A 30-minute Rest Time is provided for BVS children in a morning program who will be extending their day. This will occur from 1:00pm-1:30pm)

Be On Time! It is hard to be the last one to be picked up so please make every effort to arrive on time for our child. If you are unavoidably delayed, please phone the school office to let us know your situation so we can reassure your child. If arrangements must be made to pick up your child earlier than their designated pick-up time, please speak with your child’s teacher in advance.

School Calendar:

Each family will receive a school calendar for the year. If you need a copy or have questions please contact the office. If there are any changes to the calendar you will be notified in advance.

Snow Days and Inclement Weather: In the event that Montgomery Township Schools are closed due to inclement weather, BVS will be closed as well. In the event of a delayed opening, we will cancel our morning classes but have afternoon classes as usual. You can obtain information about school closings by calling the Montgomery Message Line, (609) 466-7610 or by checking their website.

Policies and Procedures Regarding Children

Arrival and Dismissal: Please arrive and depart on time, and drive slowly and cautiously in the parking lot. Children should be dropped off and picked up in their classrooms. Please sign your child into class each day using the clipboard at the entrance to his/her classroom. When picking up your child, please wait for them outside the classroom door as the teacher will release the children directly to you in an orderly manner. Please remember to sign them out. For your child’s protection, he/she will be released only to those individuals listed on his/her registration form. Teachers are required to ask for identification (driver’s license) from anyone they have not met. Please call the office and let us know if there will be a change in who is picking up your child, as such adjustments can only be made in writing or by a call from the custodial parent. No child will be released without parental authorization. Please be sure anyone dropping off or picking up your child is aware of the policies and procedures.

Discipline Policy: As a school grounded in the Christian faith, our goal is to foster the development of individuals within a community of trust, cooperation, mutual respect and sharing. We seek to model this in staff relations with one another, with the children and with parents. Our discipline philosophy and practice flows from this beginning point.

BVS provides a warm, accepting and positive atmosphere in which self-esteem, self-control and healthy independence are fostered. Children are also helped to handle and verbalize emotions in appropriate ways while preserving the child’s ability to feel and express the full range of God-given emotions.

Our exceptionally low teacher-child ratios allow staff to carefully guide the children’s behavioral choices and social interactions with peers and teachers. Every effort will be made to assist children to develop verbal problem-solving skills, gain empathy for their peers and develop the self-control needed for being part of a group that loves and cares for one another. Children develop self-control if we…

Act as we expect them to act.

Set reasonable and positive expectations.

Respect their feelings.

Trust them to succeed.

Offer them good choices.

Calmly talk about problems.

Time Out: There are occasional times when a child may need to be removed from a situation to calm down and gain some time and space to reflect and to become redirected. The purpose is not punishment. If for any reason a child is briefly removed from a group activity, it will be with a staff member who clearly explains the reason and engages the child in discussion regarding the inappropriate behavior and alternatives the child can use in the future. The goal is to help the child regain self-control and return to the group as soon as he/she is ready.

Assessments, Progress Reports and Parent Teacher Conferences: Teachers are always available to discuss your special concerns. They have limited time for discussion during drop off and pick up, but are happy to return phone calls or set up conferences as needed at a mutually convenient time.

The Creative Curriculum provides an extensive assessment instrument which the teachers use to track each child’s progress. A baseline assessment is done in September/October. Mid-year and end-of year assessments are recorded in January and May. This information is used for the formal progress report which you will receive in February and May. Formal conferences will be available during the year, please watch for information from your child’s teacher.

Health Policies: Our objective is to maintain a safe and healthy school environment for children and staff. Each enrolled child must have had a health examination performed by a licensed physician within one year prior to admission. The school maintains on file a record of this health exam documented by the physician, as well as an up-to-date immunization record appropriate to the child’s age.

Following are our policies about attendance in the case of certain specific illnesses or diseases. However, there are always situations that will require a parent’s discretion. We ask for your sensitivity to others’ health concerns as you decide whether to send your child to school with lingering or developing symptoms of illness. If your child becomes ill at school we will call you and expect that you will arrange to have your child picked up within 30 minutes. Students will be removed from the classroom and given a quiet supervised place to rest while they wait to be picked up.

As per state regulations, any child exhibiting one or more of the following symptoms must be removed from their class:

  • Severe pain or discomfort
  • Acute vomiting
  • Sore throat or severe coughing
  • Red eyes with discharge
  • Skin rashes, excluding diaper rash lasting more than 1 day
  • Weeping or bleeding skin lesions
  • Visibly enlarged lymph nodes
  • Blood in urine or stool
  • Acute diarrhea
  • Elevated temperature of 101.5 or over
  • Yellow eyes or jaundiced skin
  • Infected skin patches
  • Swollen joints
  • Stiff neck

Medications will not be administered except under the circumstance of immediate emergency. If a child has a chronic health condition requiring the administration of prescription or non-prescription medication or health care procedures on a long-term basis, parents must speak with the director.

To return to school, a child must be symptom-free for 24 hours. That means in the case of a fever the child must be fever free without fever-reducing medication. In the case of a stomach illness the child may not return until they have gone 24 hours without vomiting or diarrhea. If a child is receiving a course of antibiotics, please wait until the first 24-hour period of medication is complete before returning to school.

Under no circumstances will the school admit any child who has any illness or disease that a physician has determined to require confinement to home or under a physician’s immediate care; or admittance to a hospital for medical care and treatment.

The school will not permit a child or staff member with one of the following communicable diseases to be admitted to the school until a note from a licensed physician states that they have been diagnosed and present no risk to self or others.

Respiratory Illnesses

  • Chicken Pox
  • German Measles
  • Hemophilus Influenzae
  • Measles
  • Meningococcus
  • Mumps
  • Strep Throat
  • Tuberculosis
  • Whooping Cough

Gastro-Intestinal Illnesses

  • Giardia Lamblia
  • Hepatitis A
  • Salmonella
  • Shigella

Contact Illnesses

  • Impetigo
  • Lice
  • Scabies

In the case of any injury at school, staff will prepare a written accident report. Parents will be informed at dismissal, and are required to sign and date the accident report. In the event of a serious injury or severe illness, the school will make every effort to contact a parent. Of primary concern will be proper and timely treatment of the child. Staff members who are trained in Infant and Child CPR and First Aid will be present to assist.

Daily Life In School

Absence: Please call or email and let us know why your child is absent. It is important for us to know the particulars of each child’s illness. If you will be away from school for a period of time, such as for vacation or family reasons please give your child’s teacher a note or write the information on the sign-in sheet.

Backpacks: Each child needs to have a backpack large enough for carrying their lunchbox, school notices, projects, etc. Don’t forget to check the backpack contents daily as this is our primary means of communication!!

Birthdays: At BVS we celebrate each child’s birthday in class with a special birthday crown and simple classroom ceremonies. If you would like to provide a special snack for the day you may do so, but we ask that it be very simple. Reminder – We are a peanut free school. Snacks such as mini muffins, mini cupcakes, munchkins, brownies, or cookies are always favorites. You can provide birthday napkins but please no other decorations or treats for the children. Save these things for your family party.

Clothing: Our school dress code requires that children are able to play without worrying about getting dirty or falling. Sneakers must be worn on the playground; no sandals or crocs will be permitted, as they fill with woodchips and sand, and are unsafe for climbing. We also ask that the children are able to remove their own clothing, so they can use the bathroom independently. Pants that pull up and down easily without difficult buttons, snaps, buckles, or suspenders are best. We will go outside every day, weather permitting. Please be sure your child is dressed appropriately for the weather and that all outerwear is labeled with your child’s name. All students will need a complete change of LABELED clothes, including socks and two sets of underwear. Please place these items in a ziplock bag clearly labeled with your child’s name, and give the bag to your child’s teacher. If we send home soiled clothing please return it promptly so we always have extras on hand. For students not yet using the toilet, please supply their needed diapers or pull-ups and wipes. The teachers will show you where these items will be stored.

Communication, Concerns and Questions: It is important that we communicate with you each day when you bring your child into the classroom and again when you sign out at the end of the day. If anything of significance happens during your child’s day, we will let you know. Also, if there is anything of significance in the life of your child or family, please let us know, as this will help us understand your child’s behavior. If you have questions, comments or concerns please feel free to discuss those with your child’s teacher or the Director. Our goal is for an environment with open communication so your child’s needs are always appropriately addressed.

Field Trips: The whole school takes part in a fall field trip to a local farm in October. Parents accompany children and meet their teachers at the farm for a tour and a variety of activities. Each class also plans a trip appropriate to their age group and particular interests. Specific information regarding field trips will be provided to you as each trip arises.

Lunch: All students are invited to join us for lunch. Parents provide lunch for their children. This is a wonderful opportunity for your child to have some social time with their friends while developing and practicing self-help skills at the lunch table. Students are taught how to manage their lunch boxes, open containers, help one another and use manners while socializing and enjoying their food. What to send for lunch:

  • NO PEANUTBUTTER Due to severe allergies our campus is peanut free.
  • Pack nutritious food, including a drink
  • Please include all utensils and a frozen cold pack as refrigeration is not available
  • There will be a microwave available so items can be heated if in a microwave safe container, and require less than one and a half minutes to heat.
  • For children under four, please be sure to cut all food into small, easily manageable chunks or slices

Prayers: Children will be taught a simple prayer to offer thanks to God before enjoying their food at snack and lunchtime.

  • Sprouts: God is great, God is good, Thank you God, for this food.
  • Buds: Thank you for the world so sweet, Thank you for the food we eat, Thank you for the birds that sing, Thank you, God, for everything.
  • Blossoms: God, we thank You for this food, for rest and home and all things good: For wind and rain and sun above, But most of all for those we love.

Snack: The school provides a simple mid-morning/mid-afternoon snack of water and fruit, crackers, pretzels or dry cereal. Occasionally a special snack may be served in conjunction with a cooking project or classroom celebration. Staff will carefully check each child’s health record for food allergies before serving something new.

Toilet Training/Bathroom Procedures: Our goal for all children at BVS is their independence and self-control in using the toilet by themselves. Depending on where they are in this developmental process, teachers will work on training and will supervise carefully to assure that they reach this goal during their years at BVS. At no time will a child be forced or required to use the toilet. Children will never be punished or ridiculed for toileting accidents, and clean up will be done by teachers in a quiet, matter-of-fact manner that seeks to preserve the child’s dignity. All children will be supervised when using the bathrooms, while allowing for appropriate privacy. Teachers will ensure that children wash their hands with soap and water before leaving the bathroom.

Toys:Children may not bring toys from home. Each class will develop their own show and tell practices which may provide a time for sharing special things from home.

Parent Involvement

If you haven’t received a Parent Volunteer Form and are interested in volunteering please inquire in the office. Below are some ways to get involved, however additional opportunities will also be provided. Notices will be sent as volunteers are needed.

  • School Library Assist with the shelving of our library books.
  • Allergies This committee will assist with providing a safe environment for all students at all school events.
  • Gardening If you have a green thumb we can use your help.
  • Fundraising Plan and execute fundraising events for the year.
  • School Spirit Assist with the design of a new school logo and the selling of spirit wear.
  • Mission/Outreach Organize and implement outreach programs throughout the year.
  • Homeroom Parent Two for each class, these parents work closely with teachers on special parties and projects that take place throughout the year.
  • Scholastic Books Coordinate the monthly book orders.
  • School Photos Assist with the students on photo day. October and April
  • Book Fair This committee will assist the chairperson with coordinating this event.
  • Family Fun Nights Help with the many aspects of this FUN night.

 

Blawenburg Village School
424 Route 518
Blawenburg, NJ 08504
Tel: (609) 466-6600

School Hours:
Monday - Friday: 8:00 am - 3:00 pm
Morning Classes: 9:00 am - 12:00 pm
Lunch Program: 12:00 pm - 1:00 pm

Our Mission

The Blawenburg Village PreSchool (BVS) is rooted in the Christian faith and practice of the Blawenburg Reformed Church. Open to all faiths, the preschool seeks to nurture the social, developmental, emotional and spiritual lives of children. Read More

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© 2017 Blawenburg Village School 424 Route 518 Blawenburg, NJ 08504 | (609) 466-6600