PCC: JUNE 2016 MEETING NOTES

Notes from the fifth Parent Collaboration Committee (PCC), which was held at Fremont Center on June 15th, 2016.

Reading, Math, Literacy, and Kindergarten Readiness

Our goal is for each graduate of our preschool program to feel ready to tackle elementary school. While “conventional” preschool programs may focus on drilling letters or number recognition, we take an emergent, child-led approach. We provide children with relevant, tangible, experience-based learning opportunities that emerge from their interests. Instead of a teacher selecting a topic that children will investigate, they’re trained to frame children’s interests with relevant, applicable project work; and research alongside children. Each of our preschool classrooms hosts dedicated spaces for independent reading, writing, and math work. Opportunities for reading, math, and literacy are also integrated into bigger, long-term projects in the classroom.

We’ve worked with several preschool and kindergarten teachers to develop a kindergarten readiness checklist; and you’ll receive information on how your child is progressing at parent-teacher conferences every six months. Most children hit each milestone in the end of their first year of preschool.

Are ChildRoots graduates ready for kindergarten? Absolutely. Our preschool nurtures capable, confident children that are ready to investigate and lead.

Lead, Asbestos, and Radon

We care deeply about the health and safety of your children and our teachers, and we’re confident that each of our buildings meets or exceeds health and safety standards.

Each of our locations has been re-tested for lead. The findings from these latest tests indicates that there are no concerning levels of lead found in our drinking water at any of our locations. You can find the analysis report from Professional Laboratory Services on our parent resource page on our website.

Radon can be present anywhere – it’s potentially present in the rock beneath our schools. A radon issue depends upon the quality of our foundation – specifically the porosity of the concrete and/or cracking in the foundation. For our buildings in the vicinity of the Alameda Ridge where radon is a growing concern, we have tested and or have the radon abated.

Asbestos could be present in our older buildings walls, old flooring tiles, or insulation, but it’s highly unlikely as all of our schools have been extensively remodeled. We have not tested for it but we are always mindful that it could be present and are careful not to disturb any areas in question.

Short Goodbyes, Long Hellos

We recommend short, predictable drop-off routines in the morning. This helps children know what to expect, and helps to alleviate some of the anxiety around drop-off. Children know that you’re leaving. Anxiety stems from them being unsure of when, especially when you come in for multiple “last” hugs. Parents -- please radiate that you’re comfortable and happy to send your child to school. Make an agreement with your child (and/or work with your teachers) to create a short, predictable drop-off plan that you adhere to each morning. Pick-up provides a great opportunity to spend time in the classroom, watch your child play, and check in with teachers.

We ask that children arrive at school by 9:30. If you’re running late, please call to let us know. From 7:00 - 9:00, teachers are available to support drop-offs. After this time, our day is starting; and teachers will be less available to help you say goodbyes as we start snack, lead a morning circle, or offer morning bottles.

Sunscreen Application

Sign-up for the sunscreen co-op is still available on the parent resource portion of the ChildRoots website. Please ensure that your child comes to school in the morning with sunscreen applied. Teachers only re-apply to “hot spots” (exposed arms, shoulders, and faces) in the afternoon, before our second trip outside. Teachers can apply co-op sunscreen lotion to faces, but feel free to bring in a labeled facestick if you’d prefer us to use that.

Communication Updates

We’re in the process of hiring a full-time Communications Coordinator, which will help to simplify the way we convey information to families. This person will also help us get a better sense of how parents would like to be updated on ChildRoots happenings.