Welcome to Warm Fuzzies Preschool!
♥ Our Business
My name is Chelsea Conger. I am the owner (along with my husband Dave) and teacher of Warm Fuzzies Preschool. In 2013 we built the little red schoolhouse to be the home of Warm Fuzzies, in Denver, Colorado. In 2016 we decided it was time to move home and so we built another little red schoolhouse in Dexter, Michigan. We are licensed through the State of Michigan and Dexter Township. Our license number is DG810382406. In order to become licensed, we had to meet health and safety standards established by the State of Michigan. My most recent Report of Inspection is available for your review upon request. The state standards require monthly fire and storm drills to be practiced with the children, and our schoolhouse and my home will be inspected regularly to ensure a safe environment for your child. I am required to attend sessions each year to help me improve my skills, which include First Aid, CPR and Universal Precaution trainings by a Public Health Association. I continue to attend educator workshops to gain new insights and ideas about teaching young children.
Music will be played every day and will be age appropriate. We love to sing, dance, and play musical instruments. Television is not part of our program though, with advanced permission, I may provide a show/movie that relates to our area of study. This will not occur without all parental approval and the video will not exceed 2 hours.
Being outside is extremely important! The benefits of spending time in nature are incredible for everyone, especially children. We go outside every day, so it is important to dress your child in play clothes and play shoes that you are not concerned about getting dirty. Raincoats, sunhats, waterproof boots, gardening gloves, sunglasses, and durable clothing are all encouraged to come with your child each day or can be left at school for appropriate use. In the winter, please be sure to send appropriate outerwear each day. This includes snow pants, hats, coats, mittens, and boots. We will try to get out as much as the winter weather permits (when temperatures reach 20 degrees or more). We go outside when it is sunny, snowy, rainy, foggy, muddy, hot and cold! When outdoors we play with our chickens, guineas, Calbert the sheep, our dog (Winnie), and our 2 alpacas, Fletcher and Hopscotch. I have read several books about the advantages and importance of helping children connect with nature. Here are a few of my favorites in case you are interested:
· How to Raise a Wild Child: The Art and Science of Falling in Love with Nature by Scott D. Sampson
· I Love Dirt!: 52 Activities to Help You and Your Kids Discover the Wonders of Nature by Jennifer Ward, Susie Ghahremani
· Boys Should Be Boys: 7 Secrets to Raising Healthy Sons by Meg Meeker
♥ Children Served
Warm Fuzzies Preschool provides care for children ages ranging from 2 to 5 years, with no more than 4 children under 30 months of age. Before enrolling a child we meet with the family and the child to determine if Warm Fuzzies Preschool is the right fit. Every child is unique and we will determine readiness and appropriateness on an individual basis. Warm Fuzzies Preschool makes every effort to provide reasonable accommodations for children with special needs.
All necessary forms must be completed and submitted before the acceptance of any child. Here is a list of the required forms:
· Child In Care Form (State Form)
· Child Information Card (State Form)
· About Your Child
· First Day Checklist
· Authorization for Field Trips, Transportation, Media Use and Photography
· Medical History
· General Health Appraisal Form (signed by your pediatrician)
· Immunization Records (signed by your pediatrician)
· Child Pick-Up Authorization
· Emergency Information
· Emergency Transportation
· Registration Form
· Sunscreen Permission Form
Forms must be updated at least each school year and when changes to information on the forms occur.
Warm Fuzzies Preschool provides breakfast, lunch, and two snacks for children.
· Breakfast around 8:45am
· Morning Snack around 10:00 am
· Lunch at 11:30am
· Afternoon Snack around 2:30 pm
The menu for the day will be written on the whiteboard beside the front door and a sample menu is available on the home page of this website. I believe that snack times should be enjoyable for children. They should be a time to relax and socialize with friends, peers, and adults; therefore, children are always offered food but are not forced to eat. Children who choose not to eat at snack time will not be given the opportunity to eat snack outside of that time. We serve nutritious and balanced snacks each day according to the Federal Nutrition Guidelines. I attempt to provide organic foods when possible. We do try new and different foods in order to develop new tastes.
We prepare healthy, yummy breakfasts and lunches for children. Your child will be encouraged to try everything that he/she is offered, however, we do not “force” any foods on a child. Food is served on a schedule. If your child cannot be here for breakfast, lunch or snack, please remember to feed him/her before you arrive.
* Any food brought from home must be labeled with the child’s name. Warm Fuzzies Preschool can provide reasonable accommodations for dietary restrictions and food allergies. Please speak with Chelsea or Dave to discuss this further. Warm Fuzzies Preschool is happy to support and assist however possible children transitioning from breast to bottle or from bottle to cup. Please communicate with us about how we can help with these transitions for you and your child.
♥ Rest Time
Rest is important for young children. Children will rest in the afternoon after lunch each day. Younger children (2-3yrs) will sleep on cots upstairs and will have a fresh clean sheet (provided by WFP) and the children will bring a pillow, blanket and stuffed animal from home. Lights will be dimmed and soft music or white noise will be played. Children may sleep during these times or quietly read books. Older children who require less rest time (4 and 5 year olds) will rest downstairs quietly for a shorter period of time and then work with Chelsea on higher level activities following their quiet time (45min-1 hour). The younger students will be given adequate rest time from 12pm-2:30pm.
Warm Fuzzies Preschool operates whenever possible under the Love and Logic principles of providing logical consequences for both acceptable and unacceptable behavior. We model desired behavior in the classroom and expect the support of parents at home when negative behavior becomes habitual. We will be a support in your ongoing goal to teach your child self-control, respect for herself/himself and others, and responsibility for her/his actions. We will do this by setting limits that are fair, enforcing them firmly and lovingly, redirecting, and providing a quiet time away from others when appropriate. This quiet time provides an opportunity for an out-of-control child to calm down and regain control; for more mature children, a “break” can also provide a chance for introspection. You will be kept informed as to your child’s behavior via verbal or written report. Continued undesirable behavior may result, as a last resort, in parents being called for early pick-up of child and/or a request for withdrawal. Unkind words or acts of violence will not be tolerated. Please see the Curriculum page for more on behavior.
♥ Hours and Days of Operation
Warm Fuzzies Preschool follows the Dexter Community Schools calendar with the exception of planning/professional days, in which Warm Fuzzies will be in session. We will also be open for full days even when Dexter is only having half days. There will also be summer camps offered for those who would like to participate.
School hours are as follows:
*See the Schedule and Tuition page for more information.
*In the event of an emergency or if Chelsea or Dave should need to go out during the day our parents, Maggie Conger, Dale Conger, or Judy Conger (all former educators with over 30 years of experience each) will take over the class with Dave or Chelsea. If this happens you will be notified at pick up. If we know ahead of time that a substitute will be used during any part of the day, you will be notified in advance.
Payment is due at drop off (8am) on your child’s first day of attendance each week (usually Monday, unless your child does not attend school on Monday). You may also choose to prepay for the entire month if that is easier for you. You are paying for a contracted spot for your child, so payment is due whether your child is in attendance or not. This includes absences and vacations. Warm Fuzzies Preschool follows the Dexter Community Schools calendar (with the exception of DCS closures for planning/professional days and assessment days) and tuition remains the same regardless of holidays. That means if Warm Fuzzies Preschool is closed for 3 days for Thanksgiving break, and your children normally attends school on those days, then you will pay for the 3 days to keep your child’s place at school. Parents are responsible for paying tuition before vacation days and/or holidays.
* We do offer families one unpaid week during each school year. The week may not be split up. It must be used over one calendar week.
If payment has not been received by 4pm on your child’s first day of attendance for the week you will be charged a $10 late fee and your child will be unable to attend Warm Fuzzies Preschool until payment is received in full and your child may be at risk of losing his/her place. If your child will not be in attendance on your regular tuition due date, payment is expected the day before. I will not be able to make any exceptions to this policy. If a parent is habitually late in paying for preschool, the family may be asked to find another place for their child.
♥ Tuition Fees are as follows:
· Full Day with breakfast, lunch, and two snacks (8am-4pm) $70/day
· Sibling discounted rate (when enrolling more than one child and when both children are over 2yrs) $65/day
We may have enrichment programs or opportunities to go on field trips that do require payment for participation. Parents will be notified in advance and consent will be necessary before the field trip or outside enrichment takes place.
♥ Payment Methods
Personal checks, Venmo, Paypal, Chase Quickpay, and cash are acceptable methods of payment. Please make checks payable to Warm Fuzzies Preschool.
♥ Returned Payments
Returned checks will be treated as late tuition and all late fees shall apply. In addition to late fees you will also be required to pay an NSF charge of $35.00. You will also be responsible for any charges that Chelsea Conger may incur from her own financial institution because of your returned payment. All of your future payments will then be required to be in cash.
♥ Open Door Policy
I maintain an open door policy to families with children enrolled at Warm Fuzzies Preschool. Parents are welcome to visit anytime during business hours and I invite all parents to volunteer in the classroom (with advanced notice). Please understand that I may not be available to give you my undivided attention as I am interacting with the children. Also, visitors tend to make the children behave in an excited manner that does not usually occur when we are alone with them. Your child may become upset when your visit is over and you leave without them. Please keep this in mind when planning your visit. It is also very important that all visitors sign in and out at the front door and wash their hands upon arrival.
♥ Arrival Details
Children are expected to arrive between 8-8:15am each morning. We understand that different schedules might effect this time frame, but we at the very latest would like to have all children at school before breakfast begins. Family Style Breakfast begins at 8:45am. It is important for your child and all of the other children at Warm Fuzzies to be at school on time and be ready for the day before breakfast begins. Children will be asked to wash their hands before they begin playing each day. All children, staff, and visitors must wash hands upon arrival. After hand washing children may spend this time showing their parents something inside the classroom, filling up their water bottles, reading a story alone, with a friend or with their parent in the book corner, chatting with friends, and organizing their things so they are ready for the day. This is a perfect time to apply sunscreen to your child each morning and to make sure your child has everything he/she needs for the day. It is also a good time to check your child’s cubby or lost and found for any belongings that need to go home, and sign your child in. It is very important that you sign your child in and out every day! Any persons taking your place for drop-off/pick-up times should be listed on the Child Pick up Authorization Form. If they are not listed, a written authorization from you is required. I will not release your child without your approval for both the protection of your child and myself.
♥ Departure Details
When weather allows, pick-up will occur outdoors. When the weather is not conducive to outdoor transitions, please pick-up your child inside. Occasionally, you may wish to send someone other than yourself to drop off or pick up your child. Be sure to notify any persons doing so of the drop-off/pick-up procedure. Always notify me in writing should there be someone other than you dropping off or picking up for the day.
In the event that a parent or an authorized adult arrives to pick up a child and I have a reasonable suspicion that the adult is under the influence of drugs or alcohol I am by law required to call the police.
♥ Transitions and Late Pick-Up
Transitions can be difficult for anyone, especially young children. In my experience, transitions are made easier by consistency (dropping off and picking up on time) and by quick and loving goodbyes. Please do not leave without telling your child goodbye. Young children’s separation anxiety is often closely tied to fears of abandonment. It is important that they know that you will be returning for them at a designated time. By saying goodbye to your child, you are reassuring him or her that you will return and that you are not abandoning them. It is never suggested to “sneak out” – this will only add to your child’s anxiety.
Warm Fuzzies Preschool is open from 8am to 4pm. Please drop off and pick up your child on time so that they do not miss learning opportunities and so I can prepare for the next class and/or prepare dinner for my family. I understand occasional lateness may occur due to unavoidable weather and/or an emergency but please do your best to respect school hours.
The following fee assessment will be enforced for late pick ups: $1.00 for each minute you are late and will be recorded on the sign in/sign out sheet. Payment for this time is due with your weekly tuition payment at the beginning of the following week. Each family is allotted 2 free emergency late pick-ups. After these 2 free emergency late pick-ups have been used, the $1 per minute fee will take effect.
If a parent is habitually late, I will assume that my program hours do not meet your family’s needs and may suggest a different placement for your child.
If emergency situations arise and your child must remain at Warm Fuzzies Preschool, he/she will be treated the same as my own child with regard to activities and food. If your child is here during a mealtime, food will be provided. If all emergency contacts have been notified, I have not heard from you, and your child remains at the school after two hours, police and child protective services may be notified.
I have the children’s safety and well-being in mind at all times. When we are indoors we will keep all outside doors locked. I am also extremely vigilant about who picks up a child. Unless I have written documentation from you and the person can provide proper, photo identification I will not release a child to anyone other than the child’s parents.
♥ Weather Closings
Warm Fuzzies Preschool will remain open even when the Dexter Community Schools close (UNLESS THE CONDITIONS ARE TOO DANGEROUS FOR US TO REMAIN OPEN-IN WHICH CASE YOU WILL BE NOTIFIED).
♥ Absences and Vacations
I encourage you to contact me whenever your child is not going to be attending. This helps me to plan my day. Warm Fuzzies Preschool does not offer any rate reductions due to vacation, illness, or other absences. The session your child is scheduled for is reserved for him/her and in turn, you contract to pay for these days regardless if your child attends or not.
We are allotted three sick days per school year that we will only use if Dave and I are all sick and we are concerned about infecting children in school. If we do require the use of a sick day, Warm Fuzzies Preschool will be closed, however tuition charges still apply. If at all possible we will avoid having to close for the day.
♥ Illness and Sick Care
The health and well being of all the children at Warm Fuzzies Preschool is of the utmost importance to me. It is for the protection of the children that I must insist on a strict adherence to my Health Policy. Please read it carefully. If you have any questions or doubts, regarding the statements it contains please discuss them with me now. Do not wait until your child is sick to think about what would be best for all concerned. At that point you may be making the decisions based on emotion instead of logic. Even with all of our precautions, children do get sick. Due to my concern for all of the children enrolled, there are certain guidelines that I require all my clients to observe. If your child needs to be seen by a doctor, please obtain written documentation from the doctor regarding when (and under what circumstances) your child will be safe to return to school (no longer contagious). This is to ensure that a child does not return to school when he or she may be in danger of exposing someone else to an illness. Some contagious illnesses are no longer contagious after the child has been on medication for 24 hours.
Upon application for enrollment you will be asked to fill out an immunization record or an exemption form. Warm Fuzzies Preschool does accept children whose parents have opted out of some immunizations or have an altered timeline. We mirror the Dexter Community Schools immunization policy. It is necessary that all immunizations are up to date or an exemption form must be on file. Immunization forms are your responsibility to keep updated. It’s a good idea to get a new printout from your doctor each time your child receives any new immunizations, which can then be turned in to me. If any changes are made throughout the year to your child’s registration form (address, phone numbers) please get those updates to me ASAP.
*A child cannot return until 12 hours after vaccinations.
Warm Fuzzies Preschool does NOT give any medications to children. The only exception is an Epinephrine Pen. If your child requires the use of his/her Epinephrine Pen at school the date and time will be documented. It is the responsibility of the parent to renew the prescription and provide a new pen when the current one expires. Any expired medications will be sent home with the parent for proper disposal. All emergency medications will be stored out of reach of children in appropriate temperature controlled environments. All emergency medications need to be accompanied by a current prescription with the child’s name, instructions for use, and must be signed by the child’s doctor. All prescriptions and medications will be sent home at the end of the school year (or when expired) and must be renewed at the beginning of every school year. If your child is on a non-emergency medication and it must be administered during school hours, you must come to school to give the medicine to your child. This will be documented, as well. There are many reasons for this policy. If this is of particular concern to you and your family, please see me.
—There are also some illnesses that by law exclude the child from attending school. Some of those illnesses are but not limited to:
· Infectious Conjunctivitis
· Infectious Diarrhea
· Chicken Pox
· Scarlet Fever
· Strep Throat
♥ When should a child stay home?
When a child has any of the following symptoms, he/she should be kept home.
· Fever- A fever is a sign that the body is fighting some problem. The importance of a raised temperature depends on what is causing the fever. A temperature of 100 degrees or higher means a child should stay home. In the event of a fever over 100 degrees, the child should not come to school until the fever has been down for 24 hours without the aid of a fever reducing medication such as Tylenol. If your child wakes with a fever and you administer a fever reducer, this generally will only last a few hours and I will have to call you to come and pick up your child. In the meantime the other children have been exposed to an undiagnosed illness.
· Vomiting or Upset Stomach- A child who has been vomiting can easily spread germs. If your child vomits while at school, you will be expected to come immediately to pick up your child from school. If you are unable to come as soon as you are called, please arrange for someone else to come to pick up your child. The child must stay home until 24 hours has passed with no vomiting episodes.
· Other Illness/Colds- When making a decision about whether or not to bring your child to school with symptoms other than those previously listed, please keep in mind how you would feel if another child’s parent brought him/her to school and exposed your healthy child. These situations will be handled on a case-by-case basis.
The policies that help ensure your child’s health are:
· My health policy is strictly adhered to.
· Good hygiene is stressed at all times.
· Every attempt is made to keep toys and play area sanitized.
· Food preparation is done in a safe and hygienic manner.
· Hand washing is required upon arrival, before eating, after the use of toilet, after outside play, and after messy crafts or projects.
*If your child is too sick to play outside or to participate in our daily activities, he/she is too sick to be at school.
*Only healthy children should attend school. Children must be fever free (without the use of fever reducing medication), diarrhea free, free of vomiting, and illness free for 24 hours before returning to Warm Fuzzies Preschool. If antibiotics are needed, a child may return 24 hours after being treated if above symptoms are not present.
♥ Trial Period/Withdrawal of Care
Warm Fuzzies Preschool has a two-week trial period when beginning school. I also require a minimum of a two-week notice for withdrawal of a child from Warm Fuzzies. If termination of care is necessary, a two-week notice will be given to the parent. Warm Fuzzies Preschool reserves the right to terminate a child’s enrollment at any time.
♥ Personal Possessions
Children are encouraged to bring a pillow, blanket, and snuggly friend for rest time. Also, please send an extra set of seasonally appropriate clothing with your child to keep at school. This should include socks, underwear, pants/shorts, and a shirt. Please clearly label ALL items with your child’s name. Please also send a water bottle or sippy cup with your child’s name so he/she can stay properly hydrated. Please keep all of your child’s personal toys at home. We have plenty of toys for your child to use while at school, and personal toys from home tend to cause problems with the other children.
Warm Fuzzies Preschool is not responsible for lost, stolen, or damaged property. Please be diligent about writing your child’s name on items that are necessary for school and keep other items not necessary for school at home. In the unfortunate event that your child deliberately damages, steals, or destroys property at Warm Fuzzies Preschool you, the parent or guardian, are responsible for fixing, replacing, or paying for the replacement of the damaged, stolen, or broken property.
In general pick-up and drop-off are not a good time to chat about your child’s progress in depth. At these times, it is important that you are available to connect with your child who wants to say goodbye or hello and get a hug and personal attention. Dave, and I are available through email and can be made available at other times to meet with you to discuss any issues, concerns, and about your child’s academic progress. A monthly newsletter will be sent home each month to inform parents of what’s happening at Warm Fuzzies Preschool as well as tips for extending learning and opportunities for Warm Fuzzies’ families to get to know each other better. Contact information when we need to be reached if we are on a field trip: Chelsea’s Cell: (734)255-4649, David’s Cell: (734)255-1924
♥ Potty Training/Diapering
We do not have a requirement that children are potty trained because we believe this puts unnecessary stress on a child and parents. We are happy to offer tips on potty training if you believe your child is ready. When your child does begin using the bathroom consistently at home, we are happy to have them continue to wear underwear at school. Please make sure to send two sets of extra clothes during this time. If an accident occurs, your child will be changed into fresh clothes. If it happens a second time, we will put a diaper/pull up on with the second set of clothing.
If your child is not potty trained, please send a package of diapers/pull ups on your child’s first day. We will let you know when we are running low and need another package. Wipes are not necessary to send unless you prefer using a specific brand. At Warm Fuzzies Preschool we change diapers on a regular basis. In general we change diapers every 2 hours or as needed. We change diapers while the children are standing on a clean sanitized surface and children and adults wash their hands after each changing. We always ask children to use the toilet before a new diaper is put on to help get them used to the routine of using the bathroom and washing hands. This helps in potty training when the time comes!
*** If your child has sensitive skin and you would like for me to apply a cream whenever I change the child’s diaper please clearly label the cream with your child’s full name and bring it to school.
I frequently review recall lists and remove any toys or equipment that have been recalled. A list of current recall items will be posted on the bulletin board.
♥ Minor Mishap
Minor scrapes and bruises handled at Warm Fuzzies Preschool will be reported to parents at pick-up with a Minor Mishap Form. Anything more major than a “minor mishap” will result in a phone call to the parent. If there is a small wound we will wash it with soap and water and I will apply a band-aid. Further first aid will need to be done at home. If a child bumps something he/she will be given an ice pack to hold on the area for a short period of time.
In the case of an EMERGENCY, I will administer the necessary first aid. 911 will be called and you will be notified immediately. Chelsea and Dave are all fully trained in First Aid and CPR. For non-medical related emergencies, I have a written emergency plan which can be viewed at your request. Drills for these types of emergencies are addressed further on this page.
♥ Emergency Response Plan
In the case of an EMERGENCY, we will follow the below procedures to ensure the safety of all of our children:
Fire– In the event of a fire, 911 will be called and the children and adults will evacuate the building and convene by the pig sign on the garage under the maple tree. We will remain there until all children are picked up by parents or until the fire department declares that our school is safe for reentry. If we are upstairs when the fire occurs we will come down the stairs, or if the lower level is unsafe, we will use the emergency exit window on the west side of the school. We will climb through the window, climb down the emergency ladder, and walk safely out to the meeting spot by the garage under the maple tree to wait for parents and the first department. Parents will be notified as soon as the children are in safe location.
Severe Weather- In the event of severe weather (tornado, severe storm, etc.) the children and adults will go down to the basement and take cover until the dangerous weather has passed.
Lockdown– In the event of a lockdown where a threat is identified outside of our school, the children and adults will remain indoors with the doors locked and blinds drawn. The doors will not be opened under any circumstance during a lockdown. We will stay in a lockdown until we are notified by the police that the threat is gone.
Reverse Evacuation– In the event of a reverse evacuation when there is a danger inside our school the adults and children will be safely escorted outside and will remain by the pig sign on the garage under the maple tree until the danger is gone.
Shelter-in-Place Emergency Situation– In the event of an emergency where our school is not safe, the children and adults will walk over to Stacey and Dave Forbes house. Their address is 10724 Island Lake Rd. We will remain at this location until parents arrive to pick up their children.
♥ Emergency Drills
In preparation for the above emergencies, Warm Fuzzies Preschool will practice the following drills at least two times per year:
· Fire (drill will be practiced once every month)
· Severe Weather
· Reverse Evacuation
· Shelter in Place
If there is a medical need for your child to be transported in an ambulance, this cost will be covered by the parents or guardians.
♥ Non-smoking environment
Warm Fuzzies Preschool is a non-smoking environment. Smoking is prohibited in the house or on the grounds during hours of operation.
♥ Chemical Use Policy
All caregivers, including myself, assistants, substitute caregivers and helpers, are prohibited from abusing prescription mediation or being under the influence of a chemical that impairs the individual’s ability to provide care. I will provide notification and training of said policy to all caregivers.
♥ Non-discrimination Policy
Warm Fuzzies Preschool does not discriminate on the basis of race, creed, color, national origin, religion, gender, or disability.
♥ Sun Protection
The sun’s rays can be extremely dangerous for young children. Please apply sunscreen to your child every day (during the hot summer months) before drop-off or upon arrival. I will choose a sunscreen and apply it to every child before we go outside in the afternoon (only on hot summer days). Please make sure you test the specific kind I use at home on your child before signing the permission slip allowing me to apply it. We want to make sure that your child does not have an allergy or reaction to the sunscreen. Also, every child is encouraged to keep a sun hat and sunglasses at school for daily use. We have a lot of shade on our playground but sunscreen, hats, and sunglasses provide extra protection from the sun’s harmful rays. Children under 1 year will not wear sunscreen but will be protected from the sun by wearing hats and playing in shaded areas.
Warm Fuzzies Preschool does not transport children on a regular basis.
♥ Grievance Procedure
If you are dissatisfied with some aspect of the services being provided by Warm Fuzzies Preschool, please bring the concern to my attention in a timely manner. It is very important to me that we have a partnership to provide the best education and care for your child. If you are unhappy about anything at Warm Fuzzies please allow me the opportunity to resolve the issue so that everyone is satisfied. If a resolution cannot be made then we will discuss finding a different placement for your child.
♥ Mandated Reporting
I am legally required to report suspected abuse or neglect. Child abuse may be reported using 911.