Parent Handbook

Spokane Montessori School North uses guidance techniques which will help the students understand the behavior expected of them, will set well-defined limits, and will enable them to follow the rules without undue conflict.

The rules and limits are stated to the child at the beginning of the school year in a positive manner.

“We use a soft voice in our school.”

“We walk in our school.”

“We take care of our school and the materials in it.”

“We are always kind.”

We repeat and restate boundaries to individual children when necessary, often giving them extra practice as a reminder.

“To help you remember to walk, please go back and practice walking across the room.”

Choices are given when possible that address the problem, but also offer the child a way to exit gracefully from the problem.

“Would you like to handle that work carefully or put it back on the shelf.”

“Would you like to choose work (rather than disturb other children) or shall I help you?”

We avoid nagging. We tell the child what to do just once, then follow up by asking the child if he/she remembers what was asked. We make positive statements.

“Use your words to say that you’re angry.” Rather than, “Don’t hit!”

We use “I messages” when appropriate.

“I feel sad when you step on our materials because if you break them no one can use them.”

We get the child’s attention by crouching down to his/her level, making eye contact, speaking quietly and asking the child to repeat the direction.

When Problems Continue…

If the problem continues, we restrict his/her freedom of choice. The child may be asked to stay beside a teacher or we may say something like:

“You have lost your choice of working with that material.”

“Please sit quietly right here until you get your control.”

When disruptive or destructive behavior continues, we will contact the parents and ask for a conference. We will then advise an appropriate course of action.

If a child is unable to gain control and requires more individual attention than can be given within child to staff ratios, we may need to contact a parent. A child requiring one-to-one attention can lead to discontinuation of child-care services.

What We Do Not Do…

Hit, spank, shake, scold, shame, isolate, label ‘bad or naughty’ or any other negative reaction to the child’s behavior. All forms of corporal punishment are forbidden.

Adequate nutrition is essential for the growth and development of all children. Meeting the nutritional needs of the children in our care is extremely important to us at Spokane Montessori School.

Parent’s Provide:

A sack lunch, which should include: a dairy product, a protein food, bread or bread alternate (rice, beans, tortilla, pasta) fruit and/or vegetable. No beverage, no napkin, no candy and no silverware please. If your child’s lunch needs to be cooled there must be an ice-pack in their lunch box. Refrigeration for lunch boxes is not available. Warming of lunches is not available but you are welcome to send foods in a thermos.

Our School Provides:

The school will provide two complete and healthy snacks. Our snack pattern includes three items. One (or more) dairy or protein source daily. Each snack includes three age-appropriate servings of a dairy or protein food or bread/bread alternate or fruit/vegetable juice. Snack will be available to the children in the morning and the afternoon. The beverage at lunchtime is water. We will provide all cups, glasses, bowls and utensils.

Helpful Hints:

Remember that small children may be overwhelmed by large amounts of food. Send appropriate quantities – a whole apple may be too much. Cut it in half and sprinkle it with fruit fresh or lemon juice to preserve its appearance. Send yogurt, applesauce etc. in small container so there isn’t an overwhelming amount.We send home any food that the child does not eat at lunch so that you can see how much they are eating, what they may refuse to eat etc. This is intended to help you plan their lunches. Place heated foods in a thermos container. We do not heat up food for the children.If you are in the habit of sending desserts, send healthy ones – fruit, oatmeal or peanut butter cookies, pudding that is truly made with milk etc. If a child consistently brings food that is exceptionally high in fat, salt and sugar, expect a friendly reminder from us about the nutritional requirements of preschoolers.

Early identification of potential developmental delays is critical to help ensure that children get the resources they need to support positive development. As a result Spokane Montessori will ask you to fill out a brief developmental screener about your child upon enrollment at SMS. We will respond to you regarding this screening within 30 days. You will receive an email communication or will be asked to set up a conference with the Director to discuss possible developmental services that might be helpful within 30 days of the screening.

Health Information of Children

You will be required to fill out a health history for each child upon admission. This will include conditions of the child which may be adversely affected by the school experience or which may adversely affect the other children. This history must include allergic reactions and the date of the child’s last physical examination. The immunization form must be filled out before admission to the school and it must be updated annually. We use the standard immunization form required of all school age children. The state requires that each child in our care have an annual physical exam.

We require full names, addresses and telephone numbers (home and business) of parents or guardian, physician and other persons to be contacted in case of emergency. This shall be kept in a file, which is easily available to all the staff, along with all persons authorized to take the child from the school.

Authorization to Act in Case of Emergency

You will be asked to give the school written authorization to act according to the best judgment of the staff if immediate action is necessary, in case of illness or accident, and a parent or guardian cannot be reached immediately.

In Case of Accident or Emergency

All staff is trained in CPR and First Aid, which will be administered by staff members when necessary.

The staff will treat minor injuries and the child will remain in the school. The injury will be reported to the parent either by telephone or when the child is picked up. Every injury and the treatment given are recorded in our school files. All head injuries will be reported to parent/guardians via telephone.

Major injuries requiring medical treatment or hospitalization are also reported to DCYF.

All parents are informed when the children are exposed to communicable diseases.

We go outdoors everyday, weather permitting. Fresh air and exercise are essential in maintaining a healthy body and healthy mind. There are more cold viruses and germs in a closed up building full of children than there are outdoors. Exposure to cold weather does not cause illness. Even a child showing slight cold symptoms or “not feeling well” will usually benefit from going outside as long as discretion is used in keeping him/her bundled up properly and making sure he/she doesn’t play too hard. Our general policy is that every child will go out with the group and no child will stay indoors except by teacher discretion. A child just returning from an illness will be allowed one day of staying indoors at the parent’s request. The parent of an asthmatic child can request that the child be kept in if necessary.

This policy is in place for your child’s health and the protection of all students at Spokane Montessori School. Please respect these regulations.

On the advice of health experts we will not allow children or staff with any of the following symptoms to be or remain in care:

  • Fever of 100.5 degrees or higher (axillary)
  • Consistent green mucus draining from nose
  • Diarrhea 2 times or more in a school day
  • Severe sore throat
  • Undiagnosed rash
  • Shows severe signs of irritability or confusion
  • Vomiting on 1 or more occasions or 1 bloody stool
  • Draining rash or sore
  • Eye discharge or pinkeye
  • Fatigue preventing the child from participating in regular activities
  • Any sign of lice or scabies

Children and Staff can be readmitted after they have been:

  • Symptom free without ibuprofen/acetaminophen for 48 hour and/ or
  • If necessary, on antibiotics for 24 hours and/or
  • Sores are properly covered

If a student or staff person has one or more of these symptoms then they must provide a negative Covid test prior to returning to school:

  • Fever (≥100.4°F) or chills
  • Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
  • Muscle or body aches
  • New loss of taste or smell
  • Cough (new, changed, or worsening)
  • Nausea, vomiting, or diarrhea
  • Fatigue
  • Sore throat
  • Congestion or runny nose*

If childcare staff or the director have concerns about a child’s ability to safely return to care, we reserve the right to request a note from the child’s health care provider. Parents will be notified in writing about any infectious or communicable disease occurrence.

We ask that ill people, as described above, not attend childcare for the following reasons:

They are unable to be an active part of our daily program. They expose other people to illnesses, and they are at risk for being exposed to other diseases when their resistance is low.

When a child is excluded from attending our school the staff will note this in an illness log as well as the attendance book.

Thank you so much for respecting the health and safety of your child as well as staff and other students.