Melissa's Professional Childcare Center - Quality Childcare
                                 Childcare Handbook
                  Parents Information and Policy Handbook
Office Phone:           (773) 374-9378
This handbook contains information and policies which are important for you to know.  Every effort is made to work closely with your family to meet your child's developmental needs.
Philosophy and Mission
Melissa's Professional Childcare Center (Home) was established to meet the needs of the community by providing a safe and nurturing environment for all children attending by offering them a wide range of experiences designed for their fullest development, intellectually, socially, physically and emotionally.  Reflected in our care is a basic philosophy.
1.  Children by nature are active learners with  a drive to explore, master, be self directing, using all of their senses and all their muscles in the process.
2.  Children learn best in a situation which provides the security of stable routines balanced by frequently changing and new experiences.
3.  Children are best motivated to learn when they achieve approval and success through their own efforts.
4.  Children learn to organize and understand themselves by experiencing limits, which are reasonable and predictable.  Adult's guidance help's them to develop self control NOT based on fear or punishment.
5.  Children are sensitive and respond to non-verbal as well as verbal expressions from peers and adults.
The activities, therefore, include varied experiences based on age, in art (drawing, coloring and water painting) music, (children music, R&B, classical and dancing,), literature (children stories, age appropriate), directed playing (all children put together puzzles as a group), open play (all children's play non-directed), community life (social skills) which means playing with others without taking toys, pushing or hitting. 
All activities are developmentally appropriate. Opportunities are  afforded the children to play with children of their own age and to practice those skills, which make daily care more enjoyable.  Daily activities, include but not limited to: Story-time, ABC's, Shapes and Colors (all age appropriate).
Notice of Nondiscriminatory Policy
Melissa's Professional Childcare Center admits children of all races, color, national and ethnic origin to all rights, privileges, programs and activities.  It does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national and ethic origin.
Policy Regarding Admission of Handicapped Children American Disability Act (ADA)
It is our center's policy to operate within our State and Federal law to follow the ADA law and accept children with disabilities within reasonable boundaries by considering whether the acceptance would result in undue hardships to all parties.

Child Abuse

Any evidence of child neglect or abuse will be reported to the proper City/State authorities.  Evidence will be kept in the child's permanent file.


Children displaying aggressive behavior will be separated from the other children for a short period of time (time out-1 minute for each year of age i.e. 2 years old equal 2 minutes time out), talked to calmly and repeating the rules, re-route energy in a positive manner, or taking away privileges temporarily. Unacceptable Punishments includes: Spanking, humiliation, deprivation of food, water or rest.

Use of Tobacco, Alcohol and Drugs

No Smoking, No Drinking and No Drugs. They are NOT permitted on the property, within the building or by the entrance or gate. By the staff, parent's, legal guardian and visitors during arrival/ pickup of children. During day to day activities or during celebrations. 

Registration Fee

A  non-refundable $50.00 registration fee is required.

                                       Paperwork Required                          

1). Attending Requirement-State of Illinois Department of Human Services Certificate of Child Health Examination (CFS 600/Rev 5/2006)
Illinois Health Examination Form (CFS 600/Rev 5/2006) will be used for all children before they can be admitted into any child care facility in the State of Illinois.
2). Application/Record of Child Information, Consent To Day Care Providers and State of Illinois Department of Human Services Certificate of Child Health Examination
All listed forms must be completed on each child and placed in each child's individual file before admittance to any State Licensed Center.
3). Emergency Notification of Clients (Parents/Guardians)
For emergencies, we will refer to the child's Application/Record of Child Information Form (CFS 428) and Consents To Day Care Providers (CFS 593) and phone the parent's or legal guardian's at work, home or cell.  If the parent's or guardian's are unavailable, the alternate emergency numbers will be notified.
4). Birth Certificate.  A copy of your child's birth certificate is required during registration.  Section 406.12. The Missing Children Records Act  (325 ILCS 50/5)  requires that the parent or guardian of a child to be enrolled for the first time in a day care home must provide  certified copy of the child's birth certificate within 30 days after enrollment.   

The center will provide you with items: 1, 2, & 3.
Item 4: You should be able to obtain from the State that your child was born.  

Drop Off/Picking Up of Your Child
I provide individual care based on the time that you selected. Please call (773) 374-9378 if your drop off/pickup time changes.
Drop Off
Each client has selected a specific individual drop off time.  Please notify the center if there are any changes to your drop off time. Once the client has selected a drop off time, a center employee is notified of your drop off time and after insuring the safety of the children in the center waits near the door for (15) minutes  for your arrival.   After the (15) minutes has passed with no arrival or phone call the center employee leaves the door and will return as quickly as possible to the door upon your arrival.
Picking up your child
Each client has selected a specific individual pick up time.  Please notify the center if there are any changes to your pick up time.  Please call as soon  as you know you will NOT PICK UP your child at the time you selected. 
Substitute Pick-Up
Please notify the center when someone other than the parent or legal guardian listed on the Application/Record of Child Information form will be picking up your child.  The center policy is it will not release your child to anyone other than a parent/legal guardian or an individual listed on your emergency contact information form.
Also inform the person picking up your child that they are the only one allowed in the center and to please not arrive at the center with a group. 
Substitute (Care) Due To (Illness)
The center will give notice of any substitute care as soon as I become aware of the need.  The center's assistant childcare provider is approved by the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services and have current fingerprints and physical on file.
Late Picking Up
If you are going to be late please call the center at (773) 374-9378 as soon as possible and you MUST speak with a LIVE person to verify if the center can accommodate you.  If you must leave a message please leave a call back number, so that a center employee can return your call.  This is especially IMPORTANT for your child during cold weather. 
Non Notification to Center of Late Pickup

When the parents or guardian have not picked up their child by the pick- up time that they selected everything will be done to locate the parent or guardian before calling authorities. First I will call all the numbers that the parent or guardian have provided to me. Then I will call from the list of emergency contact. After (2) hours and I have not had a call back from the parents or guardian I will call the police for advisement on what my next step should be.

Pick-Up During Cold Weather
During cold weather it is EXTREMELY important that you notify the center as soon as you know you will be late. Fifteen (15) minutes before your scheduled pick up your child outer wear is put on and he or she is ready to go i.e. final feeding, final diaper change (age appropriate), snow suit, boots, gloves, hat and scarf. 
This is a waste of time if you do not arrive as you scheduled because (15) minutes after your selected pick up time all of your child's outer wear will be removed because these clothes are too hot for indoor wear for long periods of time.  Once you do arrive all of the clothing will be put back on. 
Double Parking in The Street During Drop Off/Pick Up
The center is located on a Residential Street with very limited parking, which means you may have to double park in the street while you drop off/pick up your child.  If you drop off/pick up your child (ren) based on the schedule  you selected a center employee will be at the door waiting on you for (drop off) and with your child during (pick up). If you arrive as you scheduled a center employee can bring your child out to you.
If you are always late dropping off/ picking up your child based on the schedule you selected the center employee will be at the door for (15) minutes after your selected time.  After that time we will arrive at the door as soon as we can.  Please be patient we are caring for the children in the center.
Doorbell (lateness)
Center employees are at the door until (15) minutes after the time you selected for drop off/pick up. Please do not arrive continually ringing the doorbell and pounding on the door.
Cell Phone Usage (During drop off/pick up)
Please refrain from using your "cell phone" during dropping off or picking up your child.  During "dropping off" parent's or guardian's "must" utilize this time to provide me with information that I need to care for your child.  During "picking up" time it is beneficial for you to listen to how your child's day was spent.
Late Fees (Pick-up)
Each client selected their own pick up time, which can be changed by the client by discussing it with center employees.  When your pick up time changes please notify the center at (773) 374-9378 as soon as possible.  All employees of the center has to work late when you are late and must be paid overtime as required by State Law.
      Late Fee Charge:  $1.00 per minute per child.
      Starting:  (15) minutes after the Client's selected pick up time.
     Late Fees Due:  Upon arrival to pick up your child.
Each client (private or subsidized) enters into a contract when center and client agree that the child will be placed in the center and when the center accepts the child, even before a written contract is signed.  A written contract will be presented within (3) business days after the child attend the center.  Each client is responsible for all childcare payments even if the subsidized agency does not approve your paperwork.
Returned Checks from all Clients (private/subsidized)
1.  $75.00 will be charged for the (1st) returned check.
2   $95.00  will be charged for the (2nd) returned check.
3.   After the (2nd) returned check all payments will be made in Cash, Money Order or Cashier check. 
4.    All fees are due once center employee present your Returned check to you.
5.    Your child "can not" attend until all fees are paid in full. 
Childcare Fees
All fees are confidential and provided to the client during the time of registration.  All co-payments are set by the subsidized agency any questions regarding your co-payment please contact your agency.
There are no refunds! If you cancel your enrollment, go on vacation, take days off, out due to illness, loss of job or dismissed from the center.
Absent (Without Notification)
Per State Law the center has a set number of (slots).  The Center can not financially afford to hold your slot open without notification from you when you are absent.  It is your responsibility to inform the center of your plans:  vacation, sick leave, job hours have changed, your child is sick or your child no longer needs care.  If you do not notify the center by calling (texting), writing (email) or any other form of communication after 2 Consecutive Business Days your slot will be filled.
Termination of Contract
A thirty (30) day written notice, verbal or phone call is required to terminate this contract.
Hours of Operation
1.  The Center's State licensed hours are  from 6:00 a.m. -6:00 p.m.  and 6:00 p.m. until 12:00 midnight.
2.  Childcare WILL ONLY be provided on Saturday, Sunday, State and Federal Holidays with prior agreement.
3.  The schedule of the Center's Vacation (paid)/State and Federal Holidays/Training and Closed Dates will be given to all client's by December 31st of each year for the coming year and again at (30) days before the date and again at (2) weeks before the date and Verbally (1) week before the date and VERBALLY the day before the date.
4.  Dates may have to be CHANGED but as soon as the Center is aware of any changes all clients will be notified either in writing or verbally.
                                           Daily Requirements
When Children ("Should Not") Attend!
These are health conditions but not limited to:
1.  Infectious Diseases i.e. pink eye
2.  Fever (High)
3.  Vomiting
4.  Diarrhea
5.  Constant runny nose (mucus gray)
6.  Ring Worms
7.  Open Sores
8. Special conditions that a health professional has advised would put your child's health at risk and others. 
The following items maybe brought to the center daily or a quantity maybe stored at the center.  An employee of the center will notify you before the stored quantity is exhausted.
                        (Bring Daily Diaper bag or leave at center)
1.  Diapers/diaper rash cream (ointment) and wipes
2.  Formula/bottles (age appropriate)
3.  Clothes (1) change
4.  Toothbrush and tooth paste (age appropriate)
5.  Underwear (cloth) (age appropriate)

All pacifier's must be attached to your child's clothes.  The center is not responsible if your child's pacifier gets misplaced or if your child receives a pacifier that do not belong to him or her.

Please trim your child's fingernails as often as needed.  When children are in active play they can scratch themselves as well as others.
Earrings, Jewelry and Hair Bows (Ribbons)
Wearing of earrings, hair bows and jewelry is allowed because these items can be religious in nature for some cultures.  The center is not responsible if these items are removed by your child are another.  Also if earrings are lost, or if jewelry is broken or if bows or ribbons are removed from the hair.  We will do all we can to encourage each child to not remove these items from themselves or each other.
Children "must not" arrive at the center with any form of money "paper or coins". Money is a safety and health hazard to small children  because money is widely circulated and children put "all" things in their mouth.
Cell Phones (Not allowed in Center) for infants/toddlers
Please "do not" give your child your discarded cell phone to play with as a toy.
Misc. Items Not Allowed
Please leave your child's toys at home!  Especially expensive electronic toys or battery operated!  The center is stocked with a wide "up to date" variety of toys.  Please only bring a toy if it is a security issue for your child.  The center is not "financially" responsible if a toy is broken or taken home by another child.  The following items are not allowed but not limited to:
1.    Toys
2.    Toy Weapons: guns, swords and knives  (none)!
3.    Jewelry and precious items
4.    Money, coins or paper
5.    Candy, gum and other sugary treats.
6.    Flowers
7.    Cell phone new or old
8.    Finger nail polish and nail polish remover
9.    Lip gloss and lip stick
10.  Parent's purses
11.   Dangling necklaces (may cause strangulation).
12.  Earrings. Over large. (Please ask center for explanation).
13.   Any other items deemed necessary by the center
Cell Phone.  School age children are permitted to have a cell phone in the center. The parent must  set the rules when your child can use their phone. Please tell center personnel these rules. If no rules are stated to the center your child will be permitted to use their phone as often as he/she wants.
All transportation is provided by the client.
             This Handbook Will Be Updated As Needed if you have any questions are concerns about the information contained or not contained in this Handbook please speak with Ms. Carson at the center or call (773) 374-9378. 
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