Letter from Endeavor Schools
At StarChild Academy, it is our objective to provide the highest level of quality care and education for your child(ren) in the safest, most secure environment available. In order to provide this level of care and education, we began with a state of the art building, hired and trained highly qualified and caring teachers, instituted nationally recognized curricula, and placed special emphasis on safety and cleanliness.
In addition to our full-time programs, we also offer half-day preschool/Pre-K programs, and private Kindergarten through Fifth Grade programs. All of StarChild Academy’s programs have the same strong emphasis on curriculum.
Children who have the opportunity to start their education early in life have a much better chance of becoming successful. What a child can be, what his or her interests will be, and what his or her capabilities will be, are determined in a child’s early years. StarChild Academy’s educational philosophy is to provide your child with the skills necessary to excel in school and life. Our philosophy is based on traditional values and proven curricula that recognize the importance of each individual child’s interests and talents.
We thank you for your interest in StarChild Academy and look forward to being an important element in your child’s education and development.
Philosophy & Curriculum
StarChild Academy believes that education begins in the cradle and that every opportunity should be given to children to gain knowledge. For this reason, we begin our education program, including foreign languages, in our infant room. We know that the younger a child is when he or she learns to read, the easier it will be for him or her to succeed later in school.
Our structured learning environment focuses on pre-reading skills in our toddler and preschool classrooms and on reading fluency and comprehension skills in our Pre-K program. StarChild Academy offers specially designed, customized curricula for each age group.
Our program features nationally recognized curricula taught by well-trained, caring teachers. StarChild Academy utilizes the McGraw Hill Open Court Reading, Saxon Math, and ABeka Phonics curricula. Activities such as recognizing the alphabet, beginning to read, working with numbers, exploring with arts and crafts, and refining eye-hand coordination and problem solving skills are emphasized by StarChild Academy’s teachers.
The developing personality of each child becomes more evident as they mature. We make certain that the teachers at StarChild Academy take special care to watch the progress of each child and to report their progress to parents daily in writing.
StarChild Academy’s teachers know that a positive approach is the best approach. Using praise creates a good attitude towards learning and helps build a child’s self-esteem. Learning should be a fun, rewarding, and stress-free experience for the children and the teacher.
Teachers & Aids
All staff is fingerprinted and receives background checks by County, State, and Federal agencies.
All staff is required to have 45 hours of training in the following areas:
- State Child Care Facility Rules and Regulations
- Health, Safety, and Nutrition
- Identifying and Reporting Child Abuse & Neglect
- Child Growth & Development
- Behavioral Observation and Screening
- Developmentally Appropriate Practices and/or Special Needs Appropriate Practices
- Early Literacy & Language Development
All staff is required to have 10 hours of continuing education each year.
The majority of our full-time teachers have Child Development Associate degrees, Child Care Credentials, or the equivalent.
All of our teachers receive First Aid and CPR training.
- 6 Weeks to 12 Months .... 1 to 4
- 1 Year Olds .... 1 to 6
- 2 Year Olds .... 1 to 11
- 3 Years Olds .... 1 to 15
- 4 Year Olds .... 1 to 20
- 5 Years Olds & Up .... 1 to 25
For insurance and liability reasons, StarChild Academy does not encourage, sponsor, support, authorize, condone, or endorse the use of our staff as baby-sitters for enrolled children.
Arrival & Pick Up
For your convenience, StarChild Academy opens at 6:00 a.m. and closes at 7:00 p.m. We are open Monday through Friday from January through December.
For safety and security reasons, upon arrival at StarChild Academy, we encourage parents to remove all children from their vehicles, turn off the motor, secure valuable items, and lock all doors.
Please check your child(ren) in at the touch screen check-in monitor at the front desk before proceeding to their classroom. We encourage all parents to pick their child(ren) up in the classroom at the end of every day so that the parents can meet with their child(ren)’s teacher to discuss the day’s activities and pick up the day’s paper work. Please remember to check out your child(ren) at the touch screen monitor at the front desk at the end of each day.
Please do not leave your child(ren) unattended at any time. All children should be escorted by their parents when proceeding to their classroom and when leaving school.
No child may be released to anyone other than a parent or other authorized alternate. All alternates must be authorized in writing by a parent or guardian and must present a photo id when picking up.
StarChild Academy is closed on the following holidays:
- New Year’s Day
- Memorial Day
- Independence Day
- Labor Day
- Thanksgiving Day
It is requested that you notify the director two weeks prior to withdrawal from our program so that the open position can be filled.
Absences & Late Arrivals
The Florida Department of Children & Families has a child care regulation to reduce the number of children suffocating while unintentionally being locked in a hot car during the day. Child care personnel are required to be in contact with parents if children have not been dropped off at school by their normal scheduled time in hopes that a forgotten child does not perish in the family car.
To comply with this rule, we have established a process whereby our teachers will need to know when your child will not be attending school and when he/she will be late. If you know that your child will not be attending, has a doctor appointment, or will be late to school due to other reasons, please let your child’s teacher know the day before or contact StarChild Academy’s front desk by 8:30 a.m. on the morning of the absence or late drop off.
We are required by law to contact you and any and all of your listed emergency contacts until we know the whereabouts of your child(ren) if you do not notify us that your child will be late or absent. We appreciate your cooperation with this process. We hope this regulation prevents another senseless death of an innocent child.
If you have any questions regarding this procedure, please speak to someone at our front desk.
Children should come to school dressed to work, play, paint, experiment, and have fun. Their clothes should be comfortable, and easy to button, snap, or zip to allow independence in toileting.
Children play outside each day with the exception of rainy days. Please provide a sweater or jacket on cool days. Shoes must be closed-toed and rubber-soled. Sneakers and tennis shoes are best. Socks should be worn. Sandals, flip flops, and cowboy boots are dangerous on the playground and, for this reason, we request that they not be worn.
All children need an entire change of clothes (shirt, pants or shorts, socks, underwear, and shoes) to be kept in a zip lock bag or a back pack (for older children), placed in the child’s drawer or cubby, and changed with all seasons.
All clothing should be marked with your child’s name. Jewelry and other valuable items should not be worn or brought to school by your child. StarChild Academy cannot be responsible for lost or damaged clothing, jewelry, or other valuable items.
As a convenience to parents, StarChild Academy supplies baby wipes for children who are in diapers. Parents will need to provide a supply of diapers for their child. You are invited to leave up to a one week supply, and the teachers will notify you when more diapers are required.
StarChild Academy’s Advanced Pre-School and Pre-K, students follow a dress code which includes a plain, navy shirt (with or without collar), but with no writing or designs on it, and khaki pants or skirts. Navy polo shirts with an embroidered StarChild Academy logo are available for purchase.
Health & Safety
The health and safety of your child is of the utmost importance to us. We rely on parental cooperation to help prevent the spread of communicable disease throughout our program.
For the protection of others, if your child displays one or more of the following symptoms, please keep him/her at home:
- Severe Coughing, Causing the Child to Become Red or Blue in the Face or Make a Whooping Sound
- Difficult or Rapid Breathing
- Stiff Neck
- Diarrhea (More Than One Abnormally Loose Stool within a 24 Hour Period)
- Temperature of 101 Degrees Fahrenheit or Higher When in Conjunction with Other Signs of Illness
- Conjunctivitis (Pink Eye)
- Exposed, Open Skin Lesions
Unusually Dark Urine and/or Gray or White Stool
- Yellowish Skin or Eyes
- Severe Itching of the Body or Scalp (Including Head Lice)
- Any Other Unusual Sign or Symptom of Illness
If your child develops any of these symptoms at school, he/she will be isolated immediately and a parent will be notified to pick him/her up. For the protection of the other children at StarChild Academy, your child will need to remain at home until he/she is free of symptoms for at least 24 hours.
Discipline and Expulsion Policy
StarChild Academy's discipline policy includes developmentally appropriate social-emotional and behavioral health promotion practices as well as discipline and intervention procedures to prevent and respond to challenging behaviors. StarChild Academy utilizes preventive and discipline practices as learning opportunities to guide children’s appropriate behavioral development. StarChild Academy encourages its teachers and other staff to:
- Take a positive approach with each child from day one.
- Encourage and praise good behavior.
- Be aware of the child’s needs in any situation.
- Keep under consideration the child’s age and his/her emotional and intellectual development.
- Use patience and understanding.
- Always be fair and consistent.
- Keep discipline constructive by guiding a child in the direction you want them to grow.
- Talk to a child at their own level, making eye contact, and redirect the child’s attention to a more appropriate choice.
StarChild Academy trains its staff to appropriately interact with children to foster a healthy, safe environment that will encourage the child’s physical, intellectual, motor, and social development. Interactions with children that are aggressive, demeaning or intimidating in nature are strictly prohibited.
The use of physical punishment is prohibited at StarChild Academy. Discipline consists of positive redirection or, if necessary, time out. Time out is limited to one minute per year of age of the child per incident. Time out consists of sitting in an area facing the group, but apart, still within supervision of the teacher.
In order to provide the best care for your child(ren), parents are requested to notify StarChild Academy of changes in your child’s environment that might affect the behavior of your child(ren). Our being aware of changes in your child’s life will assist us in implementing the adjustment.
StarChild Academy's discipline policies prohibit children from being subjected to discipline which is severe, humiliating, frightening, or associated with food, rest, or toileting. The following discipline techniques are prohibited at StarChild Academy:
- The use of corporal/physical punishment including, but not limited to:
- Hitting, spanking, shaking, slapping, twisting, pulling, squeezing, or biting;
- Demanding excessive physical exercise, excessive rest, or strenuous or bizarre postures;
- Compelling a child to eat or have in his/her mouth soap, food, spices, or foreign substances;
- Exposing a child to extremes temperature;
- Rough or harsh handling of children, including but not limited to: lifting or jerking by one or both arms; pushing; forcing or restricting movement; lifting or moving by grasping clothing; covering a child’s head.
- Isolating a child in an adjacent room, hallway, closet, darkened area, play area, or any other area where the child cannot be seen or supervised.
- Binding, tying or restrict movement, or taping the mouth;
- Using or withholding food or beverages as a punishment;
- Toilet learning/training methods that punish, demean, or humiliate a child;
- Any form of emotional abuse, including rejecting, terrorizing, extended ignoring, isolating, or corrupting a child;
- Any abuse or maltreatment of a child;
Abusive, profane, or sarcastic language or verbal abuse, threats, or derogatory remarks in front of the child or about the child or child’s family;
- Placing a child in a crib/portable crib for a time-out or for disciplinary reasons.
Active play, both indoor and outdoor, will not be completely withheld from children who misbehave. For example, a child being left in the front office the entire time the rest of the children go outside to play would be unacceptable. Time-outs may be used during indoor or outdoor play provided that StarChild Academy’s age appropriate time limit is observed.
Our goal is to limit expulsion, suspension, or other exclusionary discipline (including limiting services) whenever possible, however, StarChild Academy reserves the right to ask parents to make alternative arrangements for the care of a child in the event that behavior becomes a problem that cannot be corrected. While judgement is always used, some of the reasons that parents may be asked to find alternate arrangements include:
Leaving supervised areas (classrooms, the dining room, playgrounds, etc.) without permission.
Injuring other children.
Intentionally injuring themselves.
Damaging school property.
Disruptive behavior in class.
Failure of parents to pay tuition in a timely manner.
Food & Nutrition Policies
StarChild Academy provides nutritious meals and snacks of a quantity and quality to meet the daily nutritional needs of the children. The USDA MyPlate, June 2011, is used to determine what food groups to serve at each meal or snack and the serving size of the selected foods for children ages two and older. The categories “oils” and “discretionary calories” are not considered food groups. Copies of the USDA MyPlate may be obtained from the USDA website at http://www.choosemyplate.gov or from the following link http://www.flrules.org/Gateway/reference.asp?No=Ref-03036. Using the USDA MyPlate, breakfast consists of at least three different food groups, lunch consists of at least four different food groups, and snacks consist of at least two different food groups.
Food provided by StarChild Academy directly, or by contract with an outside source such as a caterer, will be served only if in sound condition, free from spoilage and contamination, and safe for human consumption. All food is stored and handled in a sanitary manner at all times.
StarChild Academy has adequate equipment available to maintain food safety.
- Meat, poultry, fish, dairy products, and processed foods are inspected under the United States Department of Agriculture requirements.
- No raw milk or unpasteurized juice is served without the written consent of the parent or legal guardian.
- No home-canned food is served.
- No home-grown eggs are served.
- No recalled food products are served.
- All raw fruits and vegetables are washed thoroughly before being served or cooked.
- To prevent food from becoming potentially hazardous, hot foods are maintained at a temperature of 135 degrees Fahrenheit or above, and cold foods are maintained at a temperature of 41 degrees Fahrenheit or below. StarChild Academy supplies adequate equipment to maintain temperature requirements.
- Food is thoroughly cooked and/or reheated.
If StarChild Academy provides or makes available food to children in care from an outside source such as a caterer, or as the result of a learning activity provided by our child care program, such as a garden, it is StarChild Academy’s responsibility to ensure all food intended for consumption by a child in care is in sound condition, free from spoilage and contamination, and safe for human consumption. A copy of the license or permit for caterers is kept on file at StarChild Academy.
StarChild Academy maintains a food acceptance log for all pre-prepared meals being transported into the facility.
Parents or legal guardians are advised in advance of each food-related activity, such as special occasions and learning activities, which include food consumption. Written parental permission may be obtained in the form of a general or specific permission slip. Documentation of parent permission for food activities is maintained for a minimum of four months from the date of each activity.
Parents are informed of food-related activities as follows:
- Regular Meals and Snacks - Through Weekly Menus in the Parent Information Center, in the Dining Room, and Online
- Classroom Holiday Parties - Through Sign Up Sheets in Each Classroom
- Field Trips - Through the Field Trip Schedule
- Parent’s Night Out - Through the Parent’s Night Out Sign Up Sheet
- Birthday Parties - Will Occur on Various Dates Throughout the School Year Based on the Children’s Birthdates
- Learning Activities and Other - Through Daily Reports Provided to Parents
If a special diet is required for a child by a physician, a copy of the physician’s order, a copy of the diet, and a sample meal plan for the special diet is maintained in the child’s file and followed. If the custodial parent or legal guardian notifies StarChild Academy of any known food allergies, written documentation is maintained in the child’s file for as long as the child is in care. Special food restrictions are shared with staff and are posted in a conspicuous location.
Meal and snack menus are planned, written, dated, and posted for parents at the beginning of each week in the Front Lobby, the Dining Room, and online. Any menu substitution is noted on the menu. All meals and snacks prepared outside of the facility’s kitchen or designated food preparation area, such as catered food, are listed along with the source of the prepared food. Daily meal and snack menus are maintained for a minimum of four months.
Documentation of parental permission for field trips and food activities/special occasions is retained for a minimum of four months.
Written documentation of known food allergies (if applicable) is maintained for as long as the child is in care.
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Please let StarChild Academy’s Front Desk staff know if you do not want your child to participate in any particular food-related activities, including regular meals and snacks, classroom holiday parties, field trips, Parent’s Night Out, birthday parties, learning activities, and other food related activities.
For minor illnesses, our staff can administer medication. Please see the front desk for authorization forms. The Department of Children & Families’ rules, as well as StarChild Academy’s recommendations regarding these rules, are outlined below.
Florida Department of Children & Families Rules
“Child care facilities are not required to give medication, however, if they choose to do so, the following shall apply:
- Prescription and non-prescription medicine brought to the child care facility by the custodial parent or legal guardian must be in the original container. Prescription medication must have a label stating the name of the physician, child’s name, name of the medication, and medication directions. All prescription and non-prescription medication shall be dispensed according to written directions on the prescription label or printed manufacturer’s label.
- All medicines must have child resistant caps.
- Medication which has expired or is no longer being administered shall be returned to the custodial parent or legal guardian.
- A written record documenting the child’s name, the name of the medication, date, time and amount of dosage to be given, and signature of the custodial parent or legal guardian shall be maintained by the facility. This record shall be initialed or signed by the facility personnel who gave the medication.”
StarChild Academy’s Recommendations
- Please bring a doctor’s note if you want us to administer a dosage different than what is indicated on the container for the age of your child or if the container says “do not administer without physician’s approval” or has similar wording. If the container says “consult a physician if symptoms persist for more than 7 days” or has similar wording, please bring a doctor’s note saying that it is okay to continue administering the medicine.
- Please do not leave non-emergency medicine at StarChild Academy unless we have a current Authorization for Medication form. Authorization for Medication forms are valid only for the current week. We cannot store non-emergency medicine here “just in case” it might be needed.
- Please indicate the time that non-emergency medicine needs to be administered. We cannot administer non-emergency medicine “as needed”.
Please see our Front Desk staff regarding the administration of emergency medications such as EpiPens.
If your child has a minor accident, the staff will take such actions as will comfort your child (for example, washing a wound, applying a bandage, and giving a hug). Your child’s teacher will prepare a Boo Boo Report for your signature for any injuries.
If your child has an accident that results in an injury calling for professional medical care, the parent, guardian, or parentally-designated emergency contact person will be called (examples include large bumps, head injuries, uncontrollable nose bleeds, cuts that may require stitches, or possible fractures.)
In obvious emergency situations, Orange County Fire Rescue Department will be called.
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If an emergency situation develops such as severe weather, fire, physical problems with the building, or a power failure, the children’s safety is our first concern. If it is necessary to close the school, parents will be notified to make arrangements for early pick-up of their child(ren).
StarChild Academy is equipped with a fire alarm system, fire sprinklers, and fire extinguishers. Fire drills are conducted monthly to familiarize the children with evacuation procedures.
Internet Camera System
At StarChild Academy, we provide a state-of the-art environment for you and your child. As a part of this environment, we offer you the opportunity to look into your child’s classroom at any time of the day to see what his or her class is doing. This all happens using the latest technology and the Internet.
- This service is available to parents at no additional charge.
- The system features sophisticated password security.
- Parents are able to view their child’s classroom, the dining room, and the playground (but for security reasons are not able to view other classrooms).
- If you have any questions about the activities in the classroom, you are welcome to call the school and we will put you directly in touch with your child’s teacher via our internal telephone system.
If you are interested in more information about StarChild Academy’s Internet Camera System, please contact the front desk.
In addition to our Internet Camera System, StarChild Academy uses an internal closed circuit television system to monitor activities at the school. All parents are welcome to view their child’s classroom from the reception area using our closed circuit system.
StarChild Academy encourages frequent communications between the school and the families that we serve. The channels of communication in place are listed below:
- StarChild Academy’s web site at StarChildAcademy.com includes information on our curriculum programs, classroom schedules, extra-curricular activities, field trips, weekly menus, our Parent’s Night Out program, our free Internet video service, school policies & procedures, tuition rates, careers, and even franchise opportunities.
- StarChild Academy’s monthly newsletter includes information on topics such as this month’s curriculum, extra-curricular activities, our free Internet video service, our Parent’s Night Out program, and upcoming holidays.
- We encourage parents to speak with their child’s morning teacher when dropping off their child.
- Our free Internet video service allows parents to watch their children all day long in their classroom, the dining room, and the playground.
- Each classroom at StarChild Academy has a telephone allowing parents to call and speak with their child’s teacher.
- StarChild Academy provides daily reports to parents for their children in our full-time Infant through Pre-K programs. Attached to these reports are your child’s class work, art work, and homework assignments so that you know what your child is learning at school. Weekly reports are provided for our Half-Day Preschool and Pre-K children.
- We encourage parents to speak with their child’s afternoon teacher when picking up their child.
Parent/teacher conferences are available to parents to discuss your child’s progress at StarChild Academy.
- The owner and the director are available at the Front Desk to answer any questions or address any concerns that you may have.
We want your family’s experience at StarChild Academy to be positive and we will work hard to achieve your satisfaction. If you are not completely pleased with any part of our program, we encourage you to speak with your child’s teacher, one of our directors, or one of the owners. We will do everything possible to address any issues of concerns.
Children enrolled in our program must have the following forms on file:
- Transportation Agreement (School-Age Children Only)
- Infant Information Sheet (Infants Only)
StarChild Academy provides many toys for your child’s playtime. Therefore, we request that parents not allow their child(ren) to bring toys from home. We cannot be responsible for lost or damaged toys.
StarChild Academy provides nutritious meals and snacks for the children. Please do not allow your child(ren) to bring food (including breakfast), drinks, or gum to school. We provide sippy cups for the appropriate age groups. We cannot be responsible for sippy cups brought by the children from home.
StarChild Academy provides sheets, blankets, and mats for nap time. These items are washed on a regular basis. For health and hygiene reasons, we ask that children not bring blankets and pillows to school.
Special recognition of a child’s birthday is planned by the teachers. You are welcome to bring a special snack such as cookies or cupcakes. Please do not bring red or purple juice because they stain. We also ask that parents not bring popcorn, chips, pretzel nuggets, whole grapes, nuts, cheese cubes or any other food that is of similar shape and size of the trachea/windpipe for children under 4 years of age.
We request that you not bring pets or other animals to StarChild Academy without first checking with our Front Desk staff.
StarChild Academy is open to you, the parent, at any time. We do request that you make your presence known immediately to the person in charge. Although we request cooperation in not disrupting our program, parents are permitted access to all parts of our school at any time that their child is present.
Three-year-old (and older) students attending StarChild Academy’s programs must be completely potty trained.
We accept children without regard to race, religion, sex, or national origin.
Florida Statutes prohibit smoking, including e-cigarettes, on the premises of child care facilities.