+ Do I still have to pay the full monthly fee, even if my child has been absent for a length of time?
Yes, the full monthly fee must be paid, even if your child has been absent due to illness or because you have gone on holiday. When you have registered your child, you book a place in the creche. We cannot give this space to a new applicant until you have given notice to terminate your child's attendance. Even when your child is absent, the space belongs to him or her, and the expenses of running the day care centre continue and do not change due to the absence. If a child is absent for a very long period due to a terrible illness, a possible reduction in the fees for the period of absence can always be discussed with us.
+ If my child has attended your Grade R class, do you guarantee that he or she will get a space in the school of my choice?
Unfortunately, we are unable to guarantee a space in a school. Children's Paradise is well known among the schools in this area and our children are always well received. However, you, as the parent, must apply for a space at the school of your choice as early as in July, because schools are often not able to take all the applicants. You are then helped on a first come, first serve basis. We can and do write recommendations, if that helps you to secure a space.
+ If my child is identified as having a problem during the annual Occupational Therapist screening test, are we obliged to have the therapy with the Occupational Therapist that works on your premises?
There is absolutely no obligation at all. In fact, you are welcome to, firstly get a second opinion on the test results and, secondly to have your child receive therapy where and from whom you prefer. This is just a service we offer, because most parents find it difficult to take off from work to drive their child to a therapist. It is just so much more convenient to have the therapy at the creche that the child attends.
+ If my child suffers from food allegies or sensitivities, how do you handle this with the cooked meals you provide?
The most common sensitivities allergies are nuts, dairy and wheat. Nuts are not used at all when the meals are cooked. Dairy is only used in cooked form, which is a lesser problem than raw milk. For the milk on the porridge, you can bring us the rice milk or soya milk that your child uses. For wheat products, you need to supply us with wheat-free pasta or rice noodles, which will then be cooked for your child.
+ Do you provide a transport service for bringing the children to and collecting them from the creche?
Unfortunately, due to time constraints and the sheer logistics involved, we do not provide transport. We do, however, have several excellent transport services that bring and fetch children. We can supply you with the names of drivers and their contact details upon request.
+ During these times of increasing criminal activities, can you guarantee the safety of our children?
Unfortunately, no one can guarantee the safety of your child in these troubled times. In the past 12 years, we have had one incident of a car-jacking on our premises and during this incident none of the children were in danger. Due to the fact that there are constantly people driving onto the premises and that the creche is close to our house where there are always two or more persons at home, the premises are actually quite safe during the day. However, we have numerous requirements and measures in place to minimalise the possibility of a serious crime happening while your child is at the creche and to maximise the chances of a positive outcome, should an incident occur. We are linked to an armed reaction unit and we are part of and linked to the neighborhood watch by radio transmitter. I carry this radio on my person at all times. We also have an evacuation plan, and an emergency drill is practiced with the children on a regular basis.
+ What is the teacher-pupil ratio at your creche?
The ration depends on the age of the children. The small children who still have to learn basic life-skills like eating by themselves and potty-training, demand more attention per child. Grade R children are in the final year of preparing for big school, so they also require more individual attention. In the baby class (3 to 24 months), I allow six babies per care-giver. In the toddler class (2 to 3 years), no more than 10 children are allocated to each teacher. The seniors (4 to 5 years) have a higher ratio of 15 children to each care-giver, while Grade R, where the children need more intense attention and lots of work has to be completed) only allows for 10 children per teacher.
+ How much time of the day is spent actually teaching the children and how much time do they have to play?
Formal lessons, as we call them, are from 8h30 until 10 o' clock, and again from 11h30 until 12. The Grade R pupils also have another lesson from 12h45 until 13h45. These lesson times are used to teach a wide range of life-skills, academic, emotional and physical. We also firmly believe that children learn by playing and by interacting with each other and the care-givers on a social level. So, playtime is actually also valuable lesson time.
+ How do you deal with separation anxiety that is frequently displayed in new children?
Each child reacts differently when confronted by a new situation. Some children walk into the creche and feel at home immediately. Others are a little shy and timid at first, but settle in rather quickly. And some howl in protest, because they are afraid of the new surroundings and people in it, and because they do not want to let go of mommy. Such loud protesters usually calm down a few minutes after mommy has left and normally need a few days before they come to creche willingly. We try to distract the child by finding something interesting or an activity to occupy them. Sometimes just holding the child close until he or she has calmed down also does the trick. We find it better if mommy says goodbye and leaves quickly instead of lingering around to see how Junior is coping. But some moms and their toddlers need time to gently separate from each other. So, ultimately, how you want to handle the separation, is completely up to you.
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Website consultant: Juan Willem
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