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Families, Enrolment and Confidentiality

Family/Staff Communication

The ECE Lab School believes strongly that establishing and maintaining a good relationship with parents is an essential component of a high quality early childhood program. The Lab School promotes this communication by using written notes as well as informal conversations. We encourage families to leave notes with important information so all the educators who work with their child can share the parent’s communication. Educators provide written information for families of toddlers on a daily basis. Staff use these written communications to inform families about the child’s experiences, accomplishments, behaviour, sleeping, feeding and other issues related to personal care (i.e., for toddlers -- wet diapers, bowel movements).

Family Engagement

The Lab School recognizes that parent engagement is an integral part of our effectiveness. Therefore, we endeavor to create a partnership with families, as they are the primary educators of their children.

To foster this partnership, we encourage full participation from families by helping them to understand of our policies, structures and curriculum. We build partnerships through our ongoing communications (written/verbal) and dealing with issues as they arise.

Our communication with families stresses their child’s achievements, rather than problem-centered discussions. Communication stressing their child’s achievements often creates a more positive and open dialogue between families and staff; which in-turn helps to develop mutual respect between families and staff.

In addition to formal communication, the Lab School has an open-door policy. Families are encouraged to volunteer their skills, abilities and artifacts that will enhance our Reggio Inspired pedagogy and inquiry based learning. Beyond the daily dialogue between family and staff, and the open-door policy at the Lab School, there are many opportunities such as, informal get-togethers, birthday celebrations, Nature Play Day, family night and curriculum, Mother’s Day Tea, workshops of interest, and pot luck dinners are examples of the type of activities in which families and staff plan and organize.

We encourage all families to use the Lab School as a resource. Staff members are all trained professionals in the field of Early Childhood Education. We are able to provide families with valuable information about child development. Also, we have resources and can recommend books, websites, or articles on topics of interest or concern to you.

Orientation/Transition

To acquaint new families with the ECE Lab School, and to assist in helping to make the transition a smooth one into the program, a family member is required to visit with the child prior to enrolment. During these visits, families and children will tour the building and meet the teachers.

Each child will visit the program at least once (and preferably several times) with a family member or designate before remaining in care without a family member. The parent, Lab School Manager and classroom staff determine the frequency and duration of these pre-visits. However, the age of the child, his or her previous experiences, and what best fits the needs of each family is taken into account.