Parent Handbook

Creative Curriculum and Gold Assessment

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Tuition & Fees

Registration Form

Parent Agreement

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School Transportation Plan

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Operational Policies Agreement

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Grove Hill Academy FAQ

Do you offer any discounts?

We offer a 20% discount to families with multiple children attending the program. The discount is applied to the tuition cost for the oldest child enrolled. For example, if there is a 4-year-old and 1-year-old enrolled, the 20% discount will be applied to the 4-year-old’s tuition. Tuition is not discounted for families only needing part-time care.

Because Grove Hill Academy is funded completely from tuition and fees, upon enrollment, families agree to pay all applicable tuition and fees in advance as stipulated. Tuition is not reduced or refunded for any reason such as child absences, unexpected closings, severe weather, vacations, or domestic situations.

What payment options are available?

Payment options include weekly, biweekly, and monthly. Payments are considered late on the 1st working day after the due date. A fee of $5.00 is assessed daily for each day payments are late.

Is My Enrollment Fee Refundable?

No, the required enrollment fee of $175.00 is not refundable.

What is the Registration Fee and is it Refundable?

Each year, a nonrefundable annual registration fee of $175.00 is charged. (This is not the same as the enrollment fee.) The annual registration fee covers ongoing consumable maintenance, custodial, and educational supplies and resources.

Do you charge if I'm late to pick up my child?

A fee of $1.00 per minute is incurred when a parent is late in picking up a child. Late payment must be made at the time of pick up (6:00 p.m.) Consistently late pick up is unfair to program staff and can jeopardize the relationship between the family and the program. The program reserves the right to cease enrollment of children whose families cannot adhere to the hours of operation.

What are Special Care Fees?

Grove Hill Academy strives to provide a supportive environment for each child regardless of challenges or limitations that might accompany his/her development. However, as a private program, some additional resources that might be necessary to completely meet each individual need may be limited. In situations where additional staffing and/or other supports are deemed necessary for a child’s physical, social, emotional, and/or learning needs, GHA will contact families to discuss any possible additional fees that might be required. As well, we will attempt to coordinate with early intervention services that families may secure for their child.

Do you provide items or will I need to supply them?

Families are responsible for all items and supplies accompanying the child’s age and developmental needs. The program does not supply diapers, formula or any other product used for the child’s personal care.

Families are expected to maintain the program’s inventory of personal supplies. Staff will notify parents when their child is running low on supplies. Should parents not provide the necessary supplies, the cost of those supplies (for example diapers) will be added to the tuition. Diapering supply fees will be billed at $2.00 per use. The parent will be called to the program immediately when adequate food, formula, or breast milk is not supplied.

How much notice do you require if I want to withdraw my child from Grovehill Academy?

A two-week written notice is required when withdrawing your child from the program. Grove Hill Academy may at its discretion require that a child be withdrawn in the best interest of the child, other children, and/or the ongoing administration of the program. Under most circumstances, GHA will attempt to provide a two-week notice of withdrawal. However, depending on the circumstances, it is possible that no advance notice will be given. No refunds of paid tuition or fees are provided within a designated payment period.

What is your sign-in and sign out procedure?

Grove Hill Academy uses the childcare program software, Procare, to manage children’s files and attendance. Parents are required to check in/out their child upon arrival and departure at the computer station located at the entrance of the facility.

Parents are required to sign the attendance sheet in the classroom upon arrival and departure due to licensing requirements. Every child must be signed out daily. If a parent does not sign a child in or out as described, a $5 charge will be applied PER signature due at time of child pick up. The State of Alabama requires a parent to sign a child in upon arrival and out upon departure. This procedure is essential to our ability to remain a licensed facility.

Our responsibility begins when you place your child in the care of a staff member and ends when you take him/her from the care of a staff member. Please do not allow your child to wander off unattended or leave the building ahead of you. For safety purposes, only those listed on the enrollment forms as designated person for pick up will be permitted to leave with your child/children. If a circumstance should arise for someone other than those on your list to pick up your child/children, you will need to update your list in advance. We will require a Valid ID for identification of an individual we do not recognize. Any person attempting to pick up a child from GHA will be expected to comply with our policies and procedures.

GHA staff members are dedicated to providing well-planned experiences and environments for children. Therefore, we feel that it is important that children arrive each morning in time to participate in the planned activities and routines of the day. If you find that your child will arrive after 10:00 a.m., please notify staff in advance to avoid unintended disturbances in the classroom activities (including nap, snack, lunch times) and to ensure a smooth transition. As necessary, please involve the director and/or assistant director to assist you in late arrivals.

What happens if my child gets hurt?

GHA makes every effort to ensure the safety of your child while in our care. Unfortunately, accidents do occur. Program staff members are trained in CPR and basic first aid procedures. Should your child experience an injury at GHA, we have implemented the following procedures:

  • The teacher will immediately advise the administrative staff.
  • The administrative staff will determine the severity of the injury (i.e., scrapes, bumps, bruises, etc.)
  • We will administer first aid, call the parent and/or guardian to report injury, and forward an accident report home with the person that picks up your child at the end of the day.
  • In case of a serious accident or injury, EMS (911) will be contacted first. Within the limits of their ability, the staff will administer first aid. We will make every attempt to contact you immediately. If we cannot reach you, we will call the person you have indicated on the forms to make medical decisions for your child. If we cannot reach you, we will release your child into the custody of the emergency first responders to transport your child for immediate medical care.
  • Staff is prohibited from transporting an injured child. A staff member will remain with your child until you arrive.
  • According to DHR regulations, families are completely responsible for the medical care of their child resulting from any illness or injury. GHA is not financially responsible for medical care needed by any child.

What are your policies on illness and child care?

High quality programs take extra precautions to prevent the spread of disease. Even with precautions, children new to childcare programs are likely to experience an increase in mild illnesses. The frequency and severity of these will vary from child to child. When a child is ill, a special level of attention and care is required. Therefore, when your child’s illness is such that he/she is unlikely to participate normally in program activities, he/she should remain at home. Families will be informed when children become ill at school and must be picked up. As necessary, children who become ill at school may be cared for by a staff person in the facility clinic until parent arrives. When parents are called to pick up a sick child, we expect pick up to occur within 30 minutes of notification. If contact cannot be made with a parent in a reasonably short time, we will contact the person(s) designated on your emergency care form and ask them to pick up your child. The following conditions require that children be picked up from GHA:

  • Fever of 101 or greater, until 24 hours symptom free without fever reducing medication
  • Signs/symptoms of severe illness, including: lethargy, uncontrolled coughing, inexplicable irritability or persistent crying, difficulty breathing, and/or wheezing
  • RSV (respiratory syncytial virus): may return after 5 days with doctor’s note
  • Diarrhea and changes in regular bowel movements not associated with diet changes or medications; diarrhea should cease for 24 hours before returning to the program unless approved by physician
  • Blood in stools not explainable by dietary change, medication, or hard stools
  • Vomiting (single instance) The child can return after vomiting has been resolved for 24 hours or until a health care provider determines the cause for vomiting is not contagious and the child is not in danger of dehydration
  • Rash until a physician determines that these symptoms do not indicate a communicable disease
  • Pink eye (conjunctivitis) until after treatment has been initiated for 24 hours
  • Head lice: must stay home until all nits have been removed from the scalp (have evaluated with director/assistant director upon return)
  • Scabies, return with approval from doctor’s note
  • Tuberculosis, until a health care provider states that the child is on appropriate therapy and can attend childcare
  • Impetigo, until all sores are dried and crusted over
  • Hand Foot and Mouth sores have dried and crusted and no fever
  • Strep throat, until 24 hours after initial antibiotic treatment and cessation of fever
  • Chicken pox, until all sores have dried and crusted
  • Pertussis, until 5 days of appropriate antibiotic treatment has been completed
  • Mumps, until 9 days after onset of symptoms
  • Measles, until 4 days after onset of rash
  • Rubella, until 6 days after onset of rash
  • Unspecified respiratory tract illness accompanied by another illness which requires exclusion
  • Pinworms, return after full treatment and no signs of worms or symptoms

If your child travels outside the USA you will be required to have a medical release from a physician stating the child is free of infectious or contagious disease before he/she may return to Grove Hill Academy.

Will you administer medication to my child if ill?

We do not administer any medication to children in our care except in cases of recurring medical conditions, such as asthma or allergic reactions. The child’s parent or health care provider may sign a medication authorization form allowing Grove Hill Academy to administer the medication when symptoms occur for up to a six-month period. The authorization must include information on symptoms to watch for and when medication should be administered. Items such as diaper ointment, sunscreen, and insect repellent must be labeled with the child’s name as well as a parent’s signature on the container in order for GHA to administer the product. Any prescription drug or over the counter drug sent to the center must be in its original container and clearly labeled with your child’s name, the name of the drug, and directions for administration. Please put all medicine and dispensers in a Ziploc bag with your child’s name on the bag. Fever reducing/pain management over the counter medicine will not be given at the center to suppress a fever. You will need to provide the center with a new immunization “Blue Slip” each time your child is given an immunization or when the immunization form expires.

Will you assist with Potty Training?

Learning to use the toilet is an individual developmental process that is an important milestone in the life of the child (and the parents!). Professionals recommend that children be allowed to be active participants in developing the understanding of their bodies and how to use toilet facilities. GHA expects parents to initiate toilet learning with their child at the appropriate time – when the child is ready. GHA will assist the child as they are learning to use the toilet. During this transition, please communicate clearly and openly with the staff about the child’s progress. To support the child’s success, please send the child to the program in clothing that is appropriate for training. Understand that overalls, belts, or tight-fitting clothing may provide difficulties for the child and will hinder his/her progress.

What if my child has special needs?

Grove Hill Academy accepts and welcomes children with special needs. Along with coordinating referrals to the Alabama Early Intervention program or the Auburn Early Education Center and working with assigned specialists, Grove Hill will accommodate to the best of our ability to provide a safe and rewarding learning experience.

A child with allergies must have an Allergy Action Plan posted in a visible location in the classroom. If the allergy is food related, an Allergy Action Plan must also be posted in the kitchen area. All staff working in the classroom of child with allergies must review the Allergy Action Plan to ensure understanding of emergency procedures should the child have an allergic reaction. All allergic reactions must be documented with a Health Incident Form.

An Emergency Care Plan will be on file for any child or staff member with special health care needs (seizures, etc). A copy of the Emergency Care Plan must be kept in the classroom emergency binder. All staff working in the classroom must familiarize themselves with this plan, should an emergency arise. If necessary, staff will receive training regarding a child’s or staff member’s specific health care needs.

Do you offer a summer program?

During the summer there will be a program provided for our school age children to attend. This will include fun activities at the center and field trips for hands on experiences. There is a summer activity fee that pays for all summer activities except for certain field trips that cannot be included. The summer fee may change per year based on the costs of activities and changes of costs at venues.

What is your policy on Birthdays and Holidays?

Grove Hill Academy celebrates Valentine’s Day, Easter, Halloween, Thanksgiving, and Christmas. These celebrations may include special events, food, and special guests. Some other holiday celebrations (for example but not limited to; Hanukkah, Passover, All Saints Day, etc.) may be incorporated into learning experiences or world and cultural exploration in lesson plans. If you have religious beliefs that prohibit your child/children from participating in certain activities please bring it to the Administration’s attention.

Birthday celebrations are a special time in a child’s life. If you would like to bring in a special treat to celebrate your child’s special day please coordinate with your child’s lead teacher on what and when to bring the treat. Invitations to parties outside of the center will only be giving to all classmates and is to be opened with the child at home.

Who has access to the property and children at any given time?

Any person in the center who is not an owner, staff member, substitute, or subcontracted staff or volunteer who has had a record check and approval to be involved with child care shall not have unrestricted access to children for whom that person is not the parent, guardian or custodian.

Center staff will approach anyone who is on the property of the center without their knowledge to ask what their purpose is. If a staff member is unsure about the reason, the Director or Assistant Director to get approval for the person to be on site. If it becomes a dangerous situation, staff will follow the “Dangerous Adult” procedure. Non-agency persons who are on the property for other reasons such as maintenance, repairs, etc., will be monitored by a paid staff member and will not be allowed to interact with children on the premises.

The Director is not obligated to provide permission and must consult with their DHR licensing agent first.

All individuals who are visiting the center (i.e., someone who is not a parent or authorized pick-up person; or staff member) is required to sign in at the office before entering the center. The visitor is then required to sign out before leaving the building. Staff members should notify the Director and/or Assistant Director if expecting a visitor. There will be no visitors for employees during operation.

Please provide a copy of the custody agreement if parents are separated or divorced, that states who has custody and which (if both) parent can pick up the child. If any additional changes in custody are made then please provide an updated copy immediately. A parent must provide legal documentation to the Director or Assistant Director that a judge has signed into order the custody rights of said child. We WILL NOT go by any parent or guardian’s verbal requests.

How Safe is Grove Hill Academy?

Fire Drills and Severe Weather Drills are held monthly to ensure children are accustom to emergency evacuation and relocation procedures.


Grove Hill Academy follows and meets all standards for licensing by the fire department. Children will be evacuated immediately to the front of the parking lot, around the trees. Emergency plans are posted in classrooms and throughout the center.


We have double re-enforced cement walls throughout our classroom hallways to provide shelter for strong storms and tornados. All children will be moved into these hallways until given the all clear by the city.

Power and Water Failure

In hot or cold weather, the children will be kept as comfortable as possible. After 30 minutes of failure, and no assurance on how quickly power or water will return, parents will be notified to pick up their children. Grove Hill Academy cannot operate without water, due to Heath Department requirements. Grove Hill Academy, LLC. must maintain a certain degree of temperature in the building and rooms per DHR minimum standards.

Weather Closures

The Center will close for emergency weather conditions based on what Auburn City Schools decide. If Auburn City schools open at 10:00am, we will open at 10:00am. Check local TV and radio stations as well as websites for updates.

Do you offer transportation to and from school?

Grove Hill Academy will provide transportation from Auburn City schools if there are at least three children needing transportation from the school for the after school program in the Auburn, Alabama area. No transportation will be provided to and from a child’s home. It is Grove Hill Academy policy to provide safe and reliable transportation for children from school, on field trips, and during summer programs. The drive will not allow children to be released to parent/guardian during transportation of children. Children may only be released at Grove Hill Academy. Staffing, in addition to driver, may be required to meet child to staff ratio set by Alabama DHR minimum standards. Children are to be signed onto the van and from the van through the transportation report give by the Department of Human Resources. Children will be required to be properly seat belted and comply with all requirements for car and booster seats. Children must comply with all safety requirements including verbal directions given from the driver or staff. Any child who is written up for failure to comply with policy may be expelled from the transportation vehicle for the remainder of the school year; as well as any parent/center agreement for transportation for child will be null and void for the remainder of the school year. Any transportation provided by the parent/guardian is the sole responsibility of the parent or guardian.

Do you offer field trips?

Grove Hill Academy LLC offers a variety of experiences both at and away from the center. Field trips are a creative way to enrich a theme and expand the learning environment. The Director and/or Assistant Director must approve all field trips. Field trips require a parent to complete a “Field Trip Permission Form.” These forms can be obtained from the Director and/or Assistant Director. Parents must be notified at least one week before the planned field trip.

Why was my child's toy sent home?

Adults often become concerned when children’s play turns to violent themes or includes pretend use of weapons.  We recognize that children “play about” what they are thinking about. Children use play to work out the thoughts and emotions that are connected to scenarios that they do not fully understand. As well, we understand that many times, children’s violent play emerges from exposure to media that is not developmentally appropriate. GHA will redirect children when their play themes include violence and/or the use of weapons. More importantly we will strive to have conversations with children to better understand their play and communicate the ideals of peace, respect, and positive ways of solving problems. Toys should not be brought from home unless there is a special opportunities for sharing. Any toy that is brought that is of a violent nature (toy guns, movie themed toys) will be kept in the child’s cubbie and returned home. Competitive behavior is minimized in our programs. In young children, competition often increases negative behavior and decreases acceptance of others. Bullying is not considered acceptable behavior; all efforts will be made to guide children in finding appropriate ways to interact with others.

What if my child has food allergies?

The Center serves a morning snack afternoon snack to all children who are in attendance at the time of service. Lunch will be provided for all children, except for babies still taking a bottle or trying out new food plus bottle fed. Parents may choose to provide their children a lunch if they wish (tuition price do NOT change should you provide your own meal).

All of our provided meals strive to meet the Department of Human Services guidelines for nutritious, appropriate foods for young children. Our Menus, kitchen facilities, and cooking procedures also follow their guidelines. Our kitchen is inspected regularly by the Health Department. We welcome menu suggestions. However, we are NOT able to prepare separate meals for children based on their preferences. All children will be served the same meal, with the following exceptions.

►A child that is allergic or sensitive to a particular food. In this case, a physician’s note is required, which must state which food(s) are to be avoided. In those cases, the identified foods will not be served. Families must provide acceptable substitutions if desired. Please notify the Director or Assistant Director upon enrollment if this applies to your child.

If your child will not be eating the Center’s food, you may provide a meal from home. Please ensure that the meal is nutritious, and do not include foods that will cause problems in the classroom, such as candy, gum, sweets, or soda.

Infants are served whenever they are hungry. All other children eat their meals together with their classmates. Morning snack service starts about 8:30am, lunch starts about 11:00am and afternoon snack is served about 3:00pm. We will not “hold” meals for your child. If your child is not at the Center when a meal is serves, he/she will not receive that meal. Please make arrangements for your child to be fed prior to arrival if it is after meal service time. All menu changes will be posted on the “Parents Need to Know” board.

What are your hours of operation?

Grove Hill Academy is open Monday through Friday from 6:30 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.

Please note: Although the facility is open from 6:30 a.m. to 6:00 p.m., children may only allow attend a maximum of 10 hours daily. Leaving a child at the program past 10 hours will require an additional payment of $15 for that program day.

What is your holiday schedule?

Grove Hill Academy is closed the following holidays:

New Year’s Day                                  Memorial Day                         Independence Day

     Labor Day                               Thanksgiving (2 days)                        Christmas (24th, 25th, 26th)

Holidays are subject to change with prior notification from administration. Should a holiday fall on Saturday, we will be closed on Friday. If a holiday falls on Sunday, we will be closed on Monday.