Frequently Asked Questions
What is the difference between a daycare and preschool?
A daycare, or childcare center is designed to provide safe care for your child, while a preschool is intended to stimulate learning, creativity, and essential skill development to prepare your child for the classroom experience. Age is also a factor in the classification. A Child’s Academy is structured like a daycare for our toddlers and one’s, working on social skills and cognitive skills. Our 2 year old class is a hybrid of daycare and preschool and our 3 and 4 year old classes are designed like a preschool with our focus on kindergarten readiness. The foundation we create for our preschoolers has allowed us to score the highest for the kindergarten readiness testing in Alachua County.
How do I determine which school will be best to educate my child and prepare him/her for kindergarten?
You first need to understand your goals for your child’s education. You should then visit several preschools to view the interactions and meet with staff in person. Look for a school that has been in business for awhile to ensure both its stability and educational experience. You should also ask to speak with parents of current students. To help parents with this difficult decision, we have prepared a guide that outlines the questions you should be asking. Click here for your free copy.
At what age should my child enroll in preschool?
Most children begin preschool at the age of three, but ultimately, the best answer is based on your child’s readiness, which an educator you trust or we can help to determine.
What type of licensing and accreditation do you have?
A Child’s Academy has earned the Florida Department of Child & Families’ Gold Seal Quality Care certification and the prestigious APPLE (Accredited Professional Preschool Learning Environment) certification. The combination of these two certifications reflects our commitment to delivering an exceptional experience for your child. In many cases, our own standards exceed those required for certification!
What is your educational philosophy?
Our goal is to provide a loving, happy place for young children to learn and grow as we bridge the gap from home to school, in a Christian-based environment, Our staff supports a positive self-image in each child while building social skills in a scholastic setting.
What is your children-to-teacher ratio?
Our children-to-teacher ratio averages 4-to-1 for infants and up for older ages. That figure can vary slightly from day to day (for every center if they tell you otherwise please take caution), depending on those children who are absent, but we maintain the staff to ensure a maximum of 4-to-1 for infants and up for older ages, and always keep our ratio’s at the lowest in Gainesville and Alachua County Preschools.
On average, how long have your teachers been teaching?
We take education seriously, so we employ only experienced educators. Our teachers have an average of 8 years of classroom teaching experience.
What is your staff turnover rate?
5%. Our turnover rate is lower than the average because we create a positive environment not only for our children, but also for our staff.
How many staff members CPR and first aid certified?
We require that every member of our staff maintain a current certification in both CPR and first aid, even though the state dictates that only one person must have these credentials.
Are children of different ages grouped together?
No. For the safety and comfort of your child, we group children according to their age. In this way, we can guarantee age-appropriate activities and play.
Do you welcome parent involvement? Can I stop by unannounced?
The answer to both is a resounding, “YES!” Our school is a community that embraces the whole family. We host events throughout the year, including picnics and performances in our auditorium, to encourage families to be involved in their child’s experience. And, if you’d like to get an inside look at your child at play or in the classroom, you can view the video monitor in our office.
What types of activities do you offer for infants and toddlers?
We provide age-appropriate activities, both indoors and outdoors, to stimulate the minds of infants and toddlers, and to promote motor and social skill development. For more information about specific activities, click here for our Infants, Toddlers, and Two-Year-Olds Programs.
What will my child be learning in your preschool?
We introduce the fundamentals of Arithmetic, Art, Reading, Music, and Science, as well as enrichment programs for Computers, Spanish, and Gymnastics, in a Christian-based environment. Click here for more details about our acclaimed preschool curriculum.
How often do you clean the rooms and toys?
All of our facilities (including toys) are cleaned at least once a day. The infant room is cleaned twice a day, and the changing tables are disinfected after each diaper change.
What is your policy regarding sick children?
In order to keep our children and their families, and our staff, as healthy as possible, we require that any child with a fever, vomiting, diarrhea, or contagious disease be kept at home.
How large is your playground?
We have four spacious, well-equipped playgrounds, one for each age group, so that children are only exposed to age-appropriate activities and equipment. Each playground is fenced in for security.
How do you communicate with parents?
The parents of infants receive a daily journal that documents feedings, naps, and other important notes. Parents of other youngsters get regular updates from teachers regarding their child’s progress, and we invite parents to speak with our staff at any time. In addition, we provide a monthly enewsletter to share news, event information, and other notes with our parent community.
Do you video monitor classrooms?
We have a video monitor in every classroom so that we see all activities, and parents can view their children from our office without interrupting the classroom. While some facilities provide online access to video monitoring, we strictly prohibit this practice because it is not secure. Some states have recognized the potential threat from hackers and predators, and enacted legislation to prevent online video monitoring. Although Florida has not yet reacted with a law prohibiting it, we believe this step is a necessary measure.
What if someone other than my spouse/partner or me has to pick up my child?
In order to protect your child, we require that you provide the names of any individual who has permission to pick up your child. We require advance notice from you when someone other than a family member will be picking up your child and will check identification. If we have any questions or concerns, we ask that you are available via cell phone to provide confirmation.
What security measures are in place to protect my child?
Your child’s safety and your peace of mind are of the utmost concern at A Child’s Academy. Our entire facility is fenced in and the outside entrance is monitored throughout the day. All visitors must register in our office, and we also maintain video monitoring in every classroom and playground.
Do you provide meals and snacks?
Yes! In fact, we maintain a commercial kitchen and a full-time cook so that we can prepare and serve nutritious, home-cooked meals and snacks for children. Our weekly menus are posted here on our website.
Can I get a daily record of my child’s experiences?
Yes. This is a standard practice for the infants in our care, but we also extend the courtesy to any parent who requests such notes. We understand that you need to be part of your child’s experience, even when you can’t physically be there. Our goal is to involve you as much as possible in the day-to-day development.
What are your rates?
We do not post our rates but are happy to email you. Please contact us and let us know the program you are interested in.
What hours are you open?
We are open Monday through Friday, from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m.
What is your late policy?
How do you handle holidays?
What about our vacations?
Do you offer care outside your regular hours?
Still have more questions about A Child’s Academy?
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Why our Parents Love ACA:
Debra & Jamie Hope, Gainesville, FL