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Frequently Asked Questions – All FAQs

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What safety and security precautions do you have in place?

Foundations is a locked facility with entrance only via the front door using a unique pass code for each family. Guests are admitted by ringing the bell for assistance. All of our classes are located behind the front desk, which is sectioned off with locked gates accessible only through the finger print identification check-in system. In the event that an alternate person who is not registered in our system needs to pick up a child, we require a picture ID and that person must be on the approved list submitted by the child’s parents. All playground gates and outside doors are locked.

Do you perform background checks on all employees?

Yes, all employees are required to submit to a criminal background check through a Georgia Police Department. No employee is allowed to begin work until this check has been completed and the individual is cleared.

How often do you sanitize and clean your toys and rooms?

In our younger classrooms, toys are sanitized both at nap time as well as in the evening with a bleach water solution. If a child puts a toy in their mouth, that toy is removed from the play area until it can be sanitized. In our older classrooms, toys are sanitized in the evenings.   Tables are sanitized before and after meals, and changing tables are sanitized immediately after use. Tile floors are mopped twice a day, including the bathroom.  Carpets are vacuumed each night. A cleaning crew cleans after close each night to remove trash, wipe down surfaces, vacuum, mop, and clean all common areas.

How do you handle food allergies or special dietary needs?

Due to the numerous children at the school with various food allergies, we must limit the types of food that are brought in by parents solely to those that are medically necessary. Parents need to provide a physicians note stating that a child is allergic to a food or that it is medically necessary for another reason in order to bring a food substitution. Foundations has a daily vegetarian lunch option available, as well as soy and organic milk.

What is your illness policy?

Because certain symptoms could be signs of infectious or communicable diseases, children will not be allowed to attend if they have had any of the following symptoms within 24 hours of check-in, including but not limited to fever of 100º or more, vomiting, diarrhea, unexplainable rash, pinkeye or discharge from the eyes, head lice or sore throat. In the event that a child shows any of the above symptoms while they are at school, parents will be contacted and asked to pick up the child.

What qualifications do your teachers have?

We feel that our teachers are a direct representation of the school, so we put a lot of care and time into selecting and training new candidates. Almost 80% of our teachers either have a degree or are currently in a degree program and on average our teachers have over 10 years experience in working with children.  Teachers enter Foundations as a substitute and are evaluated with several age groups by Mentor teachers, admin, and parents before being considered for a full time teaching position

How can I communicate with my child’s teachers?

Each of our teachers has an email address as well as a classroom email address.  Teachers are given lesson planning time during the day and they generally check emails at that point.  Our teachers are also available for short discussions at drop off and pick-up times as well.

Is your owner/director on site?

The owners of Foundations for the Future are a mother/daughter team, Laurie Massaglia and Lynn McKinnon. They are committed to the best possible standards for the school and work on-site daily.  They are always available should any issues arise that require their attention.  In addition to our owners on-site, we also have a full administrative staff consisting of an Operations Director, Assistant Operations Director, Business Director, Curriculum Director, and Admissions Director. We place a great importance on having excellent customer service and have staffed the school to provide that for our families.

What is included in tuition?

Tuition at Foundations includes low teacher to child ratios in each classroom, meals and snacks and two extra-curricular specialist taught classes per week – Art and Spanish.  It also includes beneficial parent services, like our bi-annual Parent/Teacher Conferences and family friendly events.

Do the children go outside every day?

Yes, weather permitting; children go outside a couple of times per day.   We feel that it is important for children to get outside for fresh air and physical activity so outside time is an integral part of our day, and we strive to make the outside an extension of the classroom and incorporate learning into playtime. We have large covered play areas on both our toddler and preschool playgrounds so that children still have the opportunity to go out even if it is raining (as long as it is safe to do so).

Is there a curriculum in all the classes?

Yes, we use a curriculum called Creative Curriculum for infants through Pre-kindergarten. This curriculum gives our teachers a guide in planning appropriate lessons and activities for their class. We also have a Curriculum Director who oversees the implementation of the goals and objectives in the curriculum.

Can I visit my child during the day?

Yes, we have an open door policy, so you can visit your child any time during the school day.

How can I determine if my child is learning what he/she needs to be learning?

We hold parent/teacher conferences twice a year in every classroom to track your child’s developmental progress and to review your child’s portfolio. Conferences are targeted to the areas that you would like to know more about, and they are generally held in October and May.

Does my child have to be potty trained to move to the next classroom?

No, potty training is a natural development that cannot be rushed as children must be intrinsically motivated to be self-sufficient on the potty. Rushing this process can cause children to refuse to go potty even when they know how, so we do everything we can to keep this process neutral and avoid the repercussions of power struggles. We respect you and your child and realize this is a developmental skill that cannot be determined by age. Therefore, it is not a determining factor in admitting your child into a classroom.

What are the school’s hours of operation and when are you closed during the year?

Foundations is open from 6:30am – 6:30pm Monday – Friday. We are closed on the following days: Labor Day, Columbus Day, Thanksgiving and the day after, Christmas Eve, MLK Day, President’s Day, Memorial Day, Independence Day.

Do you offer any extracurricular activities during the school day?

We have several extracurricular classes that can be incorporated into your child’s school day. Gymnastics, Ballet & Tap and Martial Arts are offered in our gymnasium facility and are scheduled in age appropriate groups. We also offer Cooking class, Gymnastics, Dance, Martial Arts, Fine Arts, Little Kickers and Photo/Scrapbook program. These classes can all be accommodated before 2:30pm, so even half day students can enroll.

What is the school’s philosophy and methodology?

We use innovative education practices to create an environment in which children’s strengths and unique learning styles are supported. We teach children to take charge of their learning – to be thinkers, challengers and wonderers. We don’t teach to the test. We teach to learn. We want the children to be able to understand the concepts behind the facts. How the children got to the answer can be just as important as the answer itself. We also incorporate movement all throughout the day because we believe that exercise boosts brain power. We don’t confine children to rows of desks; we allow them to create their own workspace and spread out as is comfortable for them because when children are comfortable they are more apt to be involved in the learning process. We don’t know what new things children will have to learn in the future, but we do know that they will need to be competent problem solvers. We believe that the world’s challenges can be solved with openness, inspiration, innovation, invention and entrepreneurialism.

What is the difference between Foundations Elementary program and a public school or other private school in the area?

There are several aspects of the Foundations Elementary program that make it different than a traditional public school or other private schools in the  area.  The first is that we have lower teacher to child ratios than most other area schools.  We work in ability level groups that are typically one teacher to 10 children, which enables us to have more individual interaction with the children and tailor the lessons to the group’s specific level of learning and learning style. The second reason we are different than area schools is that we present standards and objectives in a way that is based on the interests of the children to fully engage them in the learning process.  Traditional education presents the children will pre-planned lessons that are not related from subject to subject and don’t take the children’s interest into account. We start our planning by asking the children what topics interest then and then build in the standards and objectives into those topics.

Why don’t other schools do what Foundations does?

Other schools don’t use the same approach as Foundations because it requires a high level of flexibility and innovation from the teachers. An institutional setting needs controls and stringent guidelines so that they can measure and compare on a repetitive basis. Our school approach requires much more teacher time per child, hence our 1-10 ratio where other schools are twice that or more. Low ratios are not all it takes though, brain science points which back up this method have been known for years, but currently the standard school systems, both public and private do not have a method for switching over to integrated teaching. It is a totally opposite method to what they have chosen which is totally segregated by subject type so that one teacher can have a specialty and replicate his curriculum for all students. Integrated teachers must be able to apply the educational objectives to real life subjects of interest and interweave the teaching.

What results do you typically see in the children who attend Foundations?

By the end of their first year at Foundations, children typically learn to be out-of-the-box thinkers and problem solvers with a passion for learning and a true understanding of concepts learned – not memorization of test answers. Typically our children are happy and well adjusted with positive self confidence and leadership skills. Of course these are all things that you can observe when interacting with the children, but they also perform exceptionally well on standardized testing. On average, our children have been performing at one grade level above their age level with many performing several grade levels above in some subjects.

Maslow's Theory is for Kids Too

How does Maslow’s Theory apply to children?  Essentially if our shcool environment does not feel comfortable, safe and give our children positive social experiences, they may not learn and grow at their maximum potential. 

maslow

Adapted from “Maslow’s Heirarchy of Needs”
”  Read About Maslow’s Needs Theory

 “Any deficiency in these needs can handicap a child, hindering performance at home, at school and in adult life…. Children often have a constant worry about their safety and security . Finally, when all other needs have been satisfied, the quest for self-actualization begins.”