Under provisions of the Manual of Requirements for Child Care Centers (N.J.A.C. 10:122), every licensed child care center in New Jersey must provide to parents of enrolled children written information on parent visitation rights, State licensing requirements, child abuse/neglect reporting requirements and other child care matters. The center must comply with this requirement by reproducing and distributing to parents this written statement, prepared by the Office of Licensing, Child Care & Youth Residential Licensing, in the Department of Children and Families (DCF). In keeping with this requirement, the center must secure every parent’s signature attesting to his/her receipt of the information.
Our center is required by the State Child Care Center Licensing law to be licensed by the Office of Licensing, Child Care & Youth Residential Licensing, in the Department of Children and Families (DCF). A copy of our current license must be posted in a prominent location at our center. Look for it when you’re in the center.
To be licensed, our center must comply with the Manual of Requirements for Child Care Centers (the official licensing regulations). The regulations cover such areas as : physical environment/life-safety; staff qualifications, supervision, and staff/child ratios; program activities and equipment; health, food and nutrition, rest and sleep requirements; parent/community participation; administrative and record keeping requirements; and others.
Our center must have on the premises a copy of the Manual of Requirements for Child Care Centers and make it available to interested parents for review. If you would like to review our copy, just ask any staff member. Parents may secure a copy of the Manual of Requirements by sending a check or money order for $5 made payable to the “Treasurer, State of New Jersey”, and mailing it to: NJ Department of Children and Families, Office of Licensing, Publication Fees, PO Box 657, Trenton, NJ 0846-0657.
We encourage parents to discuss with any questions or concerns about the policies and program of the center or the meaning, application or alleged violations of the Manual of Requirements for Child Care Centers. We will be happy to arrange a convenient opportunity for you to review and discuss these matters with us. If you suspect our center may be in violation of licensing requirements, you are entitled to report them to the Office of Licensing toll free at 1 (877) 667-9845. Of course, we would appreciate your bringing these to our attention too.
Our center must have a policy concerning the release of children to parents or people authorized by parents to be responsible for the child. Please discuss with us your plans for your child’s departure from the center.
Our center must have a policy about administering medicine and health care procedures and the management of communicable diseases. Please talk to us about these policies so we can work together to keep our children healthy.
Our center must have a policy concerning the expulsion of children at the center. Please review this policy so we can work together to keep your child in our center.
Parents are entitled to review the center’s copy of the Office of Licensing’s Inspection/Violation Reports on the center, which are issued after every State licensing inspection of our center. If there is a licensing complaint investigation, you are entitled to review the Office’s Complaint Investigation Summary Report, as well as any letters of enforcement or other actions taken against the center during the current licensing period. Let us know if you wish to review them and we will make them available for your review.
Our center must cooperate with all DCF inspections/investigations. DCF staff may interview both staff members and children.
Our center must post its written statement of philosophy on child discipline in a prominent location and make a copy available to parents upon request. We encourage you to review it and to discuss with us any questions you may have about it.
Our center must post a listing or diagram of those rooms and areas approved by the Office for the children’s use. Please talk to us if you have any questions about the center’s space.
Our center must offer parents of enrolled children ample opportunity to assist the center in complying with licensing requirements; and to participate in and observe the activities of the center. Parents wishing to participate in the activities or operations of the center should discuss their interest with the center director, who can advise them of what opportunities are available.
Parents of enrolled children may visit the center at any time without having to secure prior approval from the director or any staff member. Please feel free to do so when you can. We welcome visits from our parents.
Our center must inform parents in advance of every field trip, outing, or special event away from the center, and must obtain prior written consent from parents before taking a child on each such trip.
Our center is required to comply with the New Jersey Law Against Discrimination (LAD), P.L. 1945, c. 169 (N.J.S.A. 10:5-1 et seq), and the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), P.L. 101-336 (42 U.S.C. 12101 et seq). Anyone who believes the center is not in compliance with these laws may contact the Division on Civil Rights in the New Jersey Department of Law and Public Safety for information about filing an LAD claim at (609) 292-4605 (TTY users may dial 711 to reach the New Jersey Relay Operator and ask for (609) 292-7701), or may contact the United States Department of Justice for information about filing an ADA claim at (800) 514- 0301 (voice) or (800) 514-0383 (TTY).
Our center is required to periodically review the Department of Law and Public Safety (DLPS), Division of Consumer Affairs (DCA), unsafe children’s products list, make the list accessible to staff and parents, and ensure them that items on the list are not at the center. The list is available at www.state.nj.us/lps/ca/recall/recalls.htm. Internet access may be available at your local library. For more information call the DLPS, DCA, toll-free at 1 (800) 242-5846.
Anyone who has reasonable cause to believe that an enrolled child has been or is being subjected to any form of hitting, corporal punishment, abusive language, ridicule, harsh, humiliating or frightening treatment, or any other kind of child abuse, neglect, or exploitation by any adult, whether working at the center or not, is required by State law to report the concern immediately to the State Child Abuse Hotline, toll free at 1 (877) NJ ABUSE. Such reports may be made anonymously. Parents may secure information about child abuse and neglect by contacting: DCF, Office of Communications and Legislation at (609) 292-0422 or go to www.nj.gov/dcf and select Publications.
Each child may be released only to the child’s parent(s) or person(s) authorized by the parent(s) to take the child from the center and to assume responsibility for the child in an emergency if the parent(s) cannot be reached.
If a non-custodial parent has been denied access, or granted limited access to a child by a court order, the center shall secure documentation to that effect, maintain a copy on file, and comply with the terms of the court order.
If the parent(s) or person(s) authorized by the parent(s) fails to pick up a child at the time of the center’s daily closing, the center shall ensure that:
The child is supervised at all times.
Staff members attempt to contact the parent(s) or person(s) authorized by the parent(s); and
An hour or more after closing time, and provided that other arrangements for releasing the child to his/her parent(s) or person(s) authorized by the parent(s) have failed and the staff member(s) cannot continue to supervise the child at the center, the staff member shall call the 24- hour Child Abuse Hotline 1-877-NJ-ABUSE to seek assistance in caring for the child until the parent(s) or person(s) authorized by the child’s parent(s) is able to pick up the child.
If the parent(s) or person(s) authorized by the parent(s) appears to be physically and/or emotionally impaired to the extent that, in the judgment of the director and/or staff member, the child would be placed at risk of harm if released to such an individual, the center shall ensure that:
The child may not be released to such an impaired individual;
Staff members attempt to contact the child’s other parent or an alternative person(s) authorized by the parent(s); and
If the center is unable to make alternative arrangements, a staff member shall call the 24-hour Child Abuse Hotline 1-877-NJ-ABUSE to seek assistance in caring for the child.
It is our policy to promote the use of positive discipline; the process of teaching children how to behave appropriately. This system respects the rights of the individual child, the group, and the adult. Positive discipline is different from punishment. Punishment tells children what they should NOT do; positive discipline tells children what they should do. Punishment teaches fear, positive discipline teaches self-esteem.
Positive discipline may be used to intervene when necessary. Our staff will try to re-direct the child to a new activity to change the focus of the child’s behavior, provide individualized attention to help the child deal with a particular situation, and provide alternative activities and acceptable ways of releasing feelings. At times, the staff may use “time-out” by removing the child from the situation for a few moments (one minute for each year of age) so that the child can gain self-control. We will criticize a child’s behavior and not the child. We will respond to and reinforce positive behavior by acknowledging and praising it, providing reinforcement through rewards, and using encouragement and love.
At no time will any child be subjected to any type of corporal punishment, emotional punishment, neglect, abusive language, ridicule, or humiliation. Children will never be disciplined for sleep habits, toileting accidents, food consumption, or lack of participation in activities. At all times, a child’s age, emotional state, and past experiences will be considered in discipline matters.
Unfortunately, there are sometimes reasons we have to expel a child from our program either on a short term or permanent basis. We want you to know that we will do everything possible to work with the family of the child(ren) in order to prevent this policy from being enforced. The following are reasons we may have to expel or suspend a child from this center:
The child is at risk of causing serious injury to other children or him/herself.
Parent threatens physical or intimidating actions towards staff members.
Parents exhibits verbal abuse to staff in front of enrolled children.
Failure to pay/habitual lateness in payments.
Failure to complete required forms including the child’s immunization records.
Habitual tardiness when picking up your child. Verbal abuse to staff.
Failure of child to adjust after a reasonable amount of time.
Uncontrollable tantrums/angry outbursts.
Ongoing physical or verbal abuse to staff or other children.
Prior to expulsion, a parent will be called and correspondence will be sent home indicating what the problem is, and every effort will be made by both the center and the parent to correct the problem. If, after one or two weeks, depending on the risk to other children’s welfare or safety, behavior does not improve, and the center finds that they can no longer accommodate the child, the parent will be asked to remove him/her. The parent will be given a minimum of one week’s notice to find another center to provide care for this child.
If a child exhibits any of the following symptoms, he/she should not attend the center. If such symptoms occur at the center, the child will be removed from the group, and you will be called to take him/her home.
Severe pain or discomfort
Episodes of acute vomiting
Elevated oral temperate of 101.5 degrees Fahrenheit
Sore throat or severe coughing
Yellow eyes or jaundice skin
Red eyes with discharge
Infected, untreated skin patches
Difficult or rapid breathing
Skin lesions that are weeping or bleeding
Skin rashes lasting longer than 24 hours
Visibly enlarged lymph nodes
Blood in urine
Once the child is symptom–free, or has a doctor’s note stating that he/she no longer poses a serious health risk to himself/herself or others, he/she may return to the cente
A child who contracts any of the following diseases may not return to the center without a physician’s note stating that the child presents no risk to himself/herself or others:
* Reportable diseases that will be reported to the health department by the center.
** Note: If your child has chicken pox, a doctor’s note is required for re-admitting the child to the center. A note from the parent is required, stating either that at least six days have elapsed since the onset of the rash, or that all sores have dried and crusted.
If your child is exposed to any excludable disease at the center, you will be notified in writing.