2022-2023 School Day Expectations & Parent Handbook



Daily Schedule

LevelSchool Schedule
Toddler8:00am -3:30pm
K38:30am -11:30am
K4-6th Grade8:30am – 3:30 pm
Adolescent Program8:10am – 3:30pm
2022-2023 school schedule

ARRIVALS

School Start Time

School starts promptly at 8:30 am (8:10 am for AP). In a Montessori environment, students need three hours of open, uninterrupted time to choose independent work, become deeply engaged, and repeat this work to their satisfaction; therefore, your children must arrive at school on time. Being five or ten minutes late may seem like a minor issue, but it disrupts the rhythm and flow of the entire Montessori classroom. If your child needs to arrive before 8:15 am, they will need to join the Before School program or participate in the breakfast program that begins at 8:00 am.

Since Toddlers’ school day begins at 8:00 am, and they require a consistent schedule, late arrivals are strongly discouraged. Toddler arrivals after 8:30 am will not be admitted without special permission from the Directress.

Parking

Because our parking lot is so busy, patience and caution are required. Please drive slowly and be very careful when entering and exiting the parking lot. There is also street parking on 18th St. and Juneau Ave.

Parking Tips

  • Parking Maps are available on the website.
  • Arrive early in winter! Snow build-up limits parking spaces and narrows the street. Parking during the winter months will take extra patience and time. Plus, you will need extra time to help your child remove winter attire once in the building.

Morning Drop-Off

All Toddlers and Children’s House (K3-K5) students must be walked into the building during morning drop-off. This means that parents will need to park in the parking lot or on the street to bring their students to their classrooms, where they will sign them in with their teachers.

Lower Elementary (grades 1-3), Upper Elementary (grades 4-6), and Adolescent (grades 7-8) students should be dropped off on 17th Street. by the playground. A staff person will greet them and ensure they enter the building safely. Please do not park on 17th street. This is for drop-off only.

Morning drop-off and afternoon pickup are very busy times for HCS. To keep everyone safe and on time, we have set the following rules:

General Rules

  • If you are escorting your child into the building, use the 18th street main entrance. Park in the parking lot, on 18th street, Highland Ave., or Juneau Ave.
  • Do not park on or in front of the loading dock located just south of the Main Entrance on 18th St.
  • Handicapped Spaces are limited; please do not use these spaces if you don’t rightfully have permission to do so.

Gate Hours

The East Gate 17th Street: Open and staffed mornings from 8:05 am to 8:35 am for the car drop offline. If you are late for drop-off, proceed to the main entrance on 18th street.

DISMISSALS

Children’s House through Adolescent program can be picked up from inside the building beginning at 3:30 pm. 

Pick-up Time

Pick-up time for 3-year-old children is 11:30 am unless your child is enrolled in the CHECK program. The all-school pick-up for students is at 3:30 pm unless your child is in the Afterschool program. Students in K4-8th grade should be picked up no earlier than 15 minutes before dismissal unless an excuse is provided to school staff at the time of pickup. Picking your child up early may impact their attendance record.

If your student is missing school due to frequent early pick-ups, you may be contacted by the School Social Worker and a conference may be scheduled to discuss your child’s attendance record and problem-solve.

Absences

Excused Absences

It is your responsibility to contact the school as early as possible if your child is going to be absent. Please provide us with whatever information concerning the absence is available at that time. If your child is not in school and you have not called in, the school will contact you within two hours of the beginning of the school day.

For all Children’s House, Elementary, and Adolescent students, a student absence becomes excused when a written statement by the parent/guardian is submitted to the school. The written excuse must be presented within forty-eight (48) hours after the student’s return to school or the absence is considered truancy.

The following are excused absences. All other absences are truancies.

  • Personal illness
  • COVID-19 quarantine and isolation
  • Funerals
  • Required legal appearances
  • Designated religious holidays
  • Medical or dental appointments
  • Family emergencies – student absences that contribute to health, safety, or financial well-being of the family
  • Educationally beneficial activities approved by the Executive Director

Parent-excused absences – Parents or guardians may excuse an absence by submitting written notification to the school for any or no reason prior to the student’s absence. A student may be excused for up to ten (10) days per year under this provision.

Excused Absence Limit

When your student has reached the 10-day excused absence limit, all further absences will be recorded as unexcused absences (except for absences reviewed and approved by the Executive Director due to the nature of the circumstances) and the absence protocol will be as follows:

  • 0 to 4 Unexcused Absences: Calls will be made to the student’s parent/guardian by the Classroom Teacher, School Secretary, and/or School Social Worker to inform parent of attendance policy and problem-solve.
  • 5 Unexcused Absences: A Habitual truancy letter will be sent home notifying the parent/guardian that their student has 5 unexcused absences and a meeting will be scheduled with the School Social Worker to discuss attendance support.
  • 8 Unexcused Absences: Another letter will be sent home with student’s attendance record, notifying parent/guardian that student has reached 8 unexcused absences.
  • 12-15 Unexcused Absences: A letter will be sent home and/or the parent/guardian will be contacted via phone call to schedule a second meeting with the School Social Worker and the Classroom Teacher to further discuss attendance and create an Attendance Support Plan.
  • 15 + Days Missed: When a student’s attendance reaches this point, the student’s case may be referred to the Truancy Abatement Program or the District Attorney’s office for further action.

School Nutrition

Breakfast Club

Our school participates in the MPS Universal Free Breakfast program. Breakfast from this program will be served in the gym free of charge to all children who want it from 8:00-8:15. We will not serve a full breakfast after this time, so please be sure your child has breakfast if they are going to be arriving after 8:15.

Snacks

In addition to breakfast, parents are invited to send a healthy morning snack for their child. Parents who would like to provide snacks for their class should reach out to their classroom teacher for snack requests (fruits, vegetables, crackers, etc.).

Lunch Program

Nutrition is an everyday part of our program. All children must inform their teacher upon arrival in the morning if they are participating in the hot lunch program for that day. If your child is going to be tardy, please call the school before 8:30 am to order a meal. If you do not notify the school before that time, you will be required to bring a cold lunch for your child. All meals provided by HCS follow USDA guidelines. Lunch is served in the classroom. Menus are provided to cover the four primary food groups, and varieties of food are served to enhance and develop a broad sense of taste. Our hot lunch program is currently provided through a contract with Milwaukee Public Schools. A monthly menu is available in the school office and posted outside the kitchen and the toddler program’s classroom door.

We encourage parents who send lunch with their children to only have nutritional food items in their lunch each day. Please try to eliminate junk food from your child’s diet. We ask that if you are going to send a snack or treat to school with your child that it not be sweets, candy or junk food. Foods that are overly sweetened or salted might not be served.

Toddler Lunch Fees

Toddlers are served well-balanced nutritious items for breakfast, as well as morning and afternoon snacks each day. Parents are encouraged to bring a healthy bag lunch for their toddlers. However, participation in the hot lunch program is available if needed. The cost of a daily lunch is $4.50. Because toddlers are not yet considered MPS students, only those receiving Wisconsin Shares funding are eligible to receive lunch at no charge.

Health Policy

When To Keep Children Home

Children who are sick require the special attention that being at home provides. Children cannot be permitted at school with any of the following:

  • Fever of 100 degrees Fahrenheit or higher
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea – within the previous 24-hour period
  • Draining rash
  • Eye discharge or pink eye
  • Sore throat
  • Communicable diseases, such as head lice, ringworm, etc., which require treatment (see Main Office for exact details and processes)

When Illness Occurs at School

Children who are not well enough to go outside for playtime are not well enough to come to school. If illness occurs while your child is at school, the office staff will notify you. Your child will be sent to the administrative office and cared for by the administrative staff until he or she is picked up. You are responsible for arranging for or picking up your child from school as soon as possible. Children may return to school when:

  • Symptoms are decreasing
  • There is no discharge from rash
  • They have a fever of less than 100 degrees (without medication) for 24 hours
  • They have had no vomiting or diarrhea for 24 hours
  • They can tolerate full activities, including recess

Communicable Disease Policy

In the event of communicable disease, also known as infectious diseases or transmissible diseases, notices will be sent home with children who have been exposed.  A doctor’s release may be requested upon the return of students who were absent due to a communicable disease and/or head louse.  All communicable diseases will be posted on the bulletin board within the classroom for parents’ review.

22-23 COVID Policies (to Be Determined by BOD 8-8-22)

Parent Handbook