March 26, 2020
When you enrolled at our school, you became part of our IvyCrest family. Our mission is to always take care of our own. Our leadership team has been working around the clock to ensure we are up to date with rapidly changing information and directives to ensure we are ready to safely re-open our school while balancing the roll out of distance learning. To say this is a challenging time is an understatement, but we are confident in the strength of our IvyCrest family, and know we will get through this together.
We understand that many of you are facing multifaceted challenges in the face of this global pandemic. Some have lost jobs, many have elderly family members in their homes, and some of you are on our front lines with no childcare. We understand that every family has a unique story and set of needs. We hear you and hope this email will give you some answers and the relief you are seeking during this very uncertain time.
Out of an abundance of caution, we are pushing back our date to receive children at our Fullerton campus to April 13th. We want to give our families and IvyCrest staff an additional week of social distancing as a precautionary measure and do our part to help "flatten the curve." Our goal is to get those who need childcare the help they need as soon as possible while complying with state and federal directives. Prior to April 13th, we will be sending out a memo detailing the preventative measures and guidelines we will be enlisting upon opening. This list includes but is not limited to: modified drop off and pick up procedures, no parents entering the school buildings or classrooms, checking children's temperatures prior to admission, encouraging frequent handwashing, and sanitizing the classrooms throughout the day. Our absolute number one priority is your child's safety.
For some of our families, we understand there is a lot of uncertainty surrounding your comfort level with regards to returning to school. Every family is unique and we respect that only you can decide what is best for your family. We just want you to know that we are here for you when you are ready to return. If you are not ready by April 13th, we will continue to offer distance learning to ensure your child still receives the same world class education IvyCrest is known to provide, just from the comfort of home. As requested previously, if you could please indicate if your child will be in attendance during the week of April 13th, we will have a better understanding of our staffing needs while adhering to state directives. Please use the emailed link for our Google Sheets sign-up form and sign up by Friday, April 3rd. Attendance for April 13 - 17, 2020
Many of you know that we are a family-owned school, and our fellow small business owners can understand and appreciate the delicate balance of meeting the financial needs of our families while still ensuring we will be fully staffed when we return on April 13th. Therefore, we have put the following plan into place effective immediately.
Children in our Early Childhood Program (Rooms 1 - 7): We understand that children in this program require close supervision and while distance learning is full of circle time, story time, Montessori lessons, live zoom instruction, songs, crafts, and art, it is not a replacement for full time care. Therefore, we will be crediting 50% of your tuition for the weeks we are temporarily closed due to the COVID crisis (including 100% AM/PM daycare, if applicable) for all children in this age group. We have also credited your child's lunches and School of the Arts classes for the weeks we are closed. Additionally, we are offering two more weeks of flexibility for families not quite ready to return. For those of you who are not ready to return on April 13th, we will offer you the same credit for April 13th - 30th. If your child does return between April 13th-30th, your account will be adjusted based on the first day of attendance (100% of tuition will begin on your child's first day of attendance). Rest assured, distance learning will be available from now until April 30th. All regular billing will resume on May 1st, 2020.
Children in our Elementary Program (Rooms 8 - 11): Our Montessori Teachers have taken our already robust curriculum and transformed it into a magnificent conglomeration of customized Montessori lessons, zoom presentations featuring small group lessons for direct instruction, recorded demonstrations, art projects, science experiments, journal entries, calendar, circle time, story time, practical life, and even virtual recess time! Teachers will hold regularly scheduled "virtual office hours" to field parent questions and offer any assistance you may require. This format does require our teachers to work full academic hours as we are still requiring lesson planning, lesson execution, and record planning. Additionally, please understand student participation is required effective March 30th to complete our curriculum and progress to the next grade level. Although our distance learning is already underway, we will be crediting families in our elementary program 50% of your tuition for the weeks we are temporarily closed due to the COVID crisis (including 100% AM/PM daycare, if applicable). We are also crediting school lunches and School of the Arts classes for the time we are closed. However, we do ask elementary students continue attendance either virtually or in class on a daily basis on or after April 13th to fulfill Department of Education attendance requirements. Distance learning will be available until April 30th.
Due to difficulties acquiring large quantities of food, we will be resuming school lunch effective May 4th. We would also request all families provide their own child's snacks until May 4th as well.
Many of you have asked about how to make tuition payments for April. Due to our scheduled Spring Break from March 23rd - 27th, our Accounting Department will be making the aforementioned adjustments to your ledger on March 30th and 31st. A new statement will be emailed to you on April 1st. During this unprecedented time, we understand how important it is to be flexible and understanding. We also know many of you are trying to limit outings during the "stay at home" order. Therefore, we are extending our tuition due date to Friday, April 3rd. We ask that you please either mail your tuition check or set up bill pay with your bank. Please refrain from dropping off checks at the school to help us maintain social distancing. Thank you.
While we are a small business, we have a big heart, and we sincerely miss seeing you everyday! Please stay safe and healthy. We all look forward to seeing you back at school soon. In the meantime, we hope your child enjoys seeing their teachers and friends even more often on Class Dojo this week!
The IvyCrest Board of Directors