Dear WDCC Pre-school & Toddler Families,
As most of you will have already heard, the Province announced yesterday that child care centres can open as early as this Friday. As an organization, we will be taking a measured approach to our re-opening in order to help keep the children, families and educators, that we value so much, as safe as possible.
At this point we do know that opening is contingent upon additional factors which still require specific direction from Hamilton Public Health and the HWDSB which haven’t been provided yet. So we have not set a re-opening date and it will not be as early as next week.
As an organization we have done scenario planning and are committed to a slow and gradual reopening that will ensure the safety and quality of programming to our best ability. We are taking into consideration the specific needs of our youngest learners, and how 3 months of time away from our programs may impact their ability to return to the program as they were before.
We also need to give our families a full picture of what that program, it’s hours, and the new arrival, screening and pickup procedures will look like so that you can make informed decisions for your choice of care.
We need to wait on further direction and approvals from the Province/City to help us determine opening timelines and program layout and organization of the now reduced capacity that would be availabile for our families. We also need to wait on permissions from the Hamilton Wentworth District School Boards since we lease their facilities. All groups are working towards re-opening guidelines and permissions and will let us know as soon as they can.
Since the number of children we can serve will be affected, we will use our established and necessary priority protocol, plus the flexibility that our families have indicated in their Wait List Re-registrations, as well as direction from the authorities, to determine the priority of placement offers for available space in the program.
Families will not be charged for spaces not offered or accepted temporarily. We will however guarantee that your original space will be available to claim (as capacity increases) until you voluntarily withdraw from the program, or until 15 days after our full operational capacity is achieved.
Once we have a better understanding of next steps, timing, and starting capacity; we will be in contact with each registered family individually with more information. We will not be accepting any new Wait List requests at this time.
As always, the wellbeing of children is foremost in our minds, and when we open, we will be providing safe, caring, nurturing, joyful places. We will continue to follow health and safety protocols while providing welcoming environments where children’s laughter and learning are present throughout the day.
Thank you everyone for your patience.
Shelley Bradaric, RECE, BASc (Hons)
Waterdown District Children’s Centre and Camp Waterdown