Sarah’s Home Daycare

A Home Away From Home

Sarah's Home Daycare Policies

Dear Parents


Welcome to Sarah’s Home Daycare in Newmarket, Ontario. My Name is Sarah Huels. I am a mother of one, and own and operate Sarah’s Home Daycare. This handbook outlines the policies and procedures under which I provide childcare services. Please read carefully. Feel free to discuss with me any questions you may have about any of the policies and procedures.


Purpose and Philosophy


My goal for Sarah’s Home Daycare is to provide a “Home Away From Home” for all children in my care. Sarah’s Home Daycare mission: To be a place where kids love to spend time and a place where parents feel great about leaving their child while they are at work.


I am dedicated to creating a warm and nurturing atmosphere that allows children to develop at their own unique rate. Children need to feel safe and confident in order to learn and grow. At Sarah’s Home Daycare I work towards cultivating a positive, fun environment by treating each child with respect and providing lots of loving individual attention.


Sarah’s Home Daycare encourages developmental growth in the areas of intellectual, social, physical, and emotional skills, through a wide assortment of group activities, individual play, and quiet periods. We have a great selection of toys and learning materials that let children develop confidence in their abilities explore, learn, make things, and have plain old fun! Programs include age appropriate activities and I like to incorporate specific interests of the children into our plans.


I believe that an effective daycare works as a partnership between parents and the childcare provider. Parents are encouraged to make suggestions and comments. Parent visits are welcome at anytime. I look forward to working together to provide your child with the best care possible at Sarah’s Home Daycare.


Hours of Operation


Sarah’s Home Daycare is open from 7:00 am until 6:00 pm, Monday to Friday.


“Your specific day(s) of care will be outlined in your contract and rate agreement. Any hours outside of these hours can be discussed at any time.


I require two-weeks notice if you need to change your enrollment hours. I also reserve the right to terminate if the new hours will not work well for my childcare business.”


I offer both full-time and part-time care.


I have a busy family schedule after 6:00 pm so I ask that you pick up your child promptly at the 6:00 pm pick up time. Recognizing that sometimes things “happen”, early drop off or later pick up can be arranged ahead of time if  absolutely necessary. There will be a $10.00 per hour charge for early arrival or late pick up without previous arrangement. Your cooperation in this matter will be greatly appreciated.


Enrollment Policies


I require at least one meeting with parents before we choose to work together. You are welcome to bring your child. Your child will have an opportunity to meet me and possibly other children in the daycare. Parents also have the opportunity to take a look around the daycare and ask any questions regarding my services.


Prior to your child’s first day, there are several forms that parents must fill out, sign, and deliver to me before I can take responsibility for caring for your child. No exceptions. The information on these forms will allow me to provide the best care possible for your child. The forms are as follows:


The Policy Handbook

Contract and Rate Agreement

Medical Information Sheet (includes child pickup authorization)

Administration of Medication Form

Child Profile and Information Sheet

Emergency Information form

Consent for emergency treatment and transportation


Please keep me informed of any change in addresses, telephone numbers, and other pertinent information listed on any/all the above forms. If you have any questions regarding the completion of these forms, please feel free to ask


Age Grouping and Size


Sarah’s Daycare provides childcare services for children up to 5 years old.


The total number of children I will welcome into the daycare at anytime will be 5 including my own child. I am choosing to keep the number lower than the allowable max because part of my philosophy is to provide “home-like” care


Security Deposit


A two-week security deposit is due upon your child’s admission into childcare. The deposit will be credited towards your last two weeks of childcare at Sarah’s Home Daycare.


Note that your rates may be higher when you leave Sarah’s Home Daycare than when you initially enrolled, so you may still owe an undetermined amount when you leave my services. The security deposit protects me from unexpected family departures from childcare or non-payment of fees.


Rates/Payment schedules


Full-Time                                         $38/day   $190/week


Part-time(Less than 4 hours)           $ 28/day


Your specific rates will be outlined in your Contract and Rate Agreement. Payment is due each Friday by pick up time unless prior arrangements are agreed upon. Without prior agreement there will be a $10/day late charge for each day the payment is late


Payment will be accepted in cash or by cheque (Payable to: Sarah Huels)


Parents are responsible to pay all fees associated with a cheque returned to me as NSF (non-sufficient funds). I will also require cash payment from this point forward. I reserve the right to terminate care for your child immediately if payment of fee is in arrears. Your security deposit will be used to cover any outstanding amount.


Once you have contracted childcare services from Sarah’s Home Daycare a space has been reserved for your child that can not be filled on a short-term basis. Parents are required to pay the full fee weekly whether or not your child is in attendance. This will ensure that your child’s spot is held at our daycare.


I will review fees on an annual basis. There may be a fair price increase at annual contract renewal time. .


I will provide each family with a detailed tax receipt at the end of each tax year. Receipts will be prepared in January each year or when services are terminated. You may request a statement of account at any time.




Based on a calendar year, I will be taking 4 weeks holidays for which payment is not due. I will provide minimum 4 weeks notice to parents to accommodate my vacation time when the daycare will be closed. Parents are responsible to find alternate childcare. You are welcome to plan your holidays around mine for sake of childcare ease.


I ask that all parents provide 2 weeks notice prior to the time you want to take off for holidays.  If you choose to take a vacation at a different time from mine, regular weekly fees are still due as Sarah’s Home Daycare will be open for business. Payment of fees will hold your child’s space.


My usual holiday times are roughly around the first week of February, first week of July, and first two weeks of August.


Trial Period/Termination Policies


The first two weeks of enrollment are probationary for everyone. During this period parents or caregiver may terminate the childcare agreement with 24 hours notice. Fees for the full two weeks will be due from parent.


After this probationary period, either party may terminate the childcare agreement by giving two weeks written notice. If the two weeks written notice is not provided by the parent, fees for this time are still required. The Security Deposit (any fee increases will be payable) will be applied at this time.


I reserve the right to terminate this contract without notice in the event of (but not solely limited to): The parent fails to comply with the policies set forth in the policy handbook or childcare agreement, The parent is verbally abusive/threatening/disrespectful to the caregiver or other children, The parent or child is being destructive and/or violent,, my ability to meet the child’s needs without additional staff in the daycare or, in the case of delinquent fees. Your security deposit will be refunded (exception - delinquent fees).


Sarah’s Home Daycare will be closed on all statutory holidays. Payment is still required for these days.


Parent Participation/ Communication


Open communication with all families using my childcare services is very important to me. I welcome any questions, concerns or discussions of any kind. The way I see it, we are working together to ensure your child gets the best care possible. Daily reports of child’s activities, meals, temperament, rest schedule etc. will be posted at pick up time.  Sensitive issues will be discussed in private outside of regular childcare hours either by telephone, email, or meeting. Daily Schedules. Program plans, meal plans, events will be posted on our bulletin board and on our website.


Your phone calls are welcome at any time. I may be outside with the children or setting up an activity inside. If I do not answer the phone please leave a message on my voicemail and I will call you back as soon as possible. The best time to call during the day is early afternoon during naptime.


Schedule and Programming


Infants, toddlers and young children do well with a structured schedule that still allows for flexibility. Our basic daily schedule outlines the core activities of any given day, play time, meal time, nap time, outdoor activities etc.


Part of my goal for Sarah’s Home Daycare is to provide a safe, loving, active, home-style atmosphere that allows children the confidence and courage to learn, play, develop social skills, and have fun.


Activities are age appropriate and designed to enhance children in all areas of learning. Free play, daily walks, reading, singing, music, arts and crafts, outdoor play, educational TV/videos are just a few of the activities we will do. Special themes and programs will be planned and posted on our bulletin board and website. Programs will revolve around such things as the seasons, holidays, specific interests of children etc. We will celebrate holidays. If there are any holidays that are important to your family please let me know and I will include them as well. 


Our playroom is bright and cozy. We have lots of toys which rotate from the supply room on a regular basis to keep interest alive. Our backyard is a good size for play. There is currently a small climbing structure, sand and water table, and a sand box. We also have a small wading pool and slide in the summer. There is a park within an easy walking distance from our house and the neighbourhood itself is kid friendly. 

See Schedule














I do allow a limited amount of television viewing.  We may watch an appropriate movie or program on the occasional rainy or snowy day if we are not able to go outside. I like to use stations such as TVO, CBC or PBS. These stations have educational shows, which are suitable for all ages.


Arrivals and Departures


Arrival and Departure times are a busy part of the day with parents and children at the door. Always say goodbye to your child, never sneak out, but do try to make your goodbye brief (a few minutes at best). The longer you take to say good bye the harder it is for your child.


Pick up time can be hectic too. If other parents are present and you wish to discuss an important issue with me, please let me know and we will arrange talk at a “quieter” time. Please do not allow your child to run outside to your car while you are still inside.


Behavior Management


My philosophy in life is to treat children with respect and dignity at all times. My job is to ensure that your child enjoys and makes the most of his or her day at Sarah’s Home Daycare.


Children are just beginning to learn how to interact with the world beyond home. The tools I use in supporting good behavior management are praise, respect, positive redirection, active listening, and fair consequences for behavior. Appropriate limit setting, positive reinforcement, and consistency go a long way in helping to give children a good start in learning to manage their behavior.


I encourage children to solve problems themselves, but am ready to assist if necessary by providing possible words, phrases, or other appropriate conflict solving tools.  


The rule of thumb at Sarah’s Home Daycare is “Treat yourself, others, and the things around you with respect”. If a child is a threat to others or the property around them, or previous warnings given, a “time out” or a cool down period may be used. After the “time out”, I will briefly discuss the behavior in short sentences the child will understand. Children will never be punished if they have an accident (spills, bathroom accidents etc), only encouraged to help clean up. There will NEVER be any form of spanking or hitting used in my daycare.


If a child exhibits serious behavior issues, I will discuss the situation privately with parents. (Biting, swearing, kicking etc.) If there is no noticeable change in the child’s behavior and the other children or I are in physical danger then the child will no longer be able to attend daycare.


Meals and Snacks


Sarah’s Home Daycare provides a healthy lunch and two snacks every day. Meals and snacks are a daily opportunity for us to sit down together, eat, and socialize. Children are encouraged but never forced to eat. Our menu plan follows the Canada Food Guide recommendations.


Parents are required to provide all meals and snacks for children under 18 months old. Formula/drinks must be pre-made and will be stored in the refrigerator.


I will do my best to incorporate some of your child’s favorite foods in our meal plans. Please make sure that you include some if these items on the child profile/information sheet. It is also important that you provide updated information on anything your child has or has not had in terms of food. If any allergies develop, please tell me right away. I will post weekly menu plans on our bulletin board. If your child is allergic to any foods on our menu plan, please bring something in place of the meal or snack. Please do not include chips, chocolate, and candy at any time. Treats will be welcome at daycare on birthdays or special holiday events.


Supplies and Equipment


Parents are responsible for supplying:


  • Extra change of clothing appropriate to season
  • Diapers or pull-ups for potty trainers
  • wipes (once a month to go into general daycare supply)
  • Child’s own diaper changing pad
  • Bottles, formula, food  គ months
  • Suitable outdoor clothing for the season
  • Sunhat, Bathing suit,, towel, and sunscreen (summer, there is a wading pool in our back yard)


I will provide a personal storage bin for your child’s belongings


I encourage sensory play and creativity which means that sometimes your child will get messy. Please ensure that your child comes to daycare dressed ready to play. We also will be outside for a period of time every day weather permitting. Please ensure that you provide appropriate outer wear for the season.




The health policy is for the health and well-being of all the children at Sarah’s Home Daycare and enables me to provide the best possible environment for your child.


Parents must keep a child at home if he or she has a contagious illness and/or is displaying symptoms that would inhibit him or her from participating in the program. Payment is still required, even if your child is absent due to illness. Please call the daycare before 7:30 the morning of or if possible the night before to tell me your child will not be at daycare. Please leave a message on voicemail if I cannot get to the phone. The main illnesses are:


·        fever (101 F/39.5 C or higher)

·        vomiting

·        diarrhea

·        discharge from eyes and or ears

·        head lice

·        conjunctivitis (pink eye)

·        unexplained rash

·        coughing until vomiting

·        child obviously unwell (excessive crying , whining or other behavior that inhibits your child from participating in program)

·        Contagious illness of any sort,


I will not accept a child for care if any of these symptoms/illnesses have present within the last 24 hours. If a child displays any of these symptoms while in my care, I will contact parents for immediate pick up. Your child may return 24 hours after the temperature has returned to normal vomiting/diarrhea has stopped or 24 hours after the first dose of an antibiotic. Your child may return to the daycare after the incubation/contagious period is over and he or she is well enough to carry on with the daily schedule. Your child is welcome to attend the daycare if he/she has a mild cold and is able to participate.


Please do not administer Tylenol or other over the counter medications before drop off as it may mask symptoms of something more serious or contagious. .Parents MUST fill out the administration of medication form for ANY medication administered to your child in daycare. Parents’ are required to hand all medication, including Tylenol, directly to me at drop off time. Please do not leave any medication in your child’s bag. Medication must be in the original labeled container. It is parent’s responsibility to give specific instruction in writing, including the name of the medication, dosage, and administration times. It is my responsibility to store the medication properly and deliver it back to you at pick up time.


To help eliminate the spread of germs, regular toy washing and disinfecting will take place. If there has been a child with an illness, I will wash the toys on a more regular basis. Children will wash hands after toileting, at meals and snacks. I will wash my hands after diapering, at meal prep, and at meals and snacks.


I do my best to keep myself and my family healthy and germ free but there may be a time when I am too sick to provide daycare or my child is too sick to expose to other children, I will let parents know as soon as possible so your can make alternate arrangements for your child. I will try to call the night before, but sometimes this is not possible. If I wake up sick, I will call parents between 7– 7:30 the morning of. . If I fall seriously ill during the course of the day, I will notify parents for immediate pick up of your child. It will be your responsibility to find alternate care for your child. I strongly recommend that you have a back up provider lined up for the times that I am closed due to illness or emergency.


Payment is not required for my sick days, as I am unable to provide care.




I make every effort to provide the children with a safe environment through supervision and childproofing. However, minor bumps, scrapes and cuts are inevitable. In the case that something should happen, the appropriate first aid will be given and accident forms will be filled out and signed. I have current First Aid and CPR Training. If a major injury or medical problem occurs, the parents will be contacted immediately.  If I am unable to contact either parent, I will call the emergency contact numbers supplied to me. If necessary I will not hesitate to call 911 or the poison control centre, prior to calling the parents. If necessary the injured or ill child will be transported to the hospital by ambulance at the parent’s expense. All parents are responsible for completing the child’s Health Form and Consent for Emergency Treatment and Transportation. These forms must be returned signed, to me prior to the child starting at Sarah’s Home Daycare.


I have a written fire evacuation plan and regular fire drills are practiced with the children. Emergency numbers are posted at telephone locations and there are First Aid kits ready in the house and backyard.


Transportation and Field Trips


Occasional outings to local places of interest such as the library, Fairy Lake, or a play date in the neighbourhood will provide our program with variety and a chance to socialize outside the daycare. Some outings will be within walking distance but I may need to use my car to get to things that are a little farther away. When the activities are planned and agreed upon by all parties, parents must sign a Field Trip permission form and Transportation permission form (when applicable) prior to your child attending the event. I will take a Travel Kit on all outings. The Travel Kit includes, First aid kit with emergency phone numbers, children’s necessities, snack and a drink


Toys from Home


Sarah’s Home Daycare provides a wide variety of books, games and toys. I ask that children and parents leave toys from home at home. This ensures that your child’s toys don’t get lost or forgotten. This also reduces any problems regarding sharing a special item.


If your child has a special blanket or stuffed animal that he or she likes to sleep with or uses for comforting reasons, then your child is welcome to bring his/her special item.


Nap Time


There will be a nap/time quiet time each day after lunch. All children must nap, read, or play quietly during this period. Parents are encouraged to bring something from home for their child to rest with. Such as a blanket, bear or soother etc


Cleanliness and Hygiene


I do my best to maintain cleanliness in the daycare. .Children’s hands are washed before and after meals and toileting. I wash my hands frequently and also use antibacterial gel. Toys and equipment are washed and disinfected on a regular basis


Toilet Training


I am happy to help you with potty training your child. If we work as a team the process of potty training should be as smooth as possible.  I ask parents to start the training at home (on vacation or weekend) and we will continue your process at daycare. I like to follow parent’s lead so there is less confusion for your child. When your child is ready to start toilet training I ask that parents provide plenty of pull ups and changes of clothing. I have both a potty and a child sized toilet seat.  All wet clothing must be taken home by the parents and replaced the following day


Releasing Child from Care


The normal procedure for release of a child is to let them go with the parent or guardian. I will not release a child to anyone besides a parent or guardian unless I have been notified of a change. A verbal notice is fine on the day, if the person is on the list of people who are authorized to pick up your child. If the person is not on your list, I must have written permission to release your child.  If I do not know the person I will ask for photo identification. This procedure is done for your child’s protection. Please inform your emergency contacts and designated pick-up people so that they will not be surprised or offended.