Tender Years’ COVID-19 Response
While the COVID-19 pandemic has caused considerable confusion and disruption to our daily lives, we at Tender Years have compiled this page to help our parents stay up-to-date on our centers and programs. Please check back regularly for new and revised information. As always, if you have questions or concerns, please contact your center director.
Due to the large amount of medical staff and other essential workers whose families we provide childcare for, OCDEL of the Central Region has issued a waiver to Tender Years, Inc. Child Development Centers.
ALL centers are open 7:00am to 5:30pm.
All Tender Years centers are following the recommendations of the PA Department of Human Services (DHS) and The Office of Child Development and Early Learning (OCDEL). You can review the current guidance here. On Monday, March 16, we implemented new policies in order to drastically limit the amount of people coming in and out of the center on a daily basis…
1) ALL staff coming into the center will be checked for symptoms (including fever, cough, shortness of breath, chills or repeated shaking with chills, new loss of taste or smell). Staff must report through front doors only. Staff who are unwell or who have a fever or other symptoms will not be allowed to work. All back doors will be inaccessible.
2) All children should be brought to the front door of the center for a health check before being allowed to stay for care. Front doors will remain locked and key pads or pin code pads will not allow access to parents. A designated staff person will take your child to their classroom. We ask that you please wait until a health check has been completed. Please note, it is up to the discretion of Tender Years staff to determine whether your child is healthy, based on our current policies.
3) Health checks will be administered with a shield between child and staff member, and will include a visual inspection for signs of illness and a temperature screening with a thermometer. Thermometers will be cleaned and disinfected between each use. Clean gloves will be used for each child.
4) Parents shall limit bringing items from home into the center. *Breastfeeding mothers will be asked to please sign their children out.
5) At the end of the day, please come to the front door, and a designated staff person will bring your child to the front for pick up.
6) Prior to children going to their classrooms, a designated staff person will check them for illness symptoms (including cough, shortness of breath, chills or repeated shaking with chills, new loss of taste or smell) and fever (100.4°F or higher). If a child has cold or flu symptoms or fever of 100.4°F or higher, they will not be allowed to attend childcare.
7) If you traveled recently, we ask that you please comply with the World Health Organization guidelines and NO ONE IN THE HOUSEHOLD SHOULD VISIT THE CENTER.
8) We recommend that parents designate a single person to drop off and pick up a child. We also recommend that the designated person is not a “vulnerable” person (older person such as a grandparent or a person with serious underlying medical condition) or a person at high risk of contracting COVID-19 (such as a healthcare worker exposed to ill patients).
9) We will continue intensive cleaning with Clorox Hydrogen Peroxide (a hospital grade sanitizer) and Clorox Total 360 machines. We will continue to disinfect toys that are handled or mouthed. And our professional cleaning service will continue to clean the centers as scheduled.
10) We will continue to practice frequent and meticulous hand washing (both staff and children).
Face Mask Policy
Following orders from PA Secretary of Health, Rachel Levine, Tender Years, Inc. is complying with the Universal Face Coverings Order: “to protect the public from the spread of COVID-19, all customers are required to wear masks while on premises, and deny entry to individuals not wearing masks.”
This applies to all children age 2 years or older, as well to all Parents dropping off and picking up children.
Children 2 years of age and older are required to wear a face covering as described in the Order of the Secretary of the Pennsylvania Department of Health Order for Universal Face Coverings, unless they fit one of the exceptions included in Section 3 of the Order. If a child is outdoors and able to consistently maintain a social distance of at least 6 feet from individuals who are not part of their household, they do not need to wear a mask.
Childcare staff are also required to wear cloth face coverings.
Cloth face coverings will be washed daily at our centers.
Notifications of Potential Exposure to COVID-19 & Case Reporting
We will inform our staff and families of possible exposure to a positive COVID-19 case. Parents and staff will be notified through the emergency alert system on Tadpoles. The alert will specify possible exposure, exposure or a positive case, as well as guidance for center closures, quarantine and exclusion (per the PA Department of Health, DHS and OCDEL).
Tender Years, Inc. will report COVID-19 cases to the Pennsylvania Department of Health (DOH) and Department of Human Services (DHS) within 24 hours of notification. We will inform parents of enrolled children and staff when there is a suspected or positive case of COVID-19 in our childcare center. Notification will include the appropriate guidance from the Department of Health and Department of Human Services. For your reference, please download the PA DOH Covid-19 Patient Instructions for Self Isolation below.
Summer Camp & Junior Camp Programs
With the school year ending soon, and summer right around the corner, we’re busy preparing for our exciting 2020 Junior and Summer camps: Destination Decade!
All three of our centers will be open for camp, and we want to reassure you that we are following the Pennsylvania Department of Health’s “Public Health and Safety Measures for Businesses Permitted to Maintain In-Person Operations”. Our top priority is the health and wellbeing of our children, their families and our staff. Therefore, we are making several modifications to our camp programs, including…
1) We will continue our drop-off and pick-up screening policies.
2) We will continue to wear protective masks as recommended by the CDC and outlined by the Pennsylvania Department of Health.
3) We will continue our intensive cleaning and handwashing procedures.
4) We will continue to maintain care groups by creating camp teams. Each team will be made up of smaller groups of campers and will be assigned a primary caregiver. Teams will rotate through activities where necessary to maintain distancing.
5) We will replace off-site field trips with fun and exciting activities at our centers. In addition to the originally planned enrichment activities listed in the parent packet, our incredibly talented staff is organizing virtual field trips, lessons, and “take out” activities that we can bring into the center. Some of these may include:
• A virtual Paint & Create class
• Make your own pizza kit for lunch
• Create and fly your own kite
• Virtual visit to an art museum
• Virtual visits from local zoos or theaters
As soon as we finalize our revised activities, we will post updated calendars on our Summer Camp page.
Finally, for families who wish to pay for summer camp in full, our payment deadline has been extended from May 1st to May 8th.
As always, if you have any questions, please feel free to reach out to your center director. It’s going to be an awesome summer for our campers!
Registration For Returning Students
If you have recently withdrawn your child from Tender Years in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, we want you to know that we will be waiving the Returning Student Registration Fee for children who return by June 8, 2020. Please take a moment to review our policy regarding Returning Student Registration…
COVID-19 Returning Student Registration Policy
As per Tender Years’ Parent Handbook, a re-enrollment fee, or Returning Student Registration Fee, will be collected to secure a child’s spot in one of our programs. However, in light of the current circumstances, Tender Years will waive the re-enrollment/registration fee for children who were recently withdrawn due to the COVID-19 pandemic and are re-enrolled by June 8, 2020.
After June 8, 2020, the normal Registration Fee policy (Parent Handbook, page 11) will apply, and a fee will be required to secure your child’s spot. Please note that Summer Camp and Kindergarten Programs require separate non-refundable registration fees. If you have already paid one or both fees, your child’s spot will remain secured in the corresponding program(s).
Pennsylvania’s Department of Human Services (DHS) and Office of Child Development and Early Learning (OCDEL) have released an FAQ for Families considering child care. You can access the document here: Child Care FAQs for Families in Need of Care