FAQ’s – Frequently Asked Questions


Below you will find a list of the most commonly asked questions about our program and their respective answers.  Should you have a question that is not listed below, please contact the Preschool Office either by phone at (813) 254-5758 or send us an email.

Wait List / Tours / Enrollment

Do I have to be a member of the church for my child to be enrolled at the Preschool?

No, not at all.  We are proud to say that the children who are enrolled in the Preschool Program come from a very diverse group of families who practice many faiths.

We do want you to know that if you are searching for a church home for your family, we would be honored to have you visit Bayshore.  The church offers two services on Sunday Mornings.  The traditional service begins at 9:00AM while the more modern/contemporary service begins at 11:11AM.

For additional information regarding Bayshore, click here to visit the Church’s website: Bayshore Baptist Church  The church’s website will open in a new tab in your browser.

What is required to have my child enrolled in the Preschool Program?

The first step to enrollment is placing your child on our wait list.  In the spring of each year, we begin the process preparing for the new school year that starts in the fall.

  • To place your child on our wait list, we only require your child’s name, his/her date of birth and your contact information.  Unlike many of our competitors, there is no fee assessed to place a child on the list.
  • The earlier a child is placed on the list, the better the odds are that there will be a spot when enrollment time comes.
  • If you would like to place your child on our wait list, either contact the Preschool Office by phone at (813) 254-5758 or send us an email.  A member of our staff will contact you, gather the required information and be happy to answer any questions that you may have.
  • If your child is on the list and your phone number changes, please contact us to update your contact information.  We wouldn’t want you to miss out on an opportunity to have your child attend Bayshore because we were unable to reach you…

I’m interested in your program for my child. Do you offer tours?

Yes, we are happy to provide tours of the preschool to those parents who are searching for a program for their child.

  • Tours are by appointment only and all tours are individual and not in group form.  We ask that you bring your child with you during the tour.
  • We typically provide tours during the springtime to those parents whose children were previously placed on the wait list as we are working on enrollment for the upcoming school year.  Should you wish to tour the Preschool prior to placing your child on the wait list, we are able to accommodate those requests, also.
  • Tours are typically provided while the Morning Preschool Program is in session so that you can see our program in action.  We show you the classrooms that your child may be in and introduce you to the teachers.   In addition, we show you the chapel, library and the playground.  We also answer any questions that you may have about our program.
  • We know that the decision of where to send your child to preschool is not made lightly, nor hastily, and we are happy to provide as much information about our program as you may require so as to rule Bayshore in or out of your search.

What Documents do I need to provide to have my child enrolled?

When we know that your child has a spot in our program, we will provide you with our registration packet that needs to be completed in it’s entirety.

  • The Registration Packet includes the Fee Schedule and Tuition Agreement.
  • You must provide a completed and current Florida Certification of Immunization Form DH-680 (Commonly referred to as Shot Records).  This form is completed by your child’s pediatrician.  If your religious tenets preclude your child from receiving immunizations, then in place of the immunization form, we need a completed Religious Exemption Form DH-681.  This form is signed by you and also requires a stamp from the Hillsborough County Health Department.
  • You must also provide a current Physical (Form DH 3040-CHP-07-2013) which is also completed by your child’s pediatrician.
  • Your child will not be permitted to attend the preschool program until the shot record and physical forms are provided.
  • Payment of the  $200.00 Registration Fee is due at the time you submit your completed Tuition Agreement.

In August we mail the Enrollment Packet to you which contains:

  • Enrollment Form (5 Pages).
  • Open House Information Letter.
  • Name of your Child’s Teacher.
  • List of Preschool Staff.
  • Reminder that Physical and Shot Records are needed.
  • Invitation for you and your child to visit the playground during the month of August.  This is very beneficial to new children entering the program.

New Parents and Children

Can my child bring a Lovie to school (pacifier, blanket or favorite stuffed animal)?

To help aid in the acclimation to the school, we encourage our younger children to bring their lovie to school at the beginning of the year.

What if my child clings to me or is upset when I drop them off?

Often a child will cling to their parent at the time of separation.

  • The teachers are experienced in  reducing the stress associated with these tearful partings.  When tears occur the teacher will direct your child’s attention to something fun in the classroom, your role is to say when you will be back, say “Good-bye” with a smile and LEAVE.
  • It may take a few days, but every child (and most parents) get over this phase and are soon enjoying their growing independence.
  • If you are concerned, just call the Preschool Office at (813) 254-5758 and leave a message.  The program director will be happy to check on your child’s progress and let you know what activity your child is enjoying.
  • Rest assured you will be called if your child is not happy and busily playing within a half hour.

 

Please note that experience has shown us if the children take advantage of the Playground Visits during the Month of August, the apprehension and drama associated with the new school is almost nonexistent.

Can my child visit the Preschool before the New School Year begins?

Yes, we know there is a lot of stress and anxiety on the parents and the children as the new school year approaches.  To help alleviate this, we invite you and your child to come visit and play on the playground during the month of August.

  • You are welcome to visit during the hours of 9:00AM to 12:00 PM Noon and 2:30PM to 4:00PM.  The playground is closed during nap time.
  • Park your vehicle along Morrison Ave., next to the playground so that the passengers side of your vehicle is next to the sidewalk.
  • Enter thru the playground gate and make sure it is securely closed behind you.

Emergencies / Inclement Weather / Safety

How do you contact me in the event of an emergency during school?

Depending on the type of emergency we use several different methods to contact parents.

  • If it involves a single child, then our first attempt is via the contact phone numbers that you provided at the beginning of the school year.  We begin with parents and then work our way down the list until we reach an authorized individual.  In those rare occasions when we have difficulty reaching you, then we may send an email or possibly a text message.
  • If the emergency involves the entire preschool then we utilize the One Call Now automated broadcast messaging system to notify parents.  When you enrolled your child, we had you complete a form for the One Call System.  This is an automated messaging system that allows us to broadcast messages via text.  Examples of emergencies we would use this system for include such things as school closings due to severe or inclement weather, power outages and significant plumbing problems which would render the building inoperable.

Remember, we follow the Hillsborough County School Systems Closure Schedule.  If Public Schools are closed for an emergency, then the Preschool will also be closed.

How do you notify me in the event the Preschool is closed?

In those rare cases where we need to close the preschool due to an emergency or severe weather, we take the following steps to notify our parents:

  • We utilize the One Call Now automated broadcast messaging system to notify all parents.  When you enrolled your child, we had you complete a form for the One Call System.  This is an automated messaging system that allows us to broadcast messages via text.
  • We will place a notice of the closure on our website.
  • We change the outgoing voice message on the Preschool phone system to notify those calling the Preschool office.

 

Remember, we follow the Hillsborough County Public School System’s Closure Schedule.  If Public Schools are closed for an emergency, then the Preschool will also be closed.

Is the Preschool secured during the day?

Yes, as you know, the Preschool operates out of the Bayshore Baptist Church facilities.  While the church building is open during the day for visitors and events, the areas of the building that the Preschool operates within is kept secured at all times.   All hallways that lead to an area occupied by the Preschool are locked and there is a sign on the door stating “Locked for Preschool Security”.  All classroom doors that lead to the playground are also locked during the day for security.

Should you need to access the preschool at times other than normal arrival and dismissal, then enter the church building thru the double doors from the Parkland Ave., parking lot and proceed straight down the main hallway to the Preschool Office.  In the event the Parkland Ave., doors are locked, then call the Preschool Office at (813) 254-5758 and a member of our staff will meet you to let you in to the building.

Arrival & Dismissal

Where do I Drop Off and Pick Up my Child?

Weather Permitting

Arrivals and dismissals are performed through the Playground Gate located on Morrison Ave.  All vehicles are to arrive and depart flowing with normal traffic in a westerly direction.  When you park along Morrison Ave., the passenger side of your vehicle will be next to the sidewalk.

Additional parking is available in the church parking lot just west of the playground past the swings.

  • Do Not leave children unattended in your car while you come inside the building.
  • Do not leave your car unlocked or valuables in plain site while your vehicle is unattended.
  • Failure to arrive and depart in the proper direction has resulted in parents receiving tickets from the Tampa Police Department.

Inclement Weather

On those bad weather days, arrivals and dismissals are performed through the covered entrance on the Parkland Blvd., side of the church.  Parents form a car line that flows from Morrison Ave., behind the church to the covered  entrance.  Please stay in your vehicle at all times so you can continue to move up the line.

Dropping off:

  • We have staff present from 8:45AM to 9:00AM to assist in removing your child(ren) from your vehicle.
  • We accompany your child to his/her classroom.

Noon Dismissal:

  • Place your “Rainy Day” card on the passengers side dash of your vehicle so it is visible to staff as you pull up.
  • Please do not exit your vehicle when picking up your child(ren)
  • We will walk your child(ren) to your vehicle and buckle them into their car seats.

For those parents whose children are in the Extended Day Program dropping off before 8:45AM or picking up in the afternoon, please call the preschool office at (813) 254-5758 when you are arriving at the covered entrance.  A member of our staff will come get your child in the morning or bring your child to your vehicle in the afternoon.

Exterior doors are always kept locked for the safety of those in the building.

How Early can my child be dropped off?

Preschool hours are 9:00AM until 12:00 Noon.  You can drop your child off for school beginning at 8:45AM.  Should you need to arrive between 7:30AM and 8:45AM an additional charge will be assessed.

Early morning drop off is included in the Extended Day Program.

What if we are running late in the morning?

We know that things don’t always go as scheduled.  Should you arrive after school has started, please escort your child to their classroom and leave them with a staff member.

  • Please ensure the Playground Gate is securely closed when you enter and depart.  Safety is key!!!
  • Punctuality and Regular Attendance is key to the success of our program.  You will find that your child enjoys seeing his/her friends on the playground before the 9:00AM bell.  While sometimes it can’t be avoided, children who enter the classroom late can cause interruptions in the daily routine.

How Late can I pick up my child?

  • Children who attend the Morning Program need to be picked up by 12:00PM Noon to not be charged any additional fees.
  • Children who are enrolled in the Extended Day Program need to be picked up by 5:00PM or you will be subject to late fees.

 

Who can Pick Up my Child?

When you enrolled your child, you were asked to list 3 people that have your permission to pick up your child(ren) from the Preschool.  We provide five (5) laminated ID cards that have your child’s name on them.  Please keep one (1) ID card for yourself and then distribute an ID card to each person that you authorized.  Our staff will ask to see the ID card before releasing your child(ren) to anyone.  Please understand that it takes months before the staff will recognize all of the parents, grandparents, friends, baby-sitters and various adults that are permitted to pickup your child(ren), so be prepared to show your child’s ID Card.

The safety and well being of every child entrusted to us is of paramount importance.  Your cooperation and understanding is greatly appreciated.

Backpacks / Clothing / Toys

Does my child need a backpack?

We encourage your child to bring a backpack to preschool.

  • The backpack should be LARGE enough to accommodate a 9×12 inch piece of art paper and a change of clothes.
  • Do Not choose a backpack that has a handle and wheels.
  • Each week your child will bring home “treasures” that he/she has painted, pasted and/or colored.
  • You will also find weekly diaries, monthly calendars and WEE Learn Curriculum activity sheets inside your child’s backpack to keep you informed about your child’s activities while at preschool.

What type clothing should my child wear to school?

Children get dirty as they learn and play…

  • Please send your child in comfortable washable clothing.
  • Clothing with belts, straps, complicated buttons and zippers cause frustration for the child who is learning to be self sufficient and should be avoided.
  • Shoes should be closed or have a strap around the ankle.  We DO NOT allow children to wear crocs (shoes) or flip flops to school.
  • You should send an extra change of clothing (including socks and underwear) in your child’s backpack.  As you know, accidents happen…
  • The playground is covered in mulch which gets into their shoes and sticks to their clothing.  You know your child had a great day at school when they come home covered from head to toe in mulch!!

My child isn’t or hasn’t completed potty training yet – is this a problem?

No, not at all.  Potty training is not something that can be rushed or forced.

  • For those children in the Two Year Old Classes we ask that you provide a large container of wipes 3 to 4 times a year.  We use them for quick clean ups after painting and snack mishaps as well as for diaper changes.
  • If your child is still in diapers, you need to provide diapers.  We label these with your child’s name and will alert you when it’s time to send in more.
  • If your child is in the Pull Up Stage, then please send them in as well.
  • Please have a conversation with your child’s teacher before going from Pull Up’s to Underwear.
  • We know that the children get busy playing and forget to go potty, so we also remind them to go when needed.
  • It’s this stage when the extra change of clothes in your child’s backpack are all to important.  As you know, accidents happen and we want your child to be as comfortable as possible while going through the potty training stage.

Please Note that all children must be potty trained before they can be accepted into the 3 Year Old Program.

Snacks / Lunch / Naps

What kind of snacks do you serve?

Snacks are served to the children daily.  We try to serve nutritious snacks with very little sugar.  We serve a variety of grains; Cherrios, vanilla wafers, pretzels, cheese goldfish, graham crackers, Ritz crackers, Teddy Grahams, etc. We always serve water.  We also offer Gatorade and juices; apple, grape, cranberry, cranapple or assorted fruit flavors.

  • Children are never forced to eat a particular food, but we do encourage them to taste and sample.
  • Should your child have any food allergies please arrange to provide snacks that are appropriate for your child.

We also have special snacks that are tailored to the Weekly Theme. For example, the children make homemade butter when learning about farms.  The children are always excited to experience foods that relate to the topics we are learning.

If you wish to provide a snack for your child’s class, please make arrangements with your child’s teacher.

For those children who are enrolled in the Extended Day Program, we have a snack time after they awake from their naps.

My Child is a Picky Eater

We know all too well that sometimes children are particular about what they wish to eat.

  • A child is never forced to eat a particular food, but we do encourage them to taste and sample.
  • We have found that because snacks are consumed in a group environment, often times when a child sees their friends and classmates eating something they are more apt to give it a try.
  • We also know that children are excited when we make special snacks such as Dirt Dessert (chocolate pudding, crushed Oreo cookies and gummy worms).  So don’t panic if your child comes home and proudly tells you they ate dirt at school today when you ask them how their day was….

My Child is in the Extended Day Program – What is the Lunch Policy?

Children who are enrolled in the Extended Day Program need to bring their lunch from home.  In addition to their food, please provide a drink, napkin and any silverware that may be needed.

  • Hillsborough County Health Department rules prohibit us from heating any food item that may be in their lunch box.
  • Please alert a staff member if the lunch needs to be refrigerated.

Do the children take naps while at Preschool?

Only children who are enrolled in the Extended Day Program take naps during the day.

  • Mats are provided by the preschool and are assigned on an individual basis.
  • Mats are covered with cotton crib sheets that are laundered by preschool staff on a weekly basis.
  • We encourage you to send your child’s personal blanket and/or favorite stuffed animal for company at nap time.  Please make sure these items are labeled with your child’s name and brought to school in their backpack.
  • We have a limited amount of storage space, so please choose sleeping items that will fit inside your child’s cubbie.

Illness / Medications / Allergies

My child isn’t feeling well, can they come to school?

In a word, NO…  The Preschool is not a place for sick children.

  • Children must remain at home if they have signs or symptoms such as: Fever, Vomiting, Sore Throat, Ear Aches, Pink Eye, Rash, Diarrhea or a Productive Cough.
  • Child Care Regulations require a child to be free from any of the above symptoms for at least twenty-four (24) hours before they can return to school.  Example: If your child had symptoms on Monday, he or she could not attend school and your child must remain at home on Tuesday as well.  If they did not exhibit any symptoms on Tuesday, then they may return to school on Wednesday.
  • We reserve the right to send a child home based on the observations of the child’s behavior.  Your child must be able to participate in the class activities.  Children who fall asleep in class, have a constant runny or colored/green discharge from their nose, exhibit frequent coughing, or are too tired to participate in the class activities are subject to being sent home.
  • We may also request a note from your child’s doctor stating that they are no longer contagious and may return to the classroom.

Our goal is to keep each child well and happy while in our care.  We want to ensure that your family and our own families stay well.

Can my child take medications while at school?

Occasionally, when a child is recovering from an illness, the physician will want medication continued for several days.  If our staff is to administer ANY medications (prescription or over-the-counter) we must abide by the Child Care Licensing Rules.

  • State law requires that prescription medication be sent in its original container, with the child’s name appearing on the original label.
  • Over-the-counter medication must have age appropriate directions regarding dosage amounts. We cannot administer medication that states “Children under six consult a physician”. The medication must list a dosage for a two or three year old child.
  • You will be required to fill out and sign a medication form.  Please provide the completed form and the medication to a staff member and alert them as to if the medication needs to be refrigerated.  Do Not leave any medications in your child’s backpack.

If you have any additional questions regarding medications your child may need to take while at school, please contact the Preschool Office at (813) 254-5758.

My child has allergies, what do I need to do?

We know that allergies are common, be they food related, oak pollen, etc….

  • It is very important that your child’s school records include an up-to-date and ACCURATE list of allergies at all times.
  • Each classroom contains a master list of all allergies that children in the Preschool have.
  • If the allergies require an EpiPen be kept onsite for your child’s use, you will need to provide the EpiPen and State law requires that it be sent in its original container, with the child’s name appearing on the original label.  In addition, you will need to complete a medication form.

Billing / Payments / Tax Documents

How do you bill for services?

We bill on a monthly basis.  Invoices are sent out at the beginning of each month for your child’s services from the previous month.

  • Invoices include services or fees incurred during the preceding month, such as monthly fees, additional charges for early drop off and/or late pick ups.  We also bill for the material fees in the September and January invoices.
  • Invoices reflect payments received since last invoice date and show total balance due.
  • Payments for All Invoices are due on the 1st of the Month and a $15 Late Charge is assessed on the 11th.

Some Parents like to pay the annual fees at one time.  If this is something you would like to do, please contact the preschool office and we will be happy to generate an invoice that reflects the correct amount.

What methods of payments do you accept?

Currently we only accept payment by check or money order.  The easiest way to make your payment is to give the check or money order directly to a member of the staff when you are dropping off or picking up your child.  Please do not place payment in your child’s backpack.

Please note that we are researching available options that will offer additional and digital payment choices.  We will provide an update once a decision has been made.

Do you provide an IRS acceptable form for our annual tax filing?

Yes, our statements are acceptable for submission to the IRS to report your child care expenses. School years overlap two federal tax filing years.  Depending on how long your child has been enrolled at Bayshore, you or your accountant may have to extrapolate child care expenses from more than one statement period.  Our Federal Tax Identification Number is also provided for your filing needs.

Should you have any questions about where the amounts are obtained from, please contact the Preschool office for additional information.

Special Events / Programs / Visitors

Does the Preschool have any Special Visitors?

Photos:

  • Each year Suncoast Smiles comes to the Preschool to take individual pictures of the students.
  • We send home notices so you can dress your child appropriately for “Picture Day”
  • When completed, Suncoast Smiles returns to the Preschool with the photo packages for you to review and purchase.

Friendly Pirates:

  • Each year in conjunction with the Gasparilla Festivities, we have a visit from some Friendly Pirates.  They bring beads to pass out to the children.
  • We make sure they are dressed in a manner that is not intimidating to the children.
  • If you or someone you know is a member of a Gasparilla Krewe and would like to participate in this annual event, please contact the Preschool Office.

Fire Truck:

  • Each year (typically in April) we have a visit from the City of Tampa Fire Department.
  • They bring the Fire Engine and set it up in the parking lot on the Parkland Ave side of the church.
  • The children get to go inside the Fire Engine and see the different equipment that the Fire Fighter’s use.
  • A fun time is had by all…  You can see photos of a previous visit in the Galleries section of our website.

Does the Preschool hold any Special Events or Programs?

Yes, we have quite a few special events and programs throughout the year.  They are listed below in chronological order:

Open House

Each school year prior to the first day of school, we hold an open house for the parents and children.

  • The event takes place in the evening, typically at 7:00PM so as not to interfere with work and sleep schedules.
  • You and your child have an opportunity to meet the teacher and see the classroom.

Parent Seminars

Each year, typically in Late September / Early October  we host 2 seminars, for parents only, discussing such topics as curriculum, developmental stages, the daily schedule, blessings, songs, and upcoming events. These dates will be on the yearly calendar and we send home reminder notices with the children also.  These sessions are very informative for both new and current parents.

Halloween Parade & Parties

This is a very special time for the children (parents as well).  The children dress up in costume and we hold a parade throughout the church building where the church staff passes out treats to all of the children.  After the parade, we invite you to join your child for the classroom party.  The date for this event is in the yearly calendar and you will receive notes and requests from your teacher for the items that you are asked to supply.  Photos of a previous event are available in the Galleries section of our website.

Thanksgiving Picnic

Each year we invite the parents to join the staff and the children for a Thanksgiving picnic.  We ask that you prepare a sack lunch for your child for this event.  Older Siblings and grandparents are welcome.  The date will be on the yearly calendar and reminders are also sent home.  The children really enjoy having the opportunity to spend this special time with their parents and family members.

Christmas Program

Each December the children present their annual Christmas Program in the church sanctuary.  Each age group shares songs and finger plays relating to the Christmas season.  The date for this event can be found in the yearly calendar.

  • The children work very hard to prepare for this event.
  • Parents, siblings and grandparents are encouraged to attend.
  • At the conclusion of the program, the children enjoy refreshments in their classrooms.

Easter Parties

In celebration of Easter, the children participate in an Easter Egg Hunt and Party.  The date for this event can be found in the yearly calendar.  Photos of a previous event can be found in the Galleries section of our website.

  • The children make and decorate custom baskets to use during the hunt.
  • You will receive communication from your child’s teacher as to what to provide such as plastic eggs for the hunt and items needed for the party.
  • Parents are asked to help hide the plastic eggs for the children to find.
  • This is a fun event for grandparents as well.

End of the Year Program

The Preschool year comes to an end with our annual End of the Year Program.  Just as for the Christmas Program, the children perform songs and finger plays in the church sanctuary.  It’s a wonderful way to see just how much your children have learned, grown and matured during the course of the year.  The date for this event can be found in the yearly calendar.

Can we invite my child’s classmates to his/her Birthday Party?

  • Please do not ask your child’s teacher to distribute party invitations unless every child in the room is being invited.
  • We are happy to provide you with addresses if you wish to mail invitations.
  • Should you not wish to have your address provided to other parents, please notify the office.
  • Phone Numbers and Email Addresses are Never Distributed.

 

Can I send a special snack for my child’s birthday?

We know that your child’s birthday is a very special day.  You may send cookies, muffins, brownies, doughnuts or “mini” cupcakes to be shared by the class for that day.  We ask that you check with your child’s teacher to be certain that a convenient day is chosen and to give us time to notify parents of any classmates whose child may have food allergies.