Enrollment and Getting to Know You Meeting Guide
Instructions: This guide has two sections. The first section outlines examples of questions that you would want to be answered before the child begins attending your program. These are questions that have to do with the safety and health of the child. The second section gives suggestions for a “Getting to Know You” meeting which is meant to be a conversation between the teacher (or director) and the parent to continue to develop their critical partnership. The Keystone STARS Performance Standards require this type of meeting within 60 days of enrollment.
Depending on the parent and where they lead the conversation, you may not use all of these questions, or you may come up with some on your own! Remember that this is only a guide, and you need to tailor your questions to the child’s age and situation. Please be sure to keep notes of your meeting along with this form in case you need to reference your notes at a later date.
If “Getting to Know You” meeting was refused:
Questions that might be asked at enrollment:
Family Composition Questions:
Tell me about your household. (neighborhood, who lives there, names and relationship to child)?
Does your child have any parents that do not live in the home?
Does your child visit this parent?
Are there any custody issues that we should discuss?
Does your child have any siblings (names and ages)?
Does your family have any pets?
Does your child respond to any nicknames?
Does your child have any nicknames for family members?
Is there any other information about your family’s composition that you would like to share?
Child Information :
Has your child been in an early learning program or child care before?
If yes, would you share some information with us? (Where? When? For how long?)
What kind of care (family day care home, relative/neighbor care, group, center)?
Is there a reason for leaving that program that you would like to share with me?
Do you have any of your child’s records from that program?
How did your child react to other children and adults?
What do you think will happen the first day you leave your child with us?
Does your child have any imaginary friends?
Are there any special problems or fears that we should know about?
Does your child do any of the following:
Any special needs (medical, developmental, social, mental health)?
Do any of these special needs require special care by our teachers?
Does your child have an IEP (Individualized Education Plan) or ISFP (Individualized Family Service Plan)?
If so, we would like a copy of the plan so we can provide the best possible learning experience for your child.
What program or individuals work with your children regarding these special needs?
Would you sign a release of information with them so they can speak with us about how to provide enhanced support to your child?
Does your child have any allergies?
Allergies to medicine
How are your child’s allergies treated?
Do you have any special medical or dietary information for management in an emergency (medicine to keep on hand, people to call, etc.)?
Any other medical or special needs?
Describe your child’s schedule:
Normal bedtime, waking time, nap time and duration.
Does your child have a different schedule at any other childcare settings (babysitter, relative/neighbor care, school)?
Regarding toilet habits, what words does your family use for bowel movements and urination?
Any special terminology for private parts?
Is your child toilet trained?
Does your child need to be reminded to go to the toilet during waking hours?
Other required DPW (or other agency) required forms and signatures will be used in conjunction with some of these questions.
Is there information that will help us make the first few days in our program easier for your child?
Is there other information you would like to share?
Getting to Know You Meeting
The “Getting to Know You” meeting should be a conversation between the teacher (or director) and the parents about to create a partnership between the teacher and parent and to discuss the child’s learning opportunities in the program. It is also a great time to discuss the child’s first few weeks in your program and to clarify and reinforce the policies and procedures affecting the family and child. Here are a few questions and suggestions for discussion:
Questions for the Parent:
What are your expectations of our program?
Is any aspect of the education program especially important to your child/family?
Is there any information about your family’s culture, ethnicity, language, or religion that is important for us to know? Would you and/or your family like to be a resource for any cultural awareness activities?
Are you willing to be a volunteer in our classroom?
Are there any other ways you would like to be involved?
Are there any other talents or interests you would like to share with us?
What times are best for us to reach you and for you to come in for parent conferences?
Tell me about your child’s:
Food Likes and Dislikes
Has your child talked to you about his or her experiences in our program so far?
Is he/she positive about the program, other children, and the teaching staff?
If not, how do you think we can make your child’s experience better?
Are there any ways that we can improve communication with you about your child’s experiences?
Do you have any questions about the Parent Handbook? (Have a copy on hand to show the parent)
Do you have any questions about the program, curriculum, or facility?
Take this time to reinforce any specific policies that are important for the parent to understand. If you have the time, go through the Parent Handbook with the parent.
Discuss how the child is transitioning into your classroom.
Share information about the transition meetings, group activities, and parent conferences that are available to the parent.
Show the parent the classroom behavior guidelines.
Find out if the rules are like rules that the parent has at home and discuss any differences.