IMPORTANT: Temporary Closure Effective Wednesday, March 18th

The Keating Out-of-School Care Board of Directors held an emergency meeting via teleconference tonight to decide the best course of action in light of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic situation. After heavy deliberation, the Board has made the difficult decision to shut down our centre for the time being. This temporary closure will take effect as of tomorrow, Wednesday, March 18th, and will continue until further notice.

This closure means that we will not be running Spring Break Camp for the remainder of the break. Families registered for Spring Break Camp will not be charged fees for any spots during the days of closure. Fees will still be charged for March 16th and 17th.

This temporary closure will have significant and lasting ramifications for our programs, our staff, and of course our KOSC families. The Board of Directors will be having another meeting this Friday, March 20th to discuss the logistics of the closure beyond Spring Break and to ensure that we are adequately prepared to resume operations once the threat of COVID-19 has been contained. I will continue to provide updates as new information becomes available.

As Program Manager, I sincerely regret any additional stress and inconvenience that our closure will cause for our KOSC families during what has already been a very difficult and uncertain time. This is an unprecedented situation, and the decision to close was not made lightly; however, at this time, we feel that it is the best way for us to protect the health and safety of children, families, and staff, which has always been our top priority.

We appreciate your ongoing patience and understanding throughout this public health emergency, and we look forward to reopening once it is safe to do so.

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Current Member Re-Confirmation Forms

Just a reminder that we will begin accepting re-confirmation forms from current members starting on March 1st. All of the forms you will need to re-confirm your space in care are included at the end of this post, and hard copies will also be available from the Pirate Portable later this week. You may submit the forms via email or in person.

Please take the time between now and March 1st to review the Registration Information Sheet and the Parent Handbook. Both of these documents have been updated with new information.

Unlike the waitlist for new members, re-confirmation is not “first come, first served.” As long as you submit your forms within the re-confirmation period (March 1st – 15th), you will keep your space in the 2020-21 school year, so no need to line up at dawn to beat the rush. 🙂

You may also submit registration forms for younger siblings at this time. Please make sure to fill out a complete registration package for any children who have not previously attended KOSC. If your child is already attending KOSC or has done so in the past, we do NOT require the full registration package, just the re-confirmation form and PAD agreement.

As part of the re-confirmation process, we ask that you take a moment to check over your child’s registration file and confirm that all of the information is up-to-date (phone numbers, authorized pick-ups, etc). If your child has a care plan for allergies or other medical conditions, we also ask that you confirm that the plan is still in place, as well as any changes in protocol. If you are submitting your forms via email, please make sure to stop by sometime during the re-confirmation period to review and update your file.

A PAD agreement for the 2020-21 school year is required to complete your re-confirmation. If you are submitting one PAD agreement for multiple children in the same family, please ensure that all children’s names are included on the form. Please note that if a PAD agreement is not completed, we will be unable to complete your re-confirmation and your child’s spot will not be confirmed.

As previously mentioned, KOSC is changing our fee structure this year and we are no longer charging pro-rated fees for months in which school holidays occur. Instead, we have calculated a reduction of fees for the pro-rated months which will be averaged out throughout all ten months of the school year.

We have also changed the way in which Pro-D Days are billed; it is now a flat rate of $35/day for all families. However, families who are enrolled in both full-time After School Care and full-time Before School Care will see an additional reduction in their fees to compensate for this change. Registration for Pro-D Days is still separate from registration in Before and After School Care and must be submitted starting on the first day of the school year.

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact us. We are looking forward to another awesome year at KOSC!

Re-Confirmation Package 2020-21

Fees 2020-21

PAD Agreement Instructions 2020-21

PAD Authorization 2020-21

Parent Handbook 2020-21

Registration Information Sheet 2020-21

Registration Package 2020-21 (for younger siblings starting in September 2020)

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COVID-19 Update (Tuesday, March 17th)

There still has not been a clear directive from Island Health or the provincial government in regards to childcare centres. While both John Horgan and Dr. Bonnie Henry have discussed the importance of childcare for essential workers, there has been little in the way of guidance for childcare providers, especially in light of the announcement earlier today that school will be cancelled indefinitely for K-12 students.

The KOSC Board of Directors will be having an emergency meeting tonight to discuss the best course of action based on the information that we have. Please keep an eye on your emails and this KOSC website for an update late tonight.

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Many of you have probably been keeping up with the latest announcements this morning in regards to the COVID-19 pandemic, including the press conference with BC Health Minister Adrian Dix and provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry. For those who have not heard, the provincial government has announced a ban on gatherings of 50 or more people. An announcement regarding schools will be made tomorrow.

I have contacted Island Health to find out what that means for licensed childcare facilities such as ours, as we have between 50-75 children registered on most days of Spring Break Camp. The person I spoke with told me that Island Health will be having a meeting this afternoon to discuss the implications of the latest developments and should have an update for us by this evening. Additionally, the KOSC Board of Directors will be holding an emergency meeting tomorrow evening to approve a formal policy response to the ongoing pandemic.

We will continue to provide updates as we receive more information. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact me.

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Spring Break Camp and COVID-19 Update

I wanted to provide a quick update in regards to Spring Break Camp and the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. There have been concerns from parents and staff alike as the situation continues to escalate, and I want you to know that they are being heard and acknowledged. As always, our first and foremost priority remains the safety and well-being of the children in our care, as well as our staff and the community at large.

At this point in time, we are planning to open tomorrow for Spring Break Camp, taking all the precautions mentioned in our previous email, including changes to planned field trips and activities. The Board of Directors has been hard at work on a more comprehensive pandemic response policy. We hope to have this out to families in the next day or two.

This situation continues to develop, and circumstances are changing on a day-by-day basis. We recognize that this is a stressful and uncertain time for many families, and we appreciate your patience and understanding as KOSC determines the best course of action to ensure everyone’s health and safety. Please do not hesitate to contact us with any concerns or questions.

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A Message From Our Board On COVID-19

Dear Parents and Guardians,

As you aware, the World Health Organization has now categorized COVID-19 as a pandemic. And, as cases of infection continue to grow, including those in BC and now on the Island, it is important that we remain abreast of what efforts are needed closest to home, at school, and at childcare. The health and safety of our children is our top priority at all times.

The Board would like to let parents, guardians, and caregivers know that we, and KOSC management, are actively monitoring the situation. KOSC will make operational decisions concerning childcare consistent with directives from Island Health (with whom we are in daily contact), Ministry of Health announcements, and direction from the school district. We will update you should KOSC operations be affected by any such changes in policy.

For now, KOSC staff will continue to instruct children in, and to practise, the rules of health and hygiene, including an emphasis on thorough and effectivehand-washing, and, behaviors such as proper mouth-covering when sneezing and coughing. In addition, KOSC staff are conducting extra cleaning of our facilities after morning and afternoon care. Parents are encouraged to keep their children at home should they fall ill during the pandemic.

Should you have any questions or concerns please contact any member of the Board, or Rachel. Thank you.

Adrian Denegar
President, Board of Directors
Keating Out-of-School Care Society

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Spring Break Camp and Current Member Re-Confirmation Reminder

Just a reminder that today is the last day of Early Bird Registration for Spring Break Camp, so if you need to make any changes to your requested days, please make sure to send them in by the end of today. All registrations will be considered final once this deadline has passed.

If you have already sent in a request to register for or change care and have not received a confirmation that I received it, my apologies — I have tried to respond to emails as they come in, but I have been swamped the past couple of weeks. Please feel free to resend if you are concerned that we may not have received them.

We are currently determining our capacity for Spring Break Camp. Demand for care has been unprecedented this year, possibly in excess of our ability to staff. In the event that we are not able to accommodate all requests, we will inform you of your position on the waitlist. We are trying to make as many spaces available as possible.

Also, a reminder that we will begin taking current member re-confirmations on March 1st. You can submit your forms via email or in person. Please ensure that you fill out the Pre-Authorized Debit form for the 2020-21 school year, as your re-confirmation will not be considered complete without it. You may also submit registration packages for any siblings who will be starting KOSC in September 2020.

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Planned protest on Pat Bay Highway today

As you may be aware, there is a planned blockade of the Pat Bay Highway in protest of the Coastal GasLink Pipeline. It is anticipated that there will be a significant disruption to traffic in the area from Island View Road to Mount Newton Cross Road between the hours of 2:00pm and 5:00pm.

While our centre will be open until 6pm as usual, the delays cause by this type of demonstration can be unpredictable, so we advise that parents err on the side of caution and allow themselves extra time when leaving to pick-up from KOSC.

Also, this is a friendly reminder that today and tomorrow are early dismissal days at Keating. Classes will let out at 1:48pm on these days, and After School Care will run from 1:48pm to 6:00pm, so if your child is scheduled to attend on Wednesdays and/or Thursdays, they will come to KOSC immediately after dismissal. There is no additional cost for this extra hour of care.

If you will be picking your child up directly from school, please let us know so that we can mark them away and avoid any last-minute phone calls to track them down. 🙂

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