- School Information
- Security, Safety & Discipline
- School & Classroom Events
- Student Services
The School Information section includes information on:
- Before School Begins
- Class Placement
- Child Visits
- Ice Cream Social
- Stop-By and Drop-Off
- Staggered Return To School
- Arrival & Dismissal Procedures
- Early Room
- Morning Carpool
- Late Arrivals
- 1 p.m. Dismissal
- Extended Day
- Late Pick-Ups
- When School Is Closed
- Scheduled School Closures
- Late Starts
- Emergency/Weather School Closures
- Early Childhood School Day
- Early Childhood Schedule
- Descriptions Of The Day
- Personal Items For School
- Dressing For School
- Lost & Found
- Personal Space
- Raincoats And Boots
- Rest Mat Or Blanket
- Early Childhood Parent Council
- Parent Tips
- Home Preparation
- Separation Anxiety
New families will be contacted by Parents Association volunteers. These volunteers serve as our new family liaisons. They will be glad to answer any questions you have about Pembroke Hill and offer suggestions for play dates during the summer.
There are numerous factors taken into consideration when making placement decisions such as gender balance, social/emotional factors, learning and teaching styles, and academic ability. Pembroke Hill grade level teachers work as a group, in collaboration with division heads, learning specialists and resource teachers, to determine classroom placement for their students and ensure that all children are placed thoughtfully into the next year's class/homeroom/section. Our teachers know their students very well and will make a placement that they consider to be in the best interest of your child. Therefore, we do not accept teacher requests from parents. We ask that you adhere to this policy.
Child Home Visit
The "Child Home Visit" is the first step in your child's transition to the Pembroke Hill early childhood school. and/or their new grade. It is an opportunity for your child to meet with their teacher in a place where they feel most comfortable and confident - home. Your child’s teacher will call ahead to schedule the visit at your convenience. Usually, the visit lasts about 30 minutes. During the visit your child may want to introduce the teacher to siblings, the family pets, play a simple game with the teacher, show a favorite toy or give a tour of their bedroom and play area(s). Please do not go to any trouble or worry about the condition of your house; the teacher is coming to meet and get to know your child. However, the home visit is also a good time to chat briefly with the teacher. If you have more than a few questions, please let the teacher know so they can plan extra time for the visit.
Some tips for the home visit:
- You can put the photograph the teacher will send your child on the refrigerator to help count down the days to the visit.
- If you have any concerns about the teacher's visit, please feel free to call the early childhood division head at 816-936-1241.
- Talk to your child about what they may want to show the teacher.
- Select a time for the home visit when your child is at their best and most open to meeting new people
Please explain to siblings that the teacher is coming to visit and focus on their brother or sister, and will need to spend time visiting one-on-one.
Ice Cream Social (Wornall Campus)
4:30 - 5:30 p.m.
Wornall Campus Courtyard.
A time to make connections with other families, your child’s teachers and enjoy a sweet treat.
Stop-By And Drop-Off
Stop-By and Drop-Off is an important school experience designed to help your child's transition back to school. You are invited to "Stop-by" the classroom on your child's first day of school between 8 and 9 a.m. This is a time to introduce your child to the teachers, classroom and other children while also dropping off school supplies. Children will continue with their first day of school after saying goodbye.
- Schedule (Both Early Chlidhood and Lower School)
- Aug. 17
- Cohort A attends, Cohort B Off
- 8 to 9 a.m. - Stop-By and Drop-Off
- Aug. 18
- Cohort B attends, Cohort A off
- 8 to 9 a.m. - Stop-By and Drop-Off
- Aug. 17
- Families may stop by to greet the teachers, see their child's classroom and drop off supplies.
- There will be no early room on these days.
- Parents may leave at any time, but must leave no laters than 9 a.m.
- Families are encouraged to drop off older children first since they will need less time in the classroom and their drop-off can serve as a model for the younger siblings.
- Families will also have the option to "divide and conquer."
Staggered Return to School
There is a staggered return on the Wornall Campus; both the early childhood and lower schools begin school in half groups. The school has found that smaller class sizes facilitate children's smooth transition into their new class. Teachers use the first day to get to know your child while sharing classroom procedures. Families are encouraged to support the transition on the first day by stopping by to greet the teachers, see the classroom, drop-off supplies and finally say goodbye. Families may stay as long or as short as they would like but should leave by 9 a.m.
- Aug. 17 - Cohort A's first day with Stop-By and Drop-Off, from 8 to 9 a.m.
- Aug. 18 - Cohort B's first day with Stop-By and Drop-Off from 8 to 9 a.m.
Early Arrival -7:45 - 8:10 a.m.
The early childhood staff will be curbside each morning to welcome your child to school and walk them to their Early Room. You are welcome to walk your child to the Early Room – please be sure to park in the parking lot OR at Loose Park. The Early Room is outside on the early childhood playground. Your child should be dressed appropriately for early morning outside play. There is no charge for Early Room services.
Morning Carpool - 8:10-8:30 a.m.
- Parents dropping off in the carpool lane should enter through the 51st Street driveway. Morning carpool line drop-off is in the lane closest to school - the left lane when entering the campus.
- There are three designated spots for unloading. Please pull forward to the first open space.
- An early childhood staff person will help children out of their cars and walk them to their classrooms.
- To ease carpool congestion, you may also drop off K-5 siblings at the same time.
- The center lane is for passing and pulling away only. Always follow the security and school staff's safety instructions during arrival and dismissal.
If you choose to walk your child(ren) to the class, please park at Loose Park and use the designated crosswalk. Parents should leave the classrooms by 8:25 a.m.
Please walk your child to the front door and use the buzzer. An early childhood faculty/staff member will walk you child to class.
1 p.m. Dismissal- 12:45-1 p.m.
- Afternoon carpool pick-up is done from the lane closest to school.
- As you enter the carpool lane, flip down your visor so your attached name placard is visible through the windshield. Your name placard helps us to quickly identify you and have your child(ren) ready as you pull forward. (You will receive your name placard at Stop-By and Drop-Off.)
- Please stay in your car while early childhood staff help your child(ren) get safely and securely into your car.
- If you walk, please stand to the side of the fenced area (not in front of the fenced area) and an early childhood teacher will walk your child to you.
- NEVER take your child without notifying their classroom teacher.
3 p.m. Dismissal 2:50-3:20 p.m.
- 2:50-3:05 p.m. - early childhood students who do not have lower school siblings
- 3:10-3:30 p.m. - early childhood students with K-5 siblings
- All early childhood carpool pickups need to be done from the north/left lane, so teachers are not standing in traffic when they are putting children in car seats. Also, cars should never cross lanes in the pickup line, as this is extremely dangerous.
- All Wornall Campus siblings will stand together at dismissal time, so cars only stop once to pick up children. In most cases, this means that all siblings in a family will be stationed at the youngest child's dismissal spot (the only exception is second graders with siblings in third - fifth grade).
- As you enter the carpool lane flip down your visor so your attached name placard is visible through the windshield. This aids us in quickly identifying you and having your child(ren) ready for you as you pull forward. (You will receive your name placard at Stop By and Say Hi.)
- Please stay in your car while early childhood or lower school faculty and staff help your child(ren) get safely and securely into your car.
- Please do not arrive at school before 3:05 p.m. for dismissal pickup. In conjunction, under no circumstances should cars line up on 51st St. prior to 3:10 p.m. This is extremely unsafe, probably illegal and also leads to a great deal of frustration for our surrounding neighbors. Drivers are encouraged to circle around the block if the pickup lanes are full.
- If you walk, please stand to the side of the fenced area (not in front of the fenced area) and an early childhood teacher will walk your child to you.
Extended Day 3:10 to 6 p.m
We offer an after-school program from 3:10 to 3:30 p.m. The Extended Day program is a multi-age setting and is located in the art studio and an early years classroom. The teaching staff provides the children with age-appropriate activities, outdoor fun, arts, crafts and music. Parents need to complete the Extended Day Enrollment Forms for students to participate in this program.
Late Pick Up*
When you arrive past the times listed below, you are considered late.
- Morning Dismissal - no later than 1 p.m.
- Afternoon Dismissal - no later than 3:10 p.m.
- Extended Day Dismissal - no later than 6 p.m.
*Please understand that young children become anxious and worried when their parents are late picking them up. The teacher will bring your child to the front office if you are late. Your school account will be charged $1 per minute, per child.
Scheduled School Closures
Childcare is available (7:45 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.) for the following dates only. *
- Professional Day - Oct. 6
- Indigenous People's Day– Oct. 9
- Parent-Teacher Conferences – Oct. 27
- Thanksgiving Break - Nov. 20-21
- Winter Break - Dec. 18- 22 (first week of winter break)
- Martin Luther King Jr. Day - Jan. 15, 2024
- Professional Day - Feb. 16, 2024
- Presidents’ Day - Feb. 19, 2024
- Spring Break - March 11-22, 2024
Before each childcare day(s), Sara Dougherty, auxiliary programs manager, will send an email with a link where you may sign up for care. Any cancellations made after the deadline stated in the registration email will still be charged for prearranged staffing. Late reservations will incur an additional $20 fee.
Childcare will be available in a building to be determined. Please watch the newsletter for the location. Childcare for full days is from 7:45 a.m. until 5:30 p.m.
Additionally, if there are less than three children, services will have to be canceled.
Childcare is not available on these dates:
- Late Start Dates* (see below);
- Labor Day (Sept. 4);
- Thanksgiving Break (Nov. 22-24);
- The last Friday before Winter Break begins (Dec. 15);
- Second week of winter break (Dec. 25-Jan. 1); and
- The last day of school (May 24).
Late Start Days
There are six school-wide late start days when class begins at 10 a.m. These days are used to provide professional learning opportunities for all Pembroke Hill faculty and staff on such topics as teaching and learning, compliance and accreditation work. On late start days, carpool begins at 9:40 a.m. Because all faculty and staff will be involved in the school-wide professional learning sessions, we unfortunately are not able to offer childcare on these dates. Wornall Campus students may begin arriving on these days at 9:40 a.m.
- Sept. 7
- Nov. 2
- Dec. 7
- March 7, 2024
- April 4, 2024
- May 2, 2024
School Closings (Emergency/Weather Related)
Parents will receive an email, text message and voicemail about emergency school closures, including delayed starts. Please note that during high cell phone use time periods, the receipt of text messages may be delayed. Messages will also be placed on the school’s website, pembrokehill.org, Parent Portal and social media channels. Parents may call the school’s main number (816-936-1200) to hear a recording. Additionally, announcements will be made through local television, radio and news outlets. On busy news mornings, these announcements may take a while to actually air on these outlets. In the event no announcement is made, school will be in session.
The following sample schedules provide age-appropriate organized and structure for young children. All of these elements happen in a day, but the times for each depend on what is happening in “Project Work” or the needs of the children for the day. Teachers balance small group and large group activities, as well as quiet and active times.
|MORNING 8 A.M. - 1 P.M.
|AFTERNOON 1 - 3:10 P.M.
|EXTENDED DAY 3:10 - 6 P.M.
|Nap or Rest/Bathroom**
|Dismissal Or Day Continues In
Extended Day (See Extended Day)
|Outside or Movement
|Small Group Work
|Dismissal or Day Continues In
Classroom (See Afternoon)
* Resource classes: Spanish, Art Studio, Library, Music, P.E.
**Water and using the bathroom are available at all times for the children.
Arrival and Greeting
As children arrive, they follow a morning routine that typically includes greeting the teacher, putting belongings (coat, backpack, etc.) away into his/her cubby, checking in and washing hands. Parents may help their child become engaged in an activity before saying goodbye. Families are encouraged to share any applicable information that may affect the child's disposition for the day (the child went to bed late, didn't eat breakfast, mom is on a business trip this week, etc.).
This time is spent together as a large group. The children gather together in the meeting area and the teacher may:
- Review the day's schedule;
- Count morning children (1 p.m.), afternoon children (3 p.m.) and Extended Day children (6 p.m.);
- Lead a large group language, math, science or a social/emotional activity;
- Sing songs with the children;
- Listen as the children make a plan for where they will play and what they will do;
- Discuss projects, ask questions and encourage children to give each other ideas; or
- Prepare KWL charts, Venn diagrams and write down the children's hypothesis for "Project Work."
Lunch time is a valuable time to teach social graces and self-help skills.
The children take turns setting the table using napkins, dishes, glasses and silverware. They learn to say, “Please," and "Thank you,” “Please pass,” and “No, thank you.” They also practice conversational skills.
Lunch is served family-style. Eating family-style facilitates learning about healthy food choices. Everyone learns to serve themselves a little of each food at every meal. Teachers eat with the children.
Outside And Playground
The beautiful grounds of Pembroke Hill School offer early childhood children a number of places to play, explore and learn about the natural world. There are three classic playgrounds (the early childhood playground, sand playground and kindergarten playground) providing spaces for climbing, sliding, riding, swinging and digging. The courtyard, Wornall Campus fields and Founders Hall hill are additional areas where children love to run, look for bugs, play with balls and scarves, or joyfully roll down the hill. Preschool, prekindergarten and second semester early years children also visit Loose Park with the Rose Garden, duck pond and many treed and open areas.
Rest and naps are an important part of child development. Research suggests that physical and mental development takes place when children sleep - both at night and during the day. Additionally, children who nap have longer attention spans and tend to sleep longer and more peacefully at night. All children who stay past 1 p.m., have a 30-minute rest/quiet time. After 30 minutes, children who have not fallen asleep may select from a variety of quiet time activities.
Small Group Time
Small group time facilitates the development of cooperative and collaborative skills as well as supporting language development. Children work in small groups for art studio and project work. These small groups provide opportunities for the teacher to introduce new materials, facilitate conversations and problem-solving. The teacher serves as a model of collaboration and as a facilitator. By providing various opportunities for small group work, we send the message that cooperation and relationships are valued.
Snacks are at set times in early years and the whole class eats together. Preschool and prekindergarten snacks are open for a 45-minute time period, and children can eat when they are ready.
Uninterrupted Play Time
Research shows child-directed, unstructured play supports a child's social, emotional and cognitive development. Free play is important because it is the way children have been wired to learn. In order for children to reach a higher level of thinking they need at least 90 minutes of continual play to fully engage critical thinking skills. Because teachers have thoughtfully and carefully selected all materials for the classroom, wherever a child plays there are opportunities to learn. Children may choose from block building, dress-up play, art, science, writing, literacy, sensory, manipulatives and music learning areas in the classrooms.
Teachers use this time to facilitate the children’s learning as well as observe, document and assess developmental learning. Teachers use these observations to plan future activities and to select additional materials to extend learning.
Pembroke Hill has a Bookstore on the Ward Parkway Campus where parents can purchase spirit wear, such as T-shirts, sweats and polo shirts with the school name and logo for children to wear on Spirit Day with jeans or shorts.
Dressing For School
Please dress children for play. Comfortable, inexpensive clothing and tennis shoes are best. Daily classroom work includes not only using markers, paints and clay, but many other educational, but messy materials. We use mostly washable markers and paint, but we do have permanent black pens and watercolor markers. (Do not apply Spray And Wash to the clothing as this sets washable markers and paints.) Though the children are encouraged to wear smocks, it is not a guarantee that your child's clothes will stay clean. Crocs, jellies, flip flops and sandals do not stay on the children's feet and make outside play dangerous! Please always have a pair of tennis shoes for outdoor play.
All children need to bring an extra set of clothing: underwear, pants, shirt and socks. Clothing is stored in a child's cubby above his or her coat hook. We do have accidents and spills. Please remember to put the child's first, middle and last initials on his or her clothing and bedding, in case there are duplicates.
Classes go outside every day unless there is severe weather, "ozone alert" days or the wind chill temperature is below 15 degrees. Please be sure to provide appropriate outside weather clothing. At the beginning of school, stock your child's cubby with a sun hat, boots and raincoat. As the days turn cooler, be sure your child has a winter hat and mittens/gloves. Snow boots and snowsuits can either be left in your child's cubby or brought to school whenever it is cold, or there is snow on the ground.
Lost And Found
Please mark all your child's belongings with his/her name. If an item becomes lost, you may check with the teacher and look through the lost-and-found basket in the entry hall beside the water fountain.
All children have their own cubby where they can put their coats, hats, boots and backpacks. The cubbies are labeled with names and/or pictures.
Raincoat and Boots
We ask that each child brings a set of rain boots and a raincoat to leave at school for outdoor play.
Rest Mats Or Blankets
Each child who stays past 1 p.m. will need a small sleeping bag labeled with their name for rest time. Each child has their own plastic-covered floor mat that the school provides. Children's sleeping bags will be sent home weekly for cleaning.
Each child needs to bring two boxes of soft tissues for the classroom.
Children are encouraged to clean their own faces after snacks and lunch using a baby wipe. Your teacher will send home a list detailing the number of boxes to bring to school. For children who are not toilet trained, please bring in a box of wipes every other week or per the teacher's request.
- Recruiting and supporting parent volunteers to serve as officers for the council.
- Recruiting and supporting parent volunteers to serve as room parents from every grade. Room parents help with:
- New family hospitality
- Class parties
- Communicating with their class on a regular basis on happenings at the school.
- Recruiting and supporting parent volunteers to serve as representatives in the four standing committees of the Parents Association:
- Arts Council
- International Club
- Parents Inclusion Council
- Raider Club
- Recruiting and supporting parent coordinators for: Wonderful Wednesdays for teachers
The council will have four meetings during the school year. All officers, room parents and the principal attend these monthly meetings.
- Meeting dates are posted on the school calendar.
- A meeting reminder with an agenda, the time and place of the meeting will be sent home with your daily journal.
- All parents are welcome to attend.
Before leaving home, children should be fed and dressed for the weather (jacket, winter coat, hat, gloves, rain gear, etc.) and backpacks zipped. It is very important that parents develop a “morning goodbye ritual” in advance. This helps for a smoother arrival and drop off.
If separation is a problem, please follow the lead and advice of our staff. They are trained to deal with these situations and have many strategies depending on the issue. Please do not use cell phones at this time.
When it is time to leave, follow the “good-bye ritual” you planned and discussed with your child. A good-bye ritual is a consistent, predictable pattern that helps your child transition into the classroom each morning. This ritual may include goodbye hugs and kisses at the door or staying until your child has completed the morning check-in routine. Please be sure to say "goodbye" with a quick hug and a reassuring smile before leaving.
If a child has separation anxiety problems, and this happens at all ages and stages, parents should listen to the teachers and remember that consistency is vital. Separation anxiety can occur when:
- Children are younger and it takes longer for them to accept a parent leaving; or
- There are changes at home, i.e., moving to a new home, a new baby, visitors in the home for a short period, not feeling well, not getting enough sleep.
While separation anxiety is emotionally difficult for both the child and parent the majority of time, with the teacher’s help, children become engaged in activity before parents leave the building. When families and teachers work together, we are able to support children through difficult times.
The Communication section includes information on:
- Class Communication
- Family Conferences
- Social Media
- Telephone Calls/Messages
- Website/Parent Portal
We are dedicated to open and honest communication with our families and students. It is important to us to hear from parents regularly. If parents have questions or concerns about our program, they should not hesitate to contact their child’s teacher or division head. As in any school, there are times when we may disagree over policies and procedures, and we want to be sure our families understand the best way to deal with a problem or concern.
The school encourages parents to start with their child's teacher. If they do not feel the conflict has been resolved, then they and the teacher should bring the issue to the division head. If they still cannot resolve the problem, they will discuss it with the head of school. Please understand that the school honors this organizational flow, and parents will be sent to the appropriate person.
Parents must contact their teacher by phone or email by 8:45 a.m., so we can have an accurate count for snack and lunch. Also, please tell the teacher if a child is ill or has head lice. If the illness is contagious, we must notify the other parents as soon as possible.
If your contact information changes (including email) please log into the Parent Portal to update your contact information.
Formal conferences are scheduled early in November and April. These conferences give you a chance to talk with your child’s teacher about their progress and goals. Your child’s learning and development is shared at these conferences. Additional parent conferences may occur whenever a parent or a teacher feels that communication is necessary. These conferences may take place in person or by telephone. Please ask that specific resource teachers or the principal be present if needed. Arrival and dismissal, field trips, class parties and other events are not the appropriate times for conferencing with teachers.
Parents are encouraged to maintain open communication with their child’s teacher and early childhood school division head throughout the year.
Pembroke Hill School communicates about school activities, classes and programs through several popular social media outlets.
All staff members have phones and voicemail. Parents may contact the teacher by his/her direct line, through the administrative assistant or the main school number. If they are unavailable to talk, please leave a message and they will return the call as soon as possible. Teachers are generally not able to answer phones during the morning. In case of an emergency, please call administrative assistant Kasey Reaves, 816-936-1372, to relay a message to the teacher.
Our website and Parent Portal are the main information outlets for the school. You will find school events, athletic events and general information about the school on the website. In the Parent Portal, accessed through the website, parents will find class information, the parent and student directory, school forms and more.
The Security, Safety & Discipline section includes information on:
- Crisis Plans
- Fire, Lockdown And Tornado Drills
- Parents Out Of Town
- Sign-In Procedure For Parents And Visitors
- Weapons Policy
- Health Safety
- Supplemental Student Insurance
- Outdoor Play Safety Policy
- Procedures For Incidents Involving Blood Exposure
- Severe Weather Closing
- Community Code Of Conduct
- Philosophy Of School Discipline
- Early Childhood Code Of Conduct
- Bullying Policy
We take our responsibility concerning your child's safety very seriously.
- We are ever vigilant and always remain in the appropriate ratios in and around our campus.
- All the doors to our building are locked except at drop-off and pick-up times, when security is present.
- All visitors must check in at the school office.
- All our employees are screened through the Missouri Family Child Care Registry and our human resources department also runs a background check upon hire.
- Faculty members have a cell phone with them whenever they are out of the building with children.
- All employees have identification cards with emergency phone numbers on them.
- Anyone picking up a child who is not part of the immediate family or pick-up routine must be listed on your child’s emergency sheet and have a photo ID.
- The school has a transportation policy that requires parental permission for students to be transported by bus to school-sponsored events.
- Security officers are available on both campuses. A security officer is in the driveway/parking lot area during drop-off and pick-up times.
- An adult greets the children as they arrive at drop-off and walks each student to their car at pick-up time.
- We have in place a school-wide lock down procedure should a concern arise on campus.
The early childhood division has developed a crisis plan for the building, which includes having crisis kits in each room. All team members receive training on implementing this plan.
Fire, Lock Down And Tornado Drills
Fire, lock down and tornado drills are scheduled monthly at various times of the day. Parents are encouraged to practice fire and tornado drills at home. Your child may come home and discuss the drills with you. If you have concerns about your child participating or wish to know specific procedures, please contact the division head. Evacuation routes are posted in each classroom for fire and tornado drills. We do go to the basement of our building for tornado drills.
When parents are out-of-town, the school should be notified in writing of the dates, the name and telephone number of the adult responsible for the child during the parents’ absences. Please give appropriate emergency phone numbers to the building administrative assistant and homeroom teacher.
Sign-In Procedures For Parents And Visitors
- Any time you come to your child’s classroom for the purpose of staying awhile, please sign into the book located in the administrative assistant's office in the front entryway. You will receive a parent/visitor tag to wear while in the building. This is the same for grandparents.
- Because of our excellent reputation as a Reggio Emilia-inspired early childhood school we have students, administrators, teachers and others who visit our school. All of the student teachers have been background screened, have a tuberculosis test and are given an orientation before working in our classrooms. They fully understand the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) Code of Ethics and agree to abide by the code.
No student or visitor to campus or school-sponsored functions regardless of where held may possess, transport, display, offer for sale, barter, use, threaten to use or exchange any gun, bomb, knife or other dangerous weapon, or any object that might have a reasonable “look-alike” resemblance to a dangerous weapon. A dangerous weapon may be defined as any object that may cause a serious injury or fatal wound. Uniformed members of law enforcement may carry a visible weapon.
Violations of this policy will result in discipline consequences and could include notification of the Kansas City, Mo., Police Department and expulsion.
If your child sustains an injury at school, you will receive a copy of an accident report which includes details of the accident and the first aid/care your child received.
Other than for minor injuries, your child’s teacher or the school nurse will call to notify you. You will always be called when the accident involves the head or face. We will give you the school nurse’s appraisal, but want you to make the decision on how to proceed. In the event of a serious accident, we will call 911 immediately. Our staff is trained in CPR and first aid.
Supplemental Student Insurance
A supplemental student accident insurance policy is provided to assist families with out-of-pocket expenses resulting from an injury at school or at official school events. The policy is structured to cover expenses after existing insurance policies have responded. When an injury occurs that is likely to result in the family seeking medical treatment (i.e. emergency room or doctor’s visit), a claim form will be sent along with a copy of the student accident report. Claims need to be filed directly with the policy administrator within 90 days of the injury. Please contact the early childhood school division head’s office. if you did not receive a claim form for an injury that required professional medical treatment. If you have questions about the policy itself, please contact Sandy Smith, director of finance.
Biting is a natural developmental stage for many children. It is most common between 13- and 24-months of age, however young preschool children will occasionally bite. The safety of the children at the school is our primary concern. The school's biting policy addresses the actions teachers and staff will take if a biting incident occurs.
Children bite other toddlers for many different reasons. A child might be teething or overly tired and frustrated. He or she might be experimenting or trying to get the attention of the teacher or their peers. Young children can be impulsive. Sometimes biting occurs for no apparent reason. The school will encourage the children to "use their words" if they become angry or frustrated. The staff members will maintain a close and constant supervision of the children at all times.
The following steps will be taken if a biting incident occurs at our school:
- The biting will be interrupted with a firm "No…biting hurts. It is not okay to bite people!"
- Teachers will stay calm and will not overreact.
- The bitten child will be comforted.
- Teachers will remove the biter from the situation.
- The wound of the bitten child shall be assessed and cleansed with soap and water. If it is determined that there was blood exposure, further steps need to be taken as outlined below: "Procedure For Incidents Involving Blood Exposure."
- The biter will be encouraged to help comfort the child who was bitten - getting an ice pack, using gentle touches, etc.
- The teacher will talk with both children to determine the cause and then help the children problem solve. Teachers will consistently use the following phrases to help children during a conflict: "This is a safe school." "How does ______ feel?" "Use your words." "Listen to your friend's words." and "Get a teacher when you need help."
- Teachers will shadow a child (keep the child close) after two biting incidents.
- Confidentiality of all children involved will be maintained.
- The parents of both children will be notified of the biting incident. The appropriate forms will be filled out (Incident Report) and sent home and to the school nurse’s office.
- This is a developmental stage, and we do not remove children from the classroom who bite.
Outdoor Play Safety Policy
The outdoors is the very best place for children to practice and master emerging large motor skills. Outside play supports young children’s cognitive and social development; and children develop an understanding and appreciation of nature through daily outside play. Because we value time spent outside, our students play outdoors daily when weather and air quality conditions do not pose a significant health risk. Children will not play outside when the wind chill is at or below 15 degrees, there is an extreme heat index as identified by the National Weather Service, air quality is poor or there is thunder/lightning.
Children shall be protected from the sun by using shade, sun-protective clothing and sunscreen with UVB-ray and UVA-ray protection of SPF 30 or higher. We ask that parents apply sunscreen before sending children to school in the morning. Teachers will reapply sunscreen as needed. Please send sunscreen labeled with your child's name in permanent marker. We will apply sunscreen to children using gloves. Sunscreen sticks are helpful for the facial area.
In warm weather, children will be well-hydrated and encouraged to drink plenty of water. Children’s clothing in warm weather should be light colored, lightweight and limited to one layer of absorbent material to facilitate the evaporation of sweat. Children should also wear hats, long sleeves and pants if playing outdoors between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m.
When temperatures exceed 95 degrees (actual or heat index), teachers will limit outside time. When outside, teachers will be sure that children take frequent breaks in the shade and that there is water available to keep children hydrated. Teachers will remain vigilant for signs that a child is becoming overheated.
Air quality conditions that pose a significant health risk shall be identified by announcements from local health authorities or through ozone alerts. Such air quality conditions shall require that children remain indoors where air conditioners ventilate indoor air to the outdoors. Children with respiratory health problems, such as asthma, shall not play outdoors when local health authorities announce that the air quality is approaching unhealthy levels.
In cold weather, children’s clothing shall be layered and dry. Coats, hats, gloves, snow pants or suits are required if the temperature is below 20 degrees F. Caregivers shall check children’s extremities at least every 15 minutes when children are outside in cold weather.
Procedure For Incidents Involving Blood Exposure
An exposure is defined as contact with blood or bodily fluids, to which universal precautions apply such as:
- An injury to the skin or mucous membranes (e.g. cut with a sharp object); or
- If it is a bite, the bitten area should continue to be observed by parents and teachers for signs of infection.
A human bite will rarely transmit a bacterial infection if proper first aid is given. Hepatitis B and HIV can potentially be transmitted during a human bite if the skin is broken and a blood exchange occurs. When a bite or injury occurring in the early childhood setting involves a break in the skin and potential blood exposure, the school will follow the guidelines set forth by the Jackson County Health Department.
Severe Weather Closing
Announcements concerning school closings will be made by 6:15 a.m. Parents will receive an email, text message and voicemail about school closures. Please note that during high cell phone use time periods, the receipt of text messages may be delayed. Messages will also be placed on the school’s website, pembrokehill.org, school portals and social media channels. Parents may call the school’s main number (816-936-1200) to hear a recording. Additionally, announcements will be made through local television, radio and news outlets. On busy news mornings, these announcements may take a while to actually air on these outlets. In the event no announcement is made, school will be in session. Delayed starts will be announced as well.
Early Childhood Code of Conduct
As members of the Pembroke Hill School community, we desire to promote an environment in which all individuals can realize their greatest potential. To achieve this goal, we expect students to learn about, recognize and work to uphold the essential values of respect, compassion and integrity. We should always act in accordance with these guiding values:
- Be honest in their behavior;
- Abide by all school rules;
- Respect the property of others, including the school’s property; and
- Treat other members of the school community with civility and respect, and avoid actions that are hurtful to others.
Students are expected to learn to follow these guidelines and to learn how to engage in behavior that is consistent with the school’s motto of Freedom With Responsibility. Students should also recognize that there are other rules necessary for the effective functioning of this community.
Philosophy of Student Discipline
Pembroke Hill’s discipline philosophy for students is a developmental process. As an educational institution, we view discipline as a teaching and learning opportunity with a focus on restoring any harm caused. As our students progress from early years through senior year, we model our core values and provide intentional instruction regarding the behavioral expectations of our community. Our students' ability to demonstrate the expectations independently grows over time. In general, we engage students in conversation, apply natural and/or logical consequences, and encourage both reflection and restoration.
When a student’s behavior causes harm (physical, mental or emotional) and/or significantly disrupts the learning environment, we are compelled to consider the safety of our community and take appropriate action. While we value families as partners in their child’s education, the school plays the primary decision-making role in all disciplinary matters. In recommending or determining disciplinary action, the administration may consider the student’s present demeanor and past disciplinary record, the nature of the infraction, the severity of any damage, injury or harm resulting therefrom, while taking into account the best interest of the school. If deemed appropriate, the administration may choose to impose one or more of the following actions that are applied with a restorative lens:
- Restorative acts (e.g., apology, service to others, etc.)
- Loss of privileges
- A probationary period
- Required additional services outside of the school (e.g., counseling or evaluation)
- Contract hold or non-renewal of contract
- Other action determined appropriate by the school
- Temporary removal from the classroom or the school community
- Permanent separation from the school community
Disciplinary actions are taken in private because it is the school’s longstanding practice to maintain confidentiality. Confidentiality balances our commitment to helping individuals learn from their mistakes, because we are educators above all else, and promoting a culture of open and timely discussion of important and challenging topics.
This plan is intended (1) to create an inclusive environment for all students; (2) to reduce bullying among our students; (3) to encourage students and their parents to come forward promptly whenever a student is subject to conduct that is prohibited by this or any other school policy; and (4) to implement appropriate discipline and other corrective measures when they are found to be warranted.
General Policy Against Bullying And Retaliation
Bullying in any shape or form (verbal, physical, electronic, etc.) at Pembroke Hill is prohibited on any school grounds and at school-sponsored events, activities, functions and programs. This prohibition also extends beyond the grounds between Pembroke Hill students, particularly if the behavior off-campus disrupts the daily educational process within the school community.
What Constitutes Bullying
A person is bullied when they are exposed, repeatedly and over time, to negative actions on the part of one or more other persons, and they have difficulty defending themself. This action:
- Causes physical or emotional harm to the targeted student or damage to the targeted student’s property;
- Places the targeted student in reasonable fear of themself, or of damage to his or her property;
- Creates a distracting, antagonistic environment at school for the targeted student;
- Infringes on the rights of the targeted student at school; and
- Materially and substantially disrupts the educational process or the orderly operation of the school.
Reporting An Act Of Bullying Or Retaliation
When a complaint of bullying or retaliation is brought to the school’s attention, an assessment is made as to whether any initial steps need to be taken to protect the well-being of students and to prevent disruption of their learning environment while the investigation is being conducted.
Any student who is the target, has witnessed an incident or otherwise has relevant information about bullying or retaliation is encouraged to report the matter. Students who knowingly make false reports of bullying or retaliation will be subject to disciplinary action.
When a bullying incident is reported, promises of confidentiality cannot be guaranteed, as it is far more difficult to determine the facts of what occurred if complaints are made anonymously.
The school releases information concerning complaints of bullying and retaliation, and the disciplinary action taken only on a legitimate, need-to-know basis. Reports can be made to any faculty or staff, and it is encouraged for reports to include the administration.
After a report has been made, the staff/administration will inform appropriate parties of the process of investigating, finding a resolution and communicating.
The Health section includes information on:
- School Nurse
- Medical Documentation & Forms
- Prescription Medications
- Allergies & Emergency Medication
- COVID-19 Information
- Common Sense Parenting & Health Promotion
- Head Lice Policy
- Child Abuse & Neglect Policy
The school nurse will be available from 7:45 a.m. to 3:15 p.m. in the Mellon Building to provide medical services to students, including health appraisals, health education, and first aid. Our staff has CPR, asthma, EpiPen, blood-borne pathogen and first aid training.
School Nurse Contact Information:
- Phone Number: 816-936-1351
- Email: email@example.com
- Fax: 816-936-1378
Immunization Records: The Missouri Department Of Health requires that we have a copy of immunization records on or before the first day of school. The school does not provide a specific form for this. Please ask your physician's office to provide you with a record of your child's immunizations and send that record to the school. Thank you for your help in getting these to the school on or before the first day.
Emergency/Transportation/Medical Information: Parents provide this information each year in the Household Profile Update section in the Parent Portal, located in the top left corner under My Portal. The Household Profile Update allows parents to update their child's health, emergency contacts, and transportation information.
Physical Exams: Physical/medical examinations are required at the following intervals:
- Early Childhood - annually
- Third Grade
- Fifth Grade
All forms must be returned to the nurse’s office by Aug. 1. In the Parent Magnus Health Portal, all documents are posted on the school’s website, www.pembrokehill.org. Once completed, please keep a record at home and upload a copy to Magnus Health.
Medication administration to students during school hours shall be restricted to necessary medication that cannot be given on an alternative schedule. Parents should always administer the first dose of new medicine. Please notify the nurse of a new medication or dosage changes.
For prescription medicine to be administered at school, it must be in a pharmacy container with a label affixed at the pharmacy with the following information:
- Name of student;
- Name of medication;
- Name of physician;
- Date of purchase; and
- Dosage, route, and schedule of administration.
In some cases, written orders from the student's physician may be necessary. These orders should be shared with the school nurse as soon as possible.
When the above conditions are met, medication administration to a student will be limited to the school nurse or other designated person. A parent or guardian must bring the medication to the nurse’s office. A parent or adult designee must bring prescription refills to the nurse’s office.
Over-The-Counter Medication: If you would like your children to receive over-the-counter medications, such as acetaminophen, ibuprofen, or Benadryl, please update the Over-The- Counter Medications section under Vital Health Records in Magnus Health. No telephone calls will be made or accepted for authorization. These medications are given according to the written instructions on the label, i.e., the child’s age and weight. Medication requests that exceed the recommended dose or guideline require written permission from your pediatrician.
Parent/guardian may be notified if over-the-counter medicine is administered or if sought by a student but not administered due to nursing judgment. Certain over-the-counter medications can mask pain or other symptoms or delay in diagnosis/treatment of an underlying health problem. The overuse of these medications may also lead to liver or kidney damage, or gastrointestinal complications.
Over-the-counter medications brought from home and administered at school must be in an original, unopened container. A licensed care provider must sign a written order with the same prescription medication information.
By law and school policy, nurses are prohibited from administering homeopathic remedies, nutritional supplements and essential oils.
The parents/guardians of the student assume responsibility for informing school personnel of any change to the student’s health or medication regimen.
If your child has severe food or other allergies, we must be aware by the first day of school or the first school day following diagnosis. Please submit the form below from the doctor so we can safely care for your student.
If your child’s allergy requires an EpiPen, please send two EpiPens to school with your child. The school nurse will keep one in your student’s cubby in the nurse’s office, and the other will need to be on your student at all times. The EpiPen must be labeled with the original container and labeled from the pharmacy.
If your child has asthma, please notify the teacher and complete and submit an Asthma Action Plan to the school nurse. For your child to use an inhaler daily or as needed, we must have a Student Asthma Action Form signed by your child’s physician and you. Dosage change requires a written note signed by the doctor.
- A fever of 100 degrees or higher;
- Vomiting more than once or in combination with another symptom;
- Unknown rash or bumps;
- Mattered, red or tearing eyes;
- Sore throat or trouble swallowing;
- Headache and stiff neck;
- Severe cough to the point of choking;
- Persistent/disruptive cough;
- Unusual or tea-colored urine;
- Infected or crusty patch of skin;
- Severe itching in case of head or body lice;
- Grey or white stools;
- Are behaving cranky or less active as usual;
- Cries or is fussy for an unusual amount of time;
- or Loss of appetite.
When the school nurse contacts you that your child is sick, please arrange to pick up your child within 45 minutes. This helps the school decrease the spread of germs. Children may return when free of the above symptoms for 24 hours. These guidelines are for the well-being and protection of your child and their classmates.
The infection control office will continue to provide COVID-19 mitigations per CDC guidelines as they apply to the learning environment. Changes in Covid-19 mitigations will be communicated to families, faculty, and staff via email as needed.
Please keep children home until they are fever-free without medications for 24 hours. This reduces sharing germs, giving your child extra time to rest and fight off the illness.
Keep children home if they have had diarrhea or are vomiting. Usually, they feel physically drained if they have had these symptoms. They may want to return to school when symptom-free after 24 hours. Please consider keeping them home to regain their strength. Keeping students home for an extra day is a healthy investment for you and them.
When a child is identified with having active head lice at school, the child’s parent/guardian is notified and provided with information about treatment. Students will be sent home at the end of the day and may return to school after receiving treatment at home. School nurses will work with families to ensure proper treatment and management of head lice. Pembroke Hill follows the recommendation of the American Academy of Pediatrics and does not exclude students from school because of head lice or nits.
The school nurse will inform parents/guardians when there is an unusual clustering of head lice cases in a particular classroom, grade level, or building. Continued communication and collaboration with the school nurse will reduce the stigma of head lice, clarify myths, and provide accurate information about effective treatment options.
Head Lice Resources
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
The safety of our children is of utmost importance to us. All PHS faculty and staff members are mandated reporters of any suspected abuse or neglect and must comply with the Missouri Child Abuse and Neglect laws. PHS will report any physical, sexual, or verbal abuse and/or negligence of a child to the Missouri Division Of Family Services Child Abuse Hotline.
The School & Classroom Events section includes information on:
- Back-To-School BBQ
- Back-To-School Night
- Celebrations, Birthdays & Parties
- Family Conferences
- Ghost Walk/Halloween Parade
- Field Trips
- May Day
- Parent Coffees & Meetings
- Picture Day
- Prekindergarten Bridging Ceremony
- Project Culmination Event
- Religious Observation Policy
This event is scheduled soon after school begins. The barbeque is followed by an athletic competition – usually a varsity football or varsity soccer game - on the Stadium Field. All parents and children are encouraged to attend this event.
Our Back-To-School Night will be on Sept. 6, 6:30-8 p.m.; this evening is for parents only.
Birthdays are an opportunity for the classroom community to recognize and celebrate each child as an individual. Celebration traditions are unique in each of our classroom communities and can vary from year to year. Please contact your teacher to schedule your child's celebration. Because of food allergies, the teacher must approve snacks for the celebration. Please do not have flower arrangements or balloon bouquets delivered to school.
Please do not distribute birthday party invitations at school. Mail them to each child's home using the family directory located in the Parent Portal. Parents are encouraged to include all of the children from the classroom.
Party planners for each classroom must contact the teacher before making any party plans. They will be glad to help you plan an appropriate party for the age of children in the class.
Due to food allergies in our building, teachers must be consulted about party snacks, which must include a healthy element. Our teachers are the perfect resource for ideas concerning snacks, games and activities. Once the party planner and the teacher have determined a date and time, the division's administrative assistant should be contacted at 816-936-1372 so she can put it on the master calendar.
- Please do not provide decorations or use confetti, popcorn, balloons, silly string or anything else that will be hard to clean up.
- Please do not have flower arrangements or balloon bouquets delivered to school.
- Surprise parties for teachers/assistants need to include notification to the school office to assure there is not a conflict with date/time of other school functions.
- We would greatly appreciate parents making childcare arrangements for siblings on party days. Classrooms are not always safe for young children, and strollers take up space. If that is impossible, the room parent coordinator can ask the teacher to create a space in the room where the siblings can play, and parents of the children can rotate watching them and participating in the party.
Each early childhood class will have an end-of-the-year celebration in May. Parents and children watch a video of their time together. Teachers will notify parents of the date and time.
Family conferences are an important aspect of our early childhood program. This is a time for teachers and families to come together to reflect on a child’s growth and development as well as set goals to support continued learning. A detailed assessment and portfolio will be shared with the family at this time. Conferences are scheduled twice a year. School is closed on Nov. 6 for family conferences. Conferences are scheduled throughout the month of April. Families or teachers may schedule additional meetings through the school year to meet the needs of individual children and/or families
Early years generally do not take off-campus field trips other than the occasional second semester trip to Loose Park.
Preschool and prekindergarten classes may take two or more field trips per year. We use the school vans or buses equipped with seat belts. Only faculty and staff of PHS drive the school vans; parent volunteers may follow in their cars. The children must be in the appropriate child safety seat for the trip. The preschool and prekindergarten classes may also take walking trips to the Country Club Plaza and post office. Families provide permission for children to go on field trips by completing the necessary forms accessed through the Parent Portal on the website.
Parents who volunteer for field trips must make other arrangements for siblings. Total concentration on the children is a must. Parents are asked to turn off cell phones and refrain from texting while supervising children on field trips.
Students in preschool through second grade have a great time during our Ghost Walk in the courtyard. Preschool and prekindergarten children should arrive in their costumes. The children parade around the inside courtyard, and parents who attend encircle the outside of the sidewalks. The children stop for a group picture on the Dining Hall steps. Early years children do not participate in this event.
The event is scheduled for May 1, 2024 at 1:30 p.m. (rain date May 2). Preschool and prekindergarten children participate. Early years children do not participate. The school will provide each child a Robin Hood costume.
Prekindergarten children are asked to bring a bouquet of flowers to present to the May Day queen and her court. Children sit with their classes and teachers. Please notify the teacher if you wish to take your child home immediately following the event. It is imperative that you tell the teacher before leaving with your child.
Parent coffees are family education events which precede most Early Childhood Council meetings. Our knowledgeable staff as well as guest speakers present on topics which are selected to support parenting and the understanding of our early childhood program. Past topics have included: “What is project work?” “Supporting sensory processing,” “Preparing your child for the path,” and the “Reggio Approach.” Topics are announced well in advance of each coffee.
Parent meetings will be held as needed to discuss project work or parent education topics.
In the fall, a photographer will take each child’s photo for the yearbook. If a child misses photo day, there will be a make-up day. Parents may choose to purchase these photos. However, every child’s photo will be included in the yearbook whether photos are purchased or not. Each child will receive a yearbook the last week of school.
Parents are invited to the Pembroke Hill prekindergarten bridging ceremony on May 22, 2024. This is a joyful and sweet celebration to represent the transition from the early childhood division to the lower school division. Invitations are limited to parents in order to assure the ceremony doesn't become an intimidating and scary experience for the children. Because our desire is to keep the bridging ceremony pure and the focus on the children, please do not bring flowers, balloons or gifts to the ceremony. However, you are welcome to bring cameras, smiles and perhaps a tissue if you are prone to shed sentimental tears.
Classes may have culminating events with families at the end of a project. This is a time for the children to share what they have studied and learned.
Pembroke Hill recognizes that the student body includes adherents of many faiths, and that observance of major religious holidays is an important facet of practicing one's religion. In consideration of these holidays, teachers and administrators shall be respectful when scheduling activities. While absences due to religious holidays will be excused, we kindly ask that parents notify the school at least 48 hours in advance.
The Student Services section includes information on:
The early childhood counselor serves students’ social and emotional needs in early years through prekindergarten. The counselor also assists students with resolving peer conflicts, supports the prekindergarten to kindergarten, assists students in dealing with a family crisis, coordinates the PHS character education program and teaches guidance lessons. The counselor also holds individual parent conferences when necessary, plans and leads parent education activities throughout the school year and helps design and implement individual behavior plans for students. Finally, the early childhood counselor serves as part of the early childhood leadership team along with the Wornall Campus assistant head and the instructional coach.
Speech, hearing and occupational therapy, and screenings are offered each fall to students recommended for screening by their classroom teachers. The school covers the cost of these screenings. A speech pathologist and an occupational therapist from St. Luke's Hospital work on the Wornall Campus. If your child should need speech or occupational therapy, time may be arranged for during school hours. Payment for work with the speech pathologist and occupational therapist will be arranged through St. Luke's Hospital.