|Frequently Asked Questions|
What will my child need to bring?
We keep the children pretty busy throughout the summer. Each day they will have the opportunity to swim in the pool, play outside, etc., so please help them be prepared for different activities and different weather!
The following items are needed: * sunscreen
* swimsuit and towel
* warm clothing (sweats, jacket)
* a water bottle
* athletic shoes (sandals are horrible for running around!)
* a change of clothing
* a backpack or bag to store their belongings.
Also, the pool ranges from 3-1/2 feet to 12 feet deep, so please send a life jacket if you think your child needs one. No other life jackets will be available. Feel free to send other items your child may need.
Unless you receive a note from the staff stating otherwise , please do NOT send:
- toys from home (they may get lost or stolen)
- “floaties” or float rings (only life jackets are allowed in the pool)
- skateboards, bicycles or skates
- electronics such as laptops, ipads or video games.
There may be some field trips where gift shops are available or children may bring money, but as a general rule, money should not be brought to our program.
Please label all items, and check the lost and found often!
How can I make this an easy transition for my anxious child?
You can do a few of things:
1. One is to read through all of the information available on our website. We will do our best to provide the information you and your child needs to start the summer off right.
2. Call us! As the start date approaches, we can tell you other kids that are signed up for your child's room.
3. And this is important: Attend our KICK OFF DINNER! This annual event, which is scheduled for the Thursday before the start date (June 7, 2012), from 5:30 - 6:30 pm, is held in the Middle School Cafeteria. You and your family are invited to come, eat a casual, sloppy joe dinner, meet our staff and tour our rooms at the Middle School. All families enrolled in summer Middle School programs are invited to this free event! If you are new to our program, it is especially important for your child to get a preview of the rooms and staff.
What about meals?
The Free Summer Food Program, offering free breakfast and lunch to anyone 18 and younger, will operate beginning our first day and typically continues until the end of July. We will start bringing the children to breakfast at 8:00 am, so you must bring your child by 8:00 am if you want us to take them to breakfast. They stop serving at 8:45 am. We take the kids to lunch beginning at 11:00 am, youngest groups first.
When you sign up your child for activities, keep in mind that lunches are only available from 11:00 am until 12:45 pm. It is a federal policy that food cannot be removed from the cafeteria, so your child must be in the cafeteria long enough to eat lunch. Be sure they have enough time in their schedule each day!
We provide an afternoon snack throughout the program. The snack includes one serving from two different food groups and always includes either 100% juice or milk. When the Free Summer Food Program ends, we will provide morning snacks as well.
We will put up lots of notices when the Food Program is about to end so that parents remember to start sending lunches!
When will the kids swim?
Each Monday through Thursday, children will have the opportunity to swim in the Middle School pool. Be sure to send a swimsuit and towel each day. We will have two lifeguards working during all swimming times and numbers in the pool will be limited.
NOTE: Children with limited swimming skills should wear life jackets that parents must provide. They should be labeled and must fit correctly to be useful.
Floaties and water wings are NOT permitted in the pool. Alternative activities will be available for children who do not wish to swim.
Swimming schedules will vary somewhat, but each room will have a couple of morning swim times and a couple of afternoon swim times. Between swimming lessons, our program and the Bemidji Summer Learning Program, the pool is booked during the summer!
Field trips often include an opportunity to swim, so watch the field trip schedule for items to bring. We attempt to schedule lake swimming after the water warms up but before swimmer's itch begins, but those dates are not always predictable. Be sure to send sunscreen on these days.
My child is registered. Do you need any other paperwork?
Yes. There are a few situations that will require more paperwork from you. All of these forms are available from the "Forms" link at left. Forms described below that may be needed include:
- Activity Transport Forms to request that we get your child to an activity,
- Medication Forms to request that we administer medication to your child, including epipens and inhalers,
- Emergency Response Plan, if your child has a life threatening health condition,
- Special Diet statement if you need to list foods that your child cannot eat.
- Special Needs Information to provide us with additional information to help your child be successful, and
- Scholarship Forms to request a fee discount.
Transportation to Community Activities: Many organizations offer summer activities for elementary and middle school aged youth. If you sign your child up for one of these separate activities and need us to make sure they get to the activity, you must complete one of the forms shown below. We must receive the form by the last day of school for activities the first week, or one week in advance. Note that we ABSOLUTELY will not make any exceptions to this deadline. We will not transport any child who has not been entered on the computer, because we will NOT risk taking a chance on forgetting a child at an activity. Even if you will be taking your child yourself, please let us know (put a note in the “comments section”).
• On-Site Activity Form: Complete this form if you sign your child up for any of these activities that take place at the Middle School or on Middle School grounds, such as swimming lessons or tennis. We will escort the kids to and from these activities the first week of the program, and will send them in a group after that point. We do not charge for this service.
• Off-Site Activity Form: Complete this form if you sign your child up for any activities that take place away from the middle school. We walk the kids to and from activities that take place across Middle School Road, such as baseball. A traffic flag is used to stop traffic. For this service, we do have a fee of either $2.00 per day or $25.00 for the entire summer. This fee is charged for each activity and each child. We use a School District Van for other activities, and only transport to and from activities that take place within city limits. The fee for van transportation is $5.00 per day per child. The fee is $5.00, even if you sign your child up for more than one activity for which the van is needed.
We do not stay with children at any of these activities.
We transport only between 8:30 am and 5:00 pm Monday through Thursday. We do not do ANY transporting on Fridays.
Occasionally, we have problems with children not wanting to go to their activities. Since you have paid for the activities and asked us to get the them there, we will continue to get children to their activities unless we hear directly from you.
We realize that this is a very important service that we offer, because working parents want their children involved in activities but are often unable to get them there themselves. But it is a very complicated process involving a large number of our children. We need your help and cooperation to make sure it runs smoothly.
We need your assistance in two main areas:
(1) getting the forms to us on time
(2) informing us if your child will be picked up or dropped off by someone else.
OTHER PAPERWORK THAT MAY BE NEEDED:
• Medication Form: If your child will need to be given any medication during our program hours, including over the counter, on a regular or emergency basis, you must complete a Medication Form, which is available on this website. You can give us a copy of the same form you use for school. Note that this form is needed even if your child carries their own inhaler or epipen.
• Emergency Response Plan: If your child has any condition that might result in an emergency, such as diabetes, a life-threatening allergy or epilepsy, we need you to submit an Emergency Response Plan so that we know how you want us to proceed if an emergency occurs.
• Additional Information about your Child: If your child has any special needs, please let us know - we have a form designed to assist us in meeting the needs of your child. We also have a scholarship form you may complete if you are experiencing financial hardship at this time. Contact us if you think you may need any additional forms.
• Scholarship Form: A limited number of scholarships may be available for our program. Scholarships may cover up to 50% of the costs. Please submit a Scholarship Form as early as possible to increase the likelihood that one will be available for you.
My child only needs to come for 1/2 of the day. What is the rate for this?
Unfortunately, we are unable to have a separate fee for partial days in our program. You would need to pay for the whole day.
My child is in the K-1 program. Can she be in SummerKids?
Yes! As a school district school age care program, we are "legally non-licensed" to care for school age children only. K-1 children do fall within this category.
HOWEVER, we cannot accept a child who has not been to a school district kindergarten program.
I heard that you will get kids to activities. How do I arrange this?
You must complete and turn in an Activity Form at least one week prior to the start of the activity. You can find both the On-Site Activity Form and the Off-Site Activity Form under "Forms" to the left. The On-Site form is used for activities held at the middle school such as band lessons, swimming lessons, tennis lessons, etc. There is no charge for this service. We charge for off-site activities. See the "Forms" page for specifics. There is also more information in the FAQ above regarding paperwork.
I am not receiving your emails like other people are. What should I do?
There are a couple of possible problems you can check:
a) log into your account and check that you entered your email address correctly
b) check your spam quarantine. The emails may be being blocked.
If you're still having problems, contact us by phone (333-3284) or email ( ).
I haven't received a bill. How often are they sent out?
In the summer, bills are sent out every week, usually about Wednesday of the following week. Please contact our office if you haven't received a bill by the end of the second week. Also, please see the FAQ regarding receiving our emails for ways to fix this problem.
Why can't I log in to my account?
When you go to log in, make sure you are at this page:
If you're still having problems, call us (333-3284). We can tell you your username but not your password. We can, however, tell you how many characters are in your password. If you still can't figure it out, we can assign you a new password.
What do I do if my schedule changes and my child's attendance days need to change?
You can change your contract by completing the Contract Change Form under the Forms link. It can take effect the day you complete the form, but our system does not allow us to backdate it. We need your signature on this form because it does affect billing.