With the unusual Austin snow, now is a good time to make snowflake crafts with the children. Ms. Irene shows us how.
Preschool Service to Resume on January 4th, 2021
Sprouting Star will resume our preschool education and development programs on Monday, January 4th, 2021*. We are excited to see the children back at school.
We are now accepting registration applications for children ages 2 to 5 years old for our Preschool Program.
All-day Preschool, Ages 3-5, $595/mo**. Mon- Fri, 8:30am-3:30pm. (sign-up)
Morning Preschool, Ages 3-5, $375/mo**. Mon-Fri, 8:30am-11am. (sign-up)
Afternoon Preschool, Ages 3-5, $250/mo**. Mon-Fri, 1:30pm-3:30pm. (sign-up)
(For ages 24-35 months, add 25% to the above rates. All-day, morning and afternoon are $775, $485, and $325/mo respectively. sign-up)
If you are interested restarting your child at the center or newly joining our school, please sign-up here.
Our infant programs for children under 2 years old will remain closed at least until February 2021. If you are interested in receiving more information and status updates with regards to our infant care programs, please sign-up for our wait list here.
* All dates subject to change. We will continue to monitor the pandemic situation and make adjustments as necessary for the safety of students and staff.
** Rates subject to change.
Child Care Providers Must Continue to Protect Children and Staff In Climate of Confusing and Contradictory State Guidance.
Sprouting Star Children’s Academy is committed to doing everything possible to maintain the health and safety of the children in our care. We have been receiving mixed communications about what is truly required from State agencies. At this time, Sprouting Star believes that current control procedures are still necessary to protect the health and safety of the children and our staff, and will continue to implement our Safer Choice for Funtm (see https://sproutingstar.org/2020/05/10/summer2020/) unchanged. Drop-off and Pick-up procedures, entry screening, portioning of family style meals, emergency hours of operation, and all other procedures remain unchanged.
On Friday, June 12, 2020 at 4:47pm, we received the following communication from Texas Health and Human Services:
This message was most confusing. Within 24 hours of receiving this message, the following Facebook advertisement, sponsored by Texas Health and Human Services was seen:
This leaves Sprouting Star scratching our organizational heads on what the government is actually trying to tell us regarding the necessary procedures to protect the health and safety of the children and our staff. The confusion is amplified by the fact that Child Care Regulation is a department of the Texas Health and Human Services, and therefore these two messages are coming out of the same State organization.
Sprouting Star President, John Russo, participated in a live zoom conference with Texas Workforce Director of Child Care and the Area Director of Texas Health and Human Services on Friday, June 12, 2020 at 1PM. The purpose of this conversation was to explore funding options for the continued implementation of these very restrictive COVID-19 control procedures outlined in the additional resources attached to the June 12th repeal letter. While acknowledging that many of the COVID-19 control procedures will not be enforced, there was expressed no disagreement that control procedures are needed.
This has Sprouting Star very concerned that simply following the implied guidance of the message repealing the emergency procedures at this time will leave our children and staff at unnecessary risk. And therefore we will continue to implement these procedures unchanged. Further, we have a general social concern that the withdrawal of enforcement of these regulations could potentially have an unequal and unjust impact on diverse communities in Texas, especially as government assistance to centers that serve these communities is being simultaneously withdrawn in concert with the repeal of emergency orders. This concern regarding the justice of State policy was communicated by Sprouting Star President, John Russo at the June 12th meeting with the State representatives.
So what is the truth? We have researched the current COVID-19 statistics for the immediate Austin area today, and we find the following:
The same day Texas Health and Human Services announced a repeal of emergency orders to protect our children and staff, the hospitalization of serious COVID-19 victims has reached a record high. We at Sprouting Star are not able to reconcile the apparent divergence in the repealing of the protective orders and the increase in virus cases in our State. We are confused by this action, and we do not feel it is in the best interests of the health and safety of all Texas children. We have therefore decided to continue with the control procedures and The Safer Choice for Fun program until we are confident this crisis has passed.
We appreciate any feedback from our parents and families regarding this important issue. We will continue to do the best we can to protect the health and safety of the children and staff in these very uncertain and confusing times.
Once upon a time, at Sprouting Star, teachers read for their children at school and afar. Stories light a fire in the imagination of children. Reading is an important part of their mental development. Through these online videos, our teachers can read to your children while you are at home. We hope you enjoy listening to our teachers read their favorite stories.
What the Moon Sees, Read by Mrs. Naima
My Friends, Read by Mrs. Naima
Here Are My Hands, Read by Mrs. Naima
Five Little Ducks, Read by Mrs. Naima
Baby Bunny and the Storm, Read by Mrs. Naima
Llama Llama Red Pajama, Read by Mrs. Alicia
Brown Bear, Read by Mrs. Alicia
Germs Are Not for Sharing, Read by Mrs. Alicia
Germs Are Not for Sharing – Ms Alicia – Spanish from Sprouting Star on Vimeo.
Pete the Cat Five Little Bunnies, Read by Mrs. Alicia
White Rabbit’s Color Book, Read by Mrs. Alicia
Carlo Likes Counting, Read by Ms. Ashlee
Pete the Cat Loves His White Shoes, Read by Ms. Sarah
We welcome your feedback on these lessons. Contact us here.
Welcome to Sprouting Star Preschool@Home! Early childhood learning is not just daycare or babysitting. Our teachers thoughtfully prepare lesson plans designed to help your child grow. These lesson plans must carefully consider each child’s age and developmental abilities.
Infant Development, Ms. Naima
Ms. Naima is our infant development specialist. She has prepared these lessons you can do at home together with your child ages 6 to 24 months.
Week 1, Lesson 1 – Ages 6-24 months, Subject: Transportation
Week 1, Lesson 2 – Ages 6-24 months, Subject: Push and Pull
Week 1, Lesson 3 – Ages 6-24 months, Subject: Transportation Through the Sky
Week 2, Lesson 1 – Ages 6-24 Months, Subject: Four Seasons
Week 2, Lesson 2 – Ages 6-24 Months, Subject: Dig It
Week 3, Lesson 1 – Ages 6-24 Months, Subject: Tissue Box-Pull
Week 3, Lesson 2 – Ages 6-24 Months, Subject: Growing Sizes
Week 3, Lesson 3 – Ages 6-24 Months, Subject: Mess-free Easter Egg Painting
Toddler Development, Mrs. Alicia
Mrs. Alicia is our toddler development specialist. She has prepared these lessons you can do at home together with your child ages 24 to 35 months.
Week 1, Lesson 1 – Ages 24-35 months, Subject: Transition
Week 1, Lesson 2 – Ages 24-35 months, Subject: Transportation by Sea
Week 2, Lesson 1 – Ages 24-35 months, Subject: The Four Seasons
Week 2, Lesson 2 – Ages 24-35 months, Subject: Spring
Week 3, Lesson 1 – Ages 24-35 months, Subject: Chalk Obstacle Course
Week 3, Lesson 2 – Ages 24-35 months, Subject: Shape Sorting Activity
Week 3, Lesson 3 – Ages 24-35 months, Subject: Family Handprint Portrait
Pre-K Development, Ms. Ashlee
Ms. Ashlee is our pre-k development specialist. She has prepared these lessons you can do at home together with your child ages 3 to 5 years.
Week 1, Lesson 1 – Ages 3-5 years, Subject: Moving Through Air
Week 1, Lesson 2, Ages 3-5 years, Subject: Germs, Germs, Germs
Week 1, Lesson 3, Ages 3-5 years, Subject: Same Sound Introduction
We welcome your feedback on these lessons. Contact us here.
Our classroom hours are from 8:30 am to 3:30pm.
At Sprouting Star, we put the child’s development first. Classroom hours are shorter than many preschools. However, standing back, this is still a 7-hour school day for these little ones. It is our goal to set a schedule that is compatible with engaging the children in enriching opportunities to grow.
We all know that consistency is important for the healthy development of children. And that means consistency with their teachers during the day. Many schools with extended hours must transition teachers during the day, which creates stress for the children and diminishes the developmental experience.
Think about it. We all know that children are not just different, but they are different on different days. They truly benefit in immeasurable ways from having the same teacher throughout the day. The same teacher can connect afternoon experiences to morning experiences at a more personal and meaningful level. While the shorter day may seem inconvenient, we believe that when putting the child’s experience at the center of our program, it makes total sense.
Licensed, Accredited, and Texas School Ready
As part of our commitment to developmental excellence, Sprouting Star(r) Children’s Academy follows three tiers of quality defined and monitored by the State of Texas. Our center is fully licensed by the authority of the Texas Health and Human Services Department. Our programs are accredited by the Texas Workforce Commission Texas Rising Star quality program, and our pre-k students are kept on-track for kindergarten through the Texas School Ready program.
Multiple Enrichment Learning Options
In addition to regular classroom developmental curriculum, we believe learning doesn’t end with the ABC’s. Sprouting Star Children’s Academy provides multiple enriched learning opportunities through partnerships with professional enrichment program vendors.
Dance and Gymnastics
Dance and gymnastics programs are provided by Kinderdance. Dance is an excellent way to develop your child’s physical expression.
Sports and Physical Education
Through our partnership with Skyhawks, Sprouting Star students develop their growing bodies as well as their mind and spirit. This program is currently suspended due to the pandemic situation, however, we hope to bring it back as soon as it is safe to do so.
Quality Lunch Catering
And what is development without nutrition? Sprouting Star has partnered with LunchDirect(tm) to provide a high-quality and flexible lunch program to all students. The lunches served by LunchDirect meet or exceed all USDA guidelines for the Child and Adult Care Food Program. Prices start at only $2.50 per meal. Order on-line, meals are delivered right to the school. On-line menus let choose one of four delicious options for your child, including vegetarian and organic!
Additionally, children receive one morning and one afternoon snack with milk or juice.
Convenient Smartphone App
We encourage parents to be involved with our learning and development programs. We continually explore technology as a tool in facilitating this community of learning. Through the Smartcare(tm) app, parents receive daily reports and track classroom progress through their smart phones.
Video Classroom Surveillance
Sprouting Star Children’s Academy provides continuous video monitoring of all classrooms at the center. Classroom activities are recorded and events can be verified, providing the highest level of trust.
Sprouting Star® Children’s Academy offers comprehensive quality services to ensure your child is safe and receives the best learning experience while they are at our center. From our state accredited educational programs, quality catered lunches, and opportunities for enrichment, we have what your child needs to grow and develop their inner potential. Let’s take a look at just some of the services that Sprouting Star has to offer.
Looking for an enriching, safe and loving environment? You will find all these things and more with Sprouting Star educational child care and learning programs. Rasing a child truly takes a team. Sprouting Star works with many state agencies, accreditation authorities, and educational companies to ensure the diverse needs of our students are met.
Licensed by the State of Texas
We are a fully licensed center by the State of Texas Department of Health and Human Services. Placing your child in a licensed center ensures important health and safety
standards and provides State oversight and monitoring to ensure they are followed. When you entrust us with your child, he or she gets the nurturing care he or she needs to thrive. Your little one will grow physically, emotionally and mentally.
We are a true learning center and offer much more than simply daycare. Our teachers encourage exploring, discovery, cognitive learning and social skills.
Accredited by Texas Rising Star
Sprouting Star educational programs are accredited by the State of Texas program Texas Rising Star, assuring the highest quality of education while your child is with us. Teachers in every classroom are required to manage classroom schedules and prepare thoughtful lesson plans each week that define developmentally appropriate objectives and engaging activities to help your child achieve these objectives.
And that’s not all. Our partnership with the Texas School Ready program ensures our pre-k classes are keeping our students on track for kindergarten.
Texas School Ready Quality Assurance
This program is designed to assure that children entering kindergarten are prepared to succeed through research-based curriculums, professional development, coaching and child progress monitoring.
Enrichment and extracurricular are an important part of any learning program. Sprouting Star enrichment programs partner with professionals like Kinderdance® nd Skyhawks®. Together,
we feed the spirit and body with dance, gymnastics, and sports.
The center provides one morning and one afternoon snack, milk, and juice. Lunch is provided by LunchDirect™ professional caterers. Choose online from four options each day,
including healthy veggie and organic choices. There is a fee for LunchDirect meals and families may also pack lunch from home.
Step #1 – Welcome
Welcome to Sprouting Star. Please join our director, Ms. Alicia, for a virtual video tour of our school in the video below.
As of January 4th, 2021, we are accepting a limited number of children for enrollment at our school. For more information about programs offered, click here.
We encourage all of our prospective families to come visit our school in person. It really is the best way to get to know us. With the COVID-19 pandemic, this presents some challenges. As we only permit enrolled children and families into the facility during operating hours, we must schedule a suitable time after hours to meet with you. Masks are required for anyone who enters the school. We apologize for these limitations.
On your visit, we walk you through the school. We show you the arrival process, the classrooms, and the playground. You meet your child’s teacher and the administrative staff. And we answer your questions about the lesson plans and curriculum.
At the conclusion of your tour, when you feel that Sprouting Star Children’s Academy is the right place for your child to grow and learn, you will receive an enrollment package with the application and additional information to complete the enrollment process.
Step #2 – Complete the Application
At the end of your tour, you receive an enrollment package with the following information:
- Admission Information Form. Complete this form to supply basic information about your child and family. You will provide information such as name, birth dates, health information, etc. It also includes important instructions such as who is allowed to pick up your child.
- Emergency Card. This form duplications some of the most important information from the Admission Information Form that would be used in the event of an emergency.
- COVID-19 Control Procedures. This document supplies a checklist of the procedures at the center. Parents acknowledge their role in maintaining school safety. For a copy of these procedures, please click here.
- Parent Handbook. This is an important booklet with detailed descriptions of all of Sprouting Star policies and procedures. It contains information like drop-off and pick-up procedures, illness policies and much more. Keep this handy for the entire time your child(ren) attend Sprouting Star.
- Orientation Checklist. This is a list of new family orientation procedures. Touring the facility and meeting teachers are just a few of these.
- Tuition Schedule and Financial Responsibility Notice.
- Meal Policy. Information about the meal policies.
- LunchDirectTM Program Information. This describes how to register on-line for the catered meal program.
- Smartphone App Enrollment Application. This form collects necessary information to enable the Smartphone app features.
- Gang Free Zone Notice. A government required notice that the school is located in a gang free zone.
This application is entirely online through Docusign. When you are ready to enroll, simply provide us with your email address, and we can get the process started. To sign-up and request an electronic application, CLICK HERE.
STEP #3 – Provide Immunization Records
State licensing regulations require all licensed centers to maintain immunization records and a doctor’s well-check letter for all children not enrolled in grade school. If your child has not yet started Kindergarten, you will need to include copies of his or her immunization records with your application. We also need a “well check” letter from the doctor stating that your child is healthy to attend daycare. Pediatricians usually know what information to provide, so simply request these two things from your child’s doctor, and submit them with the application.
If your child is already in enrolled in Kindergarten or grade school, and you are applying for extended care, immunization records are not necessary.
STEP #4 – Purchase Your Child’s Supplies
Your child will require a few items when he or she begins school. These items include:
- A nap mat
- Two sets of extra clothes (in case there is an accident and get dirty)
- Water cup
- Diapers and wipes (if applicable)
Make sure you have these items ready on your child’s first day. Nap mats go in your child’s home classroom. Their extra clothes, blankets and diapers go in their cubbies labeled with their name. If you need assistance, the director and teachers are ready to help.
Step #5 – Choose Your Child’s Meals
If you will be participating in our catered lunch program, it is time to create your online account and choose your child’s meals. Participation is not mandatory, every family is free to pack their own lunch if desired.
Register With LunchDirect Online
To register online, go to: www.lunchdirect.com
Here you will enter the school code included in your enrollment package and create an account.
Registration Code: 159130
Choose Your Meals
Once you register, choose the meals using the convenient online menu. From this menu, you may choose the days you wish to order, and one of four different meal options each day, from family style, standard box lunch, vegetarian, and even fully organic meals.
You need to choose your child’s meals by the Thursday end of day before the week your child starts school. If you miss this deadline, there is a late deadline of Saturday preceding the week your child starts, however LunchDirect does charge a late order surcharge for orders received on Friday or Saturday.
STEP #6 – The Big Day!
Your child is now ready for his or her first day of school! This is an important day in your child’s young life. He or she may be excited, or nervous, or both! Every child approaches their first day differently. Have patience. Once here, every child develops new abilities, skills, and relationships.
Have questions? We are here to help!
Community of Families
Join our community of new parents!
Sprouting Star Children’s Academy announce the Community of Families program starting in December.
Join us each week with your child for “Mommy and me” on Tuesday and Thursday of December. Get out of the house and reconnect with other parents, learn new approaches to managing your home with children. Discuss self-care strategies for you, the parent! A time for you and your child to socialize with others like you.
(Hay clases bilinguales en Español. Pídanos!)
Let’s join together to support and inspire one another during these unprecedented times.
8:30am-9:30am or 10am-11am.
Tuesdays and Thursdays, 12/8, 12/10, 12/15, 12/17, and 12/22.
$80 for December (5 sessions), Attend in-person or via Zoom.
$50 for Zoom-only attendance.
Due to the pandemic, we are limited to five families (one parent and one child) per session in-person. Masks and other screening required for adult participants.
Sprouting Star Children’s Academy
15913 Windermere Drive, Pflugerville
Alternatively, you may participate via Zoom.
We had a great time distributing pumpkins on Saturday! We handed out a little over 40 pumpkins and many craft kits.
Don’t forget, this Saturday from 11am – 12pm is the virtual Halloween event. Fun Halloween story time and virtual craft making. It is free, but you must register at:
Thank you for stopping by. Here’s a short video of the fun on Saturday. Enjoy!
Community Preschool Pumpkin Contest & Halloween Party
Halloween is just around the corner. And with COVID concerns dampening celebrations, we at Sprouting Star wanted to provide some safe community fun for children in the neighborhood. We wanted to provide some fun for preschool age children in our community during these times. Therefore we will be hosting two events. On Oct 24th, we will be distributing free pumpkins to children. And on Oct 31st, we will host a virtual pumpkin contest and Halloween party!
Pumpkin Patch and Fall Celebration
Saturday, October 24th, 2020, 1pm – 3pm
On Saturday, we will be distributing free small pumpkins and pumpkin painting kits between 1pm-3pm. Come on by, let your child choose a small pumpkin, and get a pumpkin contest painting kit. You can take them home, or paint them there with us. We will have free hot dogs and snacks for your enjoyment as well. Everything is free. Parents are required to remain and supervise their children.
Just come by our school at 15913 Windermere Drive to get a free pumpkin, painting kit, and food. Supplies are limited, so first come, first served.
For tips on how to paint a pumpkin, please watch our pumpkin painting video by our own Ms. Alicia and Ms. Natalie
Watch this video…
Virtual Halloween Party and Pumpkin Contest
Halloween- October 31st, 2020, 11am – 12pm
Join us on zoom to show off your pumpkins and enter our pumpkin contest! There will be Halloween stories (appropriate for young children), and other fun virtual activities. Winners of the contest will be announced at the end of the event.
The party is age appropriate for children 8 weeks to 6 years old.
Participation is free, and open to the community, but you must register. Please use the link below.
Follow-up Notice Regarding Incident on 8/4/2020
We are grateful to report that the self-reported State investigation into the incident on August 4th, 2020 confirmed our previous understanding that no children were left unsupervised, nor was there any abuse or neglect. It was clear from the full surveillance recordings that the child had been directly transferred to another staff member waiting in the hallway.
The incident involved a teacher’s response to a child who was biting another child on the face. The teacher immediately responded, calling for assistance, separating the children, and then transferring the child to another staff member while she tended to the needs of the injured student. The child was returned to the class shortly, after she finished administering aid. One lesser issue, whether the transfer was consistent with positive guidance, remains under review. The teacher had been disciplined for incorrectly lifting the child as she was attempting to separate the two and stop the biting. This action, while likely preventing injury to the other child, was not consistent with school policy. But again, no child was ever left unattended for any time, nor was any abuse found, nor are we aware of any harm as had been claimed by several individuals.
Unfortunately, this child behavioral issue and the teacher’s response appears to have been greatly exaggerated by two former staff members. False and mischaracterized accusations were spread widely to families and via social media. It is our opinion this may have been intentional to damage the reputation of the school for private motives. However, every experience is a learning experience. And we will certainly improve our policies, especially with regards to children with severe biting behaviors.
In this case, Sprouting Star followed all state regulations on reporting the incident, and cooperated fully. We are additionally grateful that no abuse, neglect, nor supervision deficiencies were found by the State.
8/14/2020 message to families immediately following the incident…
DATE: August 14, 2020 TO: Sprouting Star Families SUBJECT: Follow-up on Resignation of Former Director FOLLOW-UP ANNOUNCEMENT The following is a follow-up to the resignation of the previous center director. We have had a number of inquiries into the situation surrounding the former director’s departure. Due to these questions, and statements that have been made on social media by her and/or her associates, further information seems appropriate. This director was employed by the center since January of 2019, and while she was taking more classroom responsibility during the COVID crisis, she retained her position on the management team and was integral to the classroom operations. She was also a Sprouting Star parent, and her child has attended Sprouting Star for the last two years. WHAT HAPPENED On August 4, 2020 the former director reported that her child, a student here at Sprouting Star, was inappropriately disciplined. She said that after he bit another child, he was removed from the classroom and placed alone in the hall unsupervised. This would have been clearly wrong. The accused caregiver was a long-time employee who is well regarded and had no history of any misconduct. During this report, the former director stated that she had only partial information and did not know certain details, such as if anyone was in the hallway at the time. She also said she had not spoken to the caregiver. The former director was both part of the management team and the child's parent and agreed to investigate further. A meeting was arranged for the following morning the next day. This meeting never happened because the former director did not report to work the next morning. It was discovered at that point that the former director had left a resignation letter citing this incident as the reason for her resignation. Examining video evidence, it was determined that the child was not left unsupervised. The assistant director had been called and was waiting outside the doorway, and directly received him from the caregiver. However, the video did show the caregiver lifted the child by the arm when separating him from the child being bitten and exiting the classroom. Lifting by the arm is absolutely prohibited due to the potential for injury. It is our understanding that thankfully no injury occurred. However, this was still improper procedure. The caregiver was immediately reprimanded. This was also self-reported to the State, as required by law. WHAT WE DO IN SITUATIONS LIKE THIS Whenever a concern is raised, it is treated seriously. This goes for concerns of staff parents as well. The first step is to ensure safety. Then we allow due process to ascertain the facts, to the best of our ability, before further action is taken. It is important to know exactly what happened and give everyone involved a chance to provide what information they have. This can usually be done quite quickly examining video and speaking to those involved. If the allegation is one of abuse or neglect, it is reported by the center to Child Care Licensing within 48 hours. Sprouting Star faithfully complied with such procedures here. WHAT WE DID When the former director reported the incident, we immediately began an investigation. This case was unique as the parent and management were the same person. For this reason, the school president did ask the former director at that time if she preferred that he take over and call the meeting with the caregiver. She stated unequivocally that she was comfortable having that discussion and did not need assistance, but then failed to attend the meeting with the caregiver. We immediately picked up where she had left off: reviewed video, held the meeting, took disciplinary action, and reported the incident as required. The caregiver has been disciplined. As of the present time, she has not been terminated. The reason for this is that the caregiver has identified special circumstances leading to her improper lift. The caregiver reported, and the video supported, that the child who was removed had been biting another child, and the caregiver was acting to protect, not punish. Additionally, the video reflected that the lifting, while not proper, was neither prolonged, nor apparently for any purpose other than separating the two children. Sprouting Star has not made a final determination. We are now working cooperatively with State authorities to evaluate this situation. Until this investigation is over, and we hear what they have determined, a final decision would be premature. Sprouting Star is, additionally, disturbed by the behavior of the former director in this instance. The former director used her access as a center director to remove video evidence from the center without permission and against policy and federal law, then released selected clips of this video to cause a social media campaign against the caregiver and school. This campaign perpetuates the claim that the child was left alone, which has been established as inaccurate. This campaign attempts to try the caregiver by Internet, and denies her of her due process in company and State procedures. This has created considerable stress for all caregivers at the center. This campaign also was undertaken with the suggestion that Sprouting Star had not taken action to investigate and address this matter, a suggestion we find especially insincere since the former director agreed to participate in the investigation, but then decided to skip her meeting with the caregiver and publish the video on the Internet. We regret this action, and will ask for her to return all property which does not belong to her.
SPROUTING STAR SUSPENDING OPERATIONS
Date: September 4, 2020
Subject: Suspending Operations on September 18, 2020
To: All Parents and Sprouting Star Familes
On September 18, 2020, Sprouting Star Children’s Academy is suspending child care operations likely through November of 2020. We hope to resume operations in December. This, however, is dependent on the COVID-19 health situation and business environment. Tuition will be prorated through the 18th. If you have paid for any portion after the 18th, it will be refunded. For CCS PSOC, Workforce automatically transfers this balance to your new provider.
Since the March 13th President declared disaster, Sprouting Star has had to suspend services on four separate occasions as a precautionary response to health concerns of COVID-19. We are extremely thankful that we never had any confirmed cases of COVID-19 at our center, neither with children nor staff. While we know that it is not possible to entirely eliminate the risk, we believe that many of the measures that we have taken, including the preemptive closures, have helped reduce the risk to children and staff, even as we navigated the spike in local infections that peaked in July.
Financially, however, these closures have taken their toll on the school. With each closure, the number of returning children drop. Even the last closure, which was medically cleared and services restored after only one day, resulted in a 10% drop in enrollment. We initially received some government support to offset these losses. However these funds either exhausted in June or the benefits reduced in June and July. With the continued closures, and the lack of any new stimulus support, it has reached a critical point.
There is no evidence to suggest that the situation will dramatically change in the coming few months. Were we to continue operating, more closures would likely be necessary to protect children and staff, causing the financial situation to continue to worsen. Therefore, it seems that the best course of action is to suspend services and patiently wait for things to stabilize enough to operate both safely and reliably.
I would like to thank all of our families for standing with us during these times. I would also like to thank my staff, who have continued to report to work and care for your children, despite their own health concerns and a significantly more challenging environment with PPE and sanitation. It is a heart-felt decision, as I know that all of you have been dedicated to the success here at Sprouting Star.
Since the pandemic seems to have a will of its own, we cannot predict the length of the suspended operations. Therefore we wished to give all families a customary two weeks notice to find alternative arrangements for care before operations closed. Hopfully before the end of the year, the situation will impove, and we can safely reopen and try to move beyond 2020.
If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to reach out.
President, Sprouting Star Children’s Academy
Sprouting Star Summer 2020- Announcement
Use the link above to sign-up for Sprouting Star Summer 2020. An exciting unparalleled program for an unprecedented time. We support Workforce Child Care Services (CCS) and Austin Community College Child Care Assistance programs. We are also listed on the Texas Frontline Childcare website. We are accredited through Texas Rising Star and hold 4 stars, the maximum in the program.
Summer 2020 begins on June 1st! There is also a limited number of early start enrollment spots for classes beginning on May 26th. When you sign-up, you will have the option to select your preference.
A Safer Choice For Funtm
The Sprouting Star Summer 2020 program is designed for safety in these unprecedented times. Safety is Priority One.Sprouting Star Children’s Academy
Welcome to Sprouting Star Summer 2020! The corona virus pandemic brought many changes in March. Safety became the top priority for everyone. Schools closed. Activities cancelled. Many children schooled at home while parents anxiously waited for news when it would be safe to return to normal. Those hopes eventually evolved into expectations for the new normal. Sprouting Star Children’s Academy has always held safety of the children as the top priority. Like many others, we responded to the crisis. We temporarily closed while the staff worked on creating that new normal. A normal that would be safe and fun for the children when they returned. We considered the guidance from local, state, and federal authorities, and added a few ideas of our own. On April 27, 2020, we reopened to serve the essential worker families that depend on us to care for and educate their children in the safest possible manner we can achieve. We believe pandemic concerns are going to continue into the summer. Therefore, Sprouting Star Summer 2020 programming continues modified COVID-19 safety policies and procedures developed during the most intense period in March and April through the summer while offering a program that is developmentally stimulating and fun for the children.
Safe Must Be Fun
Childhood is a special time of wonder. Children need to explore the world and develop their natural curiosity and ability. At Sprouting Star, we believe safe must be fun. Our summer program achieves this combination.
We have prepared a first class experience for your child here at Sprouting Star. The combination of program features stands out from other programs and is intensionally designed for the unique challenges of Summer 2020. We challenge anyone to find a better combination of program features that serves the whole child. These include:
- A Safer Choice for Funtm – This program component intentionally continues through the entire summer term many of the safety policies and protocols established during the peak of the pandemic emergency. This includes entrance screening, twice daily deep cleanings, interim day wipe downs, intra-classroom social distancing, 2 teacher teams assigned exclusively to a single classroom, contactless registration, and more. Our program has exciting curriculum, fun activities, and some special programs hosted on-site, however for the safety of the children and their families, NO OFF-SITE FIELD TRIPS this year. These are replaced with weekly on-site Splash Days and Outdoor Movies!
- Naturally Inspired Childtm Curriculum – Naturally Inspired Child seeks to inspire learning through nature. Children are naturally drawn to nature and the world around them. It is the goal of our programs to expound on this innate curiosity to make learning fun and meaningful. Each week, for PreK and School Age children, there will be an exciting Naturally Inspired Child special project. For example, one week we will plan a deep sea exploration. Another week we will dissect owl spit! and try to identify the various bones, teeth, and insect shells contained in it. During our insect week, we will build and paint a real beehive!
- Pflugerville ISD Curriculum Review – We want our school age children to have an edge when they resume school in August. We have received the take-home assignments from PISD and will spend time each day to review this material with the K-5th graders. This reinforces the work your child started at home, and completes missed assignment so your child is ready when school starts on August 13th!
- Daily Integrated Sports and PE – We will use a portion of each day to develop the physical development of the children. Summer activities for children 3 and up will use concepts in Soccer, Basketball, Baseball, and Volleyball to get kids moving and develop their physical and social skills.
- Fully Licensed and 4-Star Accredited Child Learning Center – We are fully licensed through the state of Texas HHS, and 4-star accredited with Texas Rising Star, the maximum level of quality. Our classrooms, lesson plans, and programming meet high standards and consider the physical, social-emotional, cognitive, and language development needs of your child.
How to Sign-up?
Just click here to go to our contact-less sign-up page.
Let us walk you through the process. We look forward to your admission to our school and our learning family. Or, you may call us at (512) 777-3477 and we can take your information by phone. You can also reach us by email at firstname.lastname@example.org
All plans subject to change with fluid conditions of the current pandemic crisis.