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Suzume no Gakko Policies
 
 
 
 
  1. Membership
  2. Fees
  3. Pre-enrollment and Class Size
  4. Registration
  5. Parent Participation Responsibilities
  6. Staff, Artists-in-Residence, and Child Care Providers
  7. Officers
  8. Board of Directors
  9. Students
  10. Emergency Procedures
 
   
 
 
 

I. Membership

  1. The child must be entering the first through sixth grades the September following the Suzume no Gakko summer session.
  2. Upon full payment of the application fee and tuition, parents become members of the corporation and have one vote per family.
  3. Members shall be subject to assessment for a pro rata share of the operating expenses of the School which may not be met by the fees or scheduled fund raisers.
  4. Notice of Nondiscriminatory Policy as to Students: Suzume No Gakko admits students of any race, color, national and ethnic origin to all the rights, privileges, programs, and activities generally accorded or made available to students at the school. It does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national and ethnic origin in administration of its educational policies, admissions policies, scholarship and loan programs, and athletic or other school-administered programs.

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II. Fees

  1. The registration fee, which includes an application and tuition fee, is payable as follows:
    1. Pre-enrolled students -- Payment due by October 1st
    2. Registration Lottery in January or February
    3. Balance of tuition due at Orientation Meeting in May
  2. The application fee is non-refundable unless the child is not accepted for enrollment or the class is cancelled.
  3. Refund requests for the tuition portion will be honored up to April 1st or at the discretion of the Board of Directors.

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III. Pre-enrollment* and class size

  1. Children of Suzume no Gakko Board Members are pre-enrolled for the term(s) of the board member, as well as for the following year after the board member's term(s) has expired.
  2. Children of Suzume no Gakko Staff Members are pre-enrolled for the session the staff member serves.
  3. Children of Suzume no Gakko Artists-in-Residence are pre-enrolled for the session the artist in resident serves.
  4. Suzume no Gakko students that have completed four years, not necessarily in consecutive order, may be pre-enrolled for their fifth and/or sixth grade session(s).
  5. Pre-enrollment privileges are only for members' children and may not be applied to other relatives, such as nieces, nephews, or cousins.
  6. Due to fire and safety regulations, class size should not exceed fire code limits.
* All pre-enrollment privileges are subject to a family's compliance with the policies and procedures established by Suzume no Gakko.

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IV. Registration

  1. Pre-enrollment: Children of Staff and Board Members in good standing, along with the 4- and 5-year students in good standing ,will be eligible for pre-enrollment. (Note: Siblings of 4- and 5-year students must register through the lottery.)
  2. First Drop-off Lottery: All children registered in the previous session, their siblings entering 1st grade, and siblings of former Suzume no Gakko students entering first grade will be given the opportunity to participate in the first drop-off lottery. Families must be in good standing to participate in registration. Registration forms for the first drop-off lottery will be accepted on the designated evening and time (typically in January), at Wesley United Methodist Church. Forms not received by the designated time will automatically be entered into the second lottery. (Siblings, grades 2 through 6, who were not registered in the previous session must register in the second lottery).
    1. All vacant spots will be filled by families, with each child's name filled in at the next available open slot. Registering in this manner does not guarantee that every child in the family will be enrolled.
    2. Classes will be filled by this method until there are 5 remaining vacancies in each grade unless filled by pre-enrolled students. In this manner, new families will have the opportunity to enter their children in the second drop-off lottery.
    3. Children who were not enrolled in the first lottery will be automatically entered in the second drop-off lottery.
  3. Notification: Families will be notified of the results by mail. For those children whose names were drawn for enrollment, parent participation forms will be sent out and must be returned to the Parent Participation Coordinator.
  4. Second Drop-off Lottery: New children and returning children whose names were not drawn in the first lottery, and children whose family did not complete parental responsibilities from a prior session will be given the opportunity to participate in the second drop-off lottery. Registration forms for the second drop-off lottery will be accepted on the designated evening and time (typically in February), at Wesley United Methodist Church. There should be at least two vacancies per class which will be filled in the lottery unless the class is filled by pre-enrolled students. Classes are limited to 16 students (with some exceptions). The "family" registration procedure as described above will apply. Notification letters for the second drop-off lottery will be mailed. A waiting list will be created for those children not drawn in the second lottery. When notified of an opening, the applicant must make a decision within 48 hours. For those children whose names were drawn for enrollment, parent participation forms will be sent out and must be returned to the Parent Participation Coordinator. Parents or legal guardians are required to sign up for their first, second, and third choice of Primary and Secondary Committees.
  5. "Double Class" Policy: The first two classes whose waiting list reaches 12 students will qualify for the second class for that particular grade level.
  6. New Parents' Meeting: A meeting for parents new to Suzume no Gakko will be held in February at Wesley United Methodist Church to explain the Parent Participation requirements and answer questions.
  7. Mandatory Parent Orientation Meeting: In May, one parent from each family is required to attend to sign up for classroom and float work days. Those not in attendance will be assigned parent work days. If there is a conflict with your assigned days, it is your responsibility to trade work days with another family.
  8. Checks: Checks will be cashed after the child's name is placed on the class roster.

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V. Parent Participation Responsibilities

The parent or legal guardian must fulfill the parent participation responsibilities. These responsibilities may not be delegated to other individuals.

  1. Primary Committees
    Each family shall serve on one of the following Primary Committees.
    1. Open House Committee
      Chairperson: Vice-President
      • responsible for planning the Open House
      Committee Members
      • set up and clean up of displays and chairs
      • organize and serve refreshments during Open House, as well as during the last day of school
      • must be available on site during the last week of the school session
    2. Clerical Committee
      Chairperson: Secretary
      • responsible for any typing, duplicating, filing, mailing, etc.
      Committee Members
      • have access to computer for word processing documents
      • have access to copier for duplicating
    3. Purchasing Committee
      Chairperson: Purchasing Coordinator
      • responsible for purchasing and maintaining all supplies
      Committee Members
      • take inventory of supplies in storage
      • purchase new supplies needed
      • transport supplies to and from storage
    4. Historical Committee
      Chairperson: Historian/Publicity Coordinator
      • responsible for publishing weekly newsletter and yearbook
      Committee Members
      • type and distribute weekly newsletter
      • take and organize candid photographs for yearbook
    5. Social Committee
      Chairperson: Social/Fund Raising Coordinator
      • responsible for social functions and all money-making activities
      Committee Members
      • plan, organize, set up, and clean up of Nikkei Matsuri Children's Activity
      • plan and organize food and games for Suzume no Gakko Family Picnic
    6. Instructional Materials Committee (IMC)
      Chairperson: Instructional Materials Coordinator
      • responsible for supervising the Grade Level Parents
      Grade Level Parents (are Committee Members)
      • coordinate the distribution of projects to the IMC Committee Members for their assigned grade level
      • responsible for supervising the Instructional Materials Committee (IMC) Committee Members at their grade level
      Committee Members
      • complete arts and crafts, sewing, carpentry projects and purchase supplies as needed
    7. Parent Participation Committee
      Chairperson: Parent Participation Coordinator
      • responsible for providing manpower for various activities as needed
      Committee Members
      • communicate with parents
      • set up and clean up of school facilities before and after the session
      • complete special projects as directed by chairperson
  2. Secondary Committees
    Each family shall serve on one of the following Secondary Committees.
    1. Nikkei Matsuri
      Supervisor: Social/Fund Raising Coordinator
      • Work at Nikkei Matsuri Children's Craft Center
    2. Family Picnic
      Supervisor: Social/Fund Raising Coordinator
      • Work at the Suzume no Gakko Family Picnic
    3. Open House
      Supervisor: Vice-President
      • Work at Open House (purchase and serve refreshments, and assist with set up and clean up)
  3. Work Days
    1. One parent is required to work one day as a floater. In addition, one parent is required to work in the classroom for each child enrolled in Suzume no Gakko.
    2. On the work day, the parent is to report no later than 8:30am to the Parent Participation Coordinator. If the parent is more than 20 minutes late (i.e., arrives after 8:50am), he/she must complete the assigned work day and must make up the time on another day (at the discretion of the board).
    3. Children not enrolled in the school cannot be brought to the school on the work day. This includes siblings.
    4. Presence in the classroom should be limited to work days.
    5. Parents are not to visit and socialize with other adults while working. Parents should not discuss any children in the presence of the children.
    6. Parents are responsible for providing a snack and necessary paper goods during their work days. Nutritious ethnic snacks are encouraged. The school will provide water.
    7. Parents that are unable to fulfill a work day may exchange work days with other Suzume no Gakko parents. If both parents agree, they must notify the Parent Participation Coordinator.
    8. In order for any individual that is not a member of Suzume no Gakko to substitute on the work days, prior approval must be obtained from the Board. Such approvals are infrequent as they are not in keeping with the basic philosophy of a parent participation school.
    9. In the event of absences due to emergency, medical, or family leaves, the fulfillment of work days and participation requirements will be left to the discretion of the Board and Executive Director.
    10. If the parent fails to be present for a work day and does not contact a board member prior to the assigned day, the procedures stated below under "Procedure for Failure to Complete Parent Participation Obligations" will be in effect, and the parent will be rescheduled (at the discretion of the board).
  4. Parent Meetings
    1. New Parents' Meeting will be held in February to explain the Parent Participation requirements and answer questions.
    2. Orientation will be held in May to sign up for work days, meet the teachers, and other orientation business.
    3. Open House and Annual Membership Meeting will be held on the third Thursday of the school session. Elections for Board positions will take place that evening.
  5. Fund Raiser Participation
    If a fund raiser is scheduled for the year, each family may be required to participate.
  6. Procedure for Failure to Complete Parent Participation Obligations
    1. Parent(s) will receive a warning letter notifying them of unfulfilled parent participation duties.
    2. A second offense will result in a letter of expulsion.
    3. Records will be kept, and infractions will be cumulative for the duration of the family's membership in Suzume no Gakko.
  7. Appeals or Special Requests
    Any appeals or special requests must be made in writing to the Executive Board for approval.

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VI. Staff, Artists-in-Residence, and Child Care Providers

  1. The Suzume no Gakko Staff is dedicated to providing a full and varied program emphasizing the unique Japanese-American heritage.
  2. Staff includes the following positions
    Director
    Grade-Level Teachers
    Language Teacher
    Music/Physical Education Teacher
    Artists-in-Residence
    Child Care Providers
  3. The Director and Grade-Level Teachers are required to have a valid California Teaching Credential.
  4. The Language and the Music/Physical Education Teachers are qualified artists-in-residence in their areas of specialization.
  5. The Artists-in-Residence are experts in their field. Their participation enhances the students' experience at Suzume no Gakko.
  6. The Child Care Providers supervise the pre-school children of Board Members, Staff, and Artists-in-Residence. They are selected by the Director and Board President.

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VII. Officers

  1. Election and Terms of Officers
    1. Notices are provided during the Mandatory Orientation Meeting designating the write-in nomination period which takes place between the Orientation Meeting and the second week of the school session. Any member of Suzume no Gakko may be nominated with that individual's consent. Individuals may nominate themselves.
    2. Candidates receiving the highest number of votes are elected to the office.
    3. Board members serve for a two-year term. A board member may only serve for two consecutive terms in the same office. The term begins on the day they are elected and will end the month of the first board meeting of the newly elected officer.
  2. The following Officers of the Corporation are elected during even numbered years:
    Chief Financial Office (Treasurer)
    Purchasing Coordinator
    Social/Fund Raising Coordinator
    Parent Participation Coordinator
  3. The following Officers of the Corporation are elected during odd numbered years:
    Secretary
    Historian/Publicity Coordinator
    Instructional Materials Coordinator
  4. The following Officer is elected annually:
    Vice President/President-Elect
  5. Meetings
    1. Immediately following the Open House and Annual Membership Meeting, the Board meets briefly to welcome its newly elected officers.
    2. The Board meets monthly from September through June. All Board Members are required to be present at all meetings, for the entire meeting.
    3. If a Board Member misses more than one meeting, he/she must bring an extra refreshment during the Suzume no Gakko session or work an extra float day. Notification to the President must be made prior to the May orientation meetng.
    4. A Board Member must call the President prior to a meeting if he/she is unable to attend the meeting.
    5. The Director attends the Board meetings as a non-voting member.
    These requirements will be enforced at the Board's discretion.
  6. Duties of the Officers of the Corporation
    After their term has expired, all Board Members shall server for a one year period in an advisory capacity. This commitment can be fulfilled by membership on the Primary Committee he/she organized, or as otherwise needed.
    1. The President is the Chief Executive Officer of the Corporation and shall, subject to the control of the Board, supervise and control the affairs of the Corporation.
    2. The Vice President shall perform the duties of the President in his/her absence, coordinate registration and orientation, maintain membership records, serve as Chairperson for the Open House Committee, and supervise Open House. The Vice President must be available during the last week of the school session to coordinate the Open House. After serving for one year, the Vice President becomes the President for the second year of office.
    3. The Secretary shall keep minutes of all meetings, handle all general correspondence, update forms, handouts, and Parents' Handbook as needed, maintain custody of corporate records, and serve as Chairperson of the Clerical Committee.
    4. The Chief Financial Officer (Treasurer) shall have charge of all funds and accounts of the Corporation and maintain custody of financial records.
    5. The Purchasing Coordinator shall purchase, stock and inventory all standard supplies, and serve as Chairperson of the Purchasing Committee. The Purchasing Coordinator must be available as needed during the school session.
    6. The Historian/Publicity Coordinator shall handle publicity, coordinate class pictures, publication of yearbook, update the school brochure as needed, publish the school newsletter, maintain a corporation scrapbook, and serve as Chairperson of the Historical Committee.
    7. The Social/Fund Raising Coordinator shall coordinate all social and fund raising activities, serve as Chairperson of the Social Committee, and supervise the following activities: Nikkei Matsuri and Family Picnic.
    8. The Instructional Materials Coordinator (IMC) shall purchase and maintain a comprehensive list of all instructional items used in the curriculum and serve as Chairperson of the Instructional Materials Committee (IMC). The Instructional Materials Coordinator (IMC) must be present on site daily during the school session.
    9. The Parent Participation Coordinator shall coordinate Primary & Secondary Committees, work day assignments and serve as Chairperson of the Parent Participation Committee. The Parent Participation Coordinator must be present on site daily during the school session.

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VIII. Board of Directors

The Suzume no Gakko Corporation is run by the Board of Directors which includes the Officers and the Ex-Officio (immediate past president).

The Ex-Officio acts as an advisor to the Board of Directors, but has no voting privileges. The Ex-Officio may coordinate specific fund raisers and any other special projects requested by the Board of Directors.

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IX. Students

  1. Arrival and Dismissal
    There will be no supervision of children prior to 8:45am or after 12:00 noon.
  2. Field Trips
    1. Field trips must be authorized by the Director.
    2. No child will be allowed on a field trip without a written permission slip from the parent or guardian.
    3. Parents that volunteer to drive during field trips must provide adequate proof of insurance and a copy of their valid California driver's license, as mandated by current California legislation.
    4. Volunteer drivers do not receive work day or float day credit.
    5. Field trips which do not receive adequate parent participation may be cancelled.
    6. A parent who has agreed to assist with a field trip and has to cancel because of a personal emergency is expected to provide a substitute.
    7. Alcoholic beverages on field trips and all school functions where children are involved are prohibited.
  3. Health
    1. Each family is responsible for checking their child for illness before sending him/her to school in the morning. The School has the authority to send home any child believed to be ill. If the child contracts a communicable disease, the Director must be notified and contacted prior to the child's return to Suzume no Gakko.
    2. All allergies should be listed on the Emergency Form and brought to the attention of the Director and Teacher.
    3. The School will contact the doctor and/or emergency contact(s) listed on the emergency form in the event of an emergency when the parent cannot be reached.
  4. Prolonged Absences
    1. Students are expected to attend every day of the three week summer session.
    2. If it is anticipated that a student will miss more than 3 days of the session, parents must submit a written request to the Director(s) for prior approval of this prolonged absence. Written requests must be submitted by April 20th.
    3. Once a request has been submitted, parents will be notified within 2 weeks about whether their request has been approved or denied. Approval will only be granted for extenuating circumstances by the Director(s).
    4. During the session, if there is an unforeseen circumstance that causes a student to be absent for more than 3 days, such as a sudden illness or family emergency, parents should notify the directors as soon as possible.
    5. A student may be subject to dismissal for more than three absences without prior approval. A student will not be allowed to complete any projects that were unfinished or missed due to a prolonged absence.
  5. Student Expulsion
    1. The Director has the authority to expel a student when the School's best interests are obstructed by the student's continued attendance.
    2. The parent of an expelled student may request a special meeting of the Board to discuss the expulsion of his/her child. However, this does not delay or in any way affect the expulsion of the child.
  6. Insurance
    Suzume no Gakko does not carry medical insurance. The school is covered by a general liability policy.

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X. Emergency Procedures

  1. Emergency Phone Numbers
    1. Fire Department: 911
    2. Police Department: 911
    3. Paramedics and Ambulance (CPR): 911
    4. School Emergency, Wesley United Methodist Church Office: (408) 295-0367
      Only call the school in the event of an emergency
  2. Location of
    1. Fire Extinguishers
      1. Sunday School Building
        Rooms 14 and 21, first floor
        Rooms 23 and 24, second floor
      2. Fellowship Hall
        Kitchen
        Behind coat closet
        Behind Men's restroom
      3. Sanctuary
        Electrical Closet
        Southwest corner near organ
    2. Electrical Box
      1. Sunday School Building
        Room 15, Print Room
      2. Fellowship Hall
        Behind coat closet
        Near bathroom on right
    3. Gas Main
      1. On street-side front of church, to the left of steps. The rectangular knob in the vertical position should be turned horizontally to turn gas off.
      2. On south wall of classrooms.
    4. Water Main
      1. On street-side front of church, to the left of steps. The green painted handle next to the gas main controls the water to the Fellowship Hall and the Sunday School Building. The green painted handle to the far right controls the water for the church building.
      2. On parking strip, near corner of the office and driveway. Lift cover and turn green valve.
  3. General Emergency Procedures
    1. The children will be kept at school or the nearest safe area, under adult supervision, until picked up by their parents, or legal guardians. Parents should try to pick up their children as soon as possible.
    2. Use the telephone only to report a life-threatening situation. When telephone lines become overloaded, telephones will be turned off for outgoing calls. Phones will still accept incoming calls. In this way, the lines are open for official use only
  4. In Case of Fire
    1. Yell: "Fire!", or ring continuous bell.
    2. Calmly evacuate the children out of the school building to the parking lot according to the fire drill plan. Each teacher will account for his/her students against the class roster, then lead students and adults down the street to a safe area.
    3. Call the Fire Department: 911
  5. In Case of Earthquake
    1. During an earthquake:
      1. If indoors, stay there. Don't rush outside. The greatest hazard is from falling debris. Have students assume the emergency drop position under a desk or table or in a doorway with their backs to the windows. Watch for falling plaster, light fixtures, or other objects. Stay away from windows.
      2. If outside, move away from buildings and powerlines. Stay in the open.
      3. If in a car, stop the car, but stay insude
    2. After an earthquake:
      Check for injuries. Stay away from damaged structures. Inspect utilities for damage and turn them off, if damaged.
  6. In Case of Explosions, Surprise Enemy Attack, or Nuclear Attack
    1. The enemy attach warning signal is a three to five minute wavering tone on sirens or short blasts on horns. Turn on radio for emergency information.
    2. If indoors, have students assume the emergency drop position under a desk or table with their backs to the windows.
    3. If outdoors, get the children to find shelter behind, under, or in something away from the danger of flying glass or debris.

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