Read the Terry Tan Child Centre FAQs
Many families call to put their name on our waitlist but may have another centre in mind for care that is closer to home, school or work. When a family is offered a spot at another centre, very rarely do they call to remove their name from our list. So, there may be 45 children on the list, but 20 have accepted spots elsewhere, 15 have contact information that no longer works, and the remaining 8 have changed their minds. That means out of the 45 we could quote based on the list, you might actually be second on the list! Essentially, it means that a number is not relevant, nor is it where you sit on the list in terms of the possibility of a spot. Also, a waitlist of one is too long if you need a spot today or within the next month!
Due to the extensive length of waitlists for all age groups, we will only call when we can offer you a spot or when we are updating the waitlist.
Many pregnant families want to come in to see what we are all about as soon as they learn they are expecting! This is a good idea in order to get a sense of the space and centre atmosphere. On the other hand, we want to make sure that a tour is relevant, meaningful and addresses the needs and uniqueness of your child. So, it is a great plan to put your name on the list (knowing that even sitting on a list for 18-20 months doesn't guarantee a spot if there is no child moving out of the space when you need it!) then make an appointment for a quick "look see" when your child is about 4-6 months away from your hoped-for start date. The staff, children and personality of your child will make that visit a meaningful one for you. Then, if and when a spot is available, the centre Supervisor will contact you to come in for the whole tour. Please make every effort to bring your child along for the tour. During a tour, we discuss our policies and procedures, a bit about the schedule and routines, what to expect when you start and a more comprehensive tour of our facilities. Plan on this lasting about one hour. Timing for children in the older age groups would be reflected on the availability of space, time of year and when you are requesting placement.
Each year, an Assessor for Quality comes into our centre unannounced to ensure we are striving for quality and excellence in all aspects of our program. Because we are uniquely human with various demands and expectations from the children, parents and the various agencies, it may be difficult to achieve 100%, 100% of the time! If the number of books on the shelf is lacking (the children have put some under the cushion) or a child comes to the table without washing their hands according to the Public Health routine, it will be noted. On the other hand, Terry Tan prides itself on excelling when it comes to the day-to-day interactions and ongoing learning that is observed, and, in our minds, these are far more important areas for which to be acknowledged!
Young children are still learning to cover their mouths when they sneeze or cough and to use a tissue properly. Our expectation is that children need to be able to fully participate in our program (that means outside time as well) in order to attend. If there is fever, vomiting or diarrhea, we ask that they stay away from child care at least 24 hours symptom-free in order for your child to become fully well and protect the other children and staff. If we call you during the day to come to pick up your child, please make arrangements to do so as quickly as you can – when your child is sick, they really just want to be with their parent, snuggled and at home.
We are proud to have many long-time staff employed between both sites. Between the 23 program staff, we have 7 staff under 5 years, 9 for more than 5 years and 7 for more than 15 years. We also employ our own supply staff pool to ensure they continue to meet our expectations and needs. Our consultants, Administration and support staff (cook, housekeeper, supply) also hold many years of Terry Tan experience.
Terry Tan follows the direction of the Ministry of Education – Child Care and Early Years division, Toronto Children's Services and the extensive research that has been done regarding "How Does Learning Happen?" The educators provide a program that is directed by the interests and abilities of each child, building on their skills and knowledge of literacy, numeracy, attention, and social, emotional and physical learning. Children motivated to learn will do so with greater ease and comfort when it is according to their interests and not that of the educator. Educators have the opportunity to observe and document each child's learning progress each day, ensuring that a reliable and consistent learning environment is provided. Families are encouraged to speak with their child's educator about their child's individual skills, interests and growth.
For more detailed information, please see "How Does Learning Happen?"
First and foremost, Terry Tan prefers the personal connection at the beginning or end of the day with families and those who come to drop off or pick up their child/ren. (it is a good idea that families get to know the names of the educators and staff who may be caring for their child) We schedule interesting events and activities for families and children to experience throughout the year. We also have written daily records for you to access for the younger children as well as our website, email and Twitter. Please be sure to request time for a meeting or opportunity to get to know your child's educator and how you both may work together to support your child's early learning and development.
While technology holds an important role within our society, the need to create and maintain effective and meaningful relationships with peers and adults also remains essential. Mental health and well–being are also major stakeholders. At Terry Tan, we deliberately choose to meet these objectives without the use of I-Pads, cameras, electronic messaging and the like. We'd much rather connect with you in person when you are here to drop off or pick up your child!