Getting Ready for School and Care

The Cornwall Child Center is open from 7:30 AM – 5:00 PM weekdays. The child center welcomes children between the ages of 1 and 5. Children must be 2 years and 9 months by September 1st to enroll before their third birthday in the Preschool Program. For this program, children should be well on their way to being toilet trained (Exceptions may apply) and should be generally independent in the bathroom. The preschool children are encouraged to use the bathroom before morning snack, outside play, and rest. The teachers are available to monitor the bathroom areas and to assist those who still require help. At all times of the day the children may use the bathroom and water fountain freely as they need to.

All children are required to have a yearly physical and an up-to-date immunization record on file at the center.

School is a new and exciting experience. During the first weeks, your child may appear more tired than usual. To help your child adjust to this change, include a quiet time or nap in his/her daily schedule. Move bedtime up to allow sufficient hours of sleep, so your child awakens on his/her own, well-rested, and with ample time to enjoy a food breakfast and get ready for school.



Please do not send your child to school if he/she appears to be ill. A day of caution on either side of an illness is always a good idea for young children. If you decide to keep your child home for the day, please notify the center. Messages may be left on the answering machine the night before or morning of. The Director should be notified if your child has a contagious disease. If your child is not well enough to participate in outdoor activities he/she should not come to the center. Keeping your child inside during outside play time is not a reasonable accommodation for us to make.

Each child receives personal days equivalent to their weekly schedule, to use towards absences. These days start in September and end in June of each year.

Keep in mind that the child center is open on many of the school holidays when Region 1 is closed, so if your child will not be coming to school, please let the director know.



Your child should come to school dressed for active play. In choosing clothes, keep in mind that each day may include messy art or cooking activities. Smocks are provided when painting but they are not a guarantee that clothes will not also get painted or soiled.

We go outdoors almost every day. The exceptions are downpours, thunder and lightening, icy or very muddy conditions, temperatures below 20 degrees, or when the air quality is poor. Snow pants, a warm jacket, and a warm hat will be needed for older months, as well as mittens that should be attacked to the jacket with clips or connected yarn pulled through the jacket sleeves. Snow boots should slip on easily be insulated. For rainy days, a raincoat with a rain hat or hood is essential, as are waterproof puddle boots. Sturdy shoes and sneakers with nonskid soles are safer for active play than party shoes. Buttons, zippers, and Velcro closures that your child can manage by himself/herself will give your child a sense of accomplishment.

An extra charge of clothes, clearly marked, appropriate for the season should be kept at the center in case of an accident. Children who are being potty trained in the toddler room and those in the preschool room that have almost mastered potty training, will need several changes of clothing. Please supply an adequate supply of diapers and wipes. The teachers will circle the items on the daily sheet which need to be replaced from the supply at the center. By state regulation, children will be changed every two hours and when needed. It will be important that every child has enough diapers and wipes to accommodate this regulation.

Most toddlers will be resting on a cot during nap time. Please provide a crib size sheet for your child’s cot. Every child will have his/her own cot clearly marked with his/her name.

Field Trips

To supplement the learning experiences of our curriculum projects, field trips may be scheduled and/or special visitors may be invited to the child center. Parents will be notified in advance of all field trips that are held off site. Trips away from the school will be for Preschool only and transportation is by school bus. All children are invited whenever we have a field trip even if the trip is planned for a day that your child is not scheduled to come.

Inclement Weather

In the event of inclement weather, the Cornwall Child Center follows Region 1 Public School schedule. Cornwall as an individual town in Region 1 will not be mentioned. All school closing and delayed opening schedule will be announced under the name “Region 1” on the local radio and TV stations. For example when there is a 90-minute delay, the Child Center will open 9:00 AM, instead of 7:30 AM and if there is an early dismissal, the center will close at 1:00. To be notified of a snow day, listen to the following stations or see the director to sign up for email/phone call alerts. There will be a maximum of 5 snow days built into the year with no charge to parents but if the center is closed beyond 5 days, due to inclement weather, the parent will be responsible to pay for those days. This is not 5 days per child, it is 5 days per winter. As always, there is no charge to the parents during holidays and shut down weeks.

Radio Television
WHDD Sharon WTNH Channel 8
WTIC Hartford WFSB Channel 3
WQQQ Salisbury WVIT Channel 30
WSBS Great Barrington CATV 6 Public Access
WZBG Litchfield


Birthdays are always important to a child and we love to share them with the children at the child center. If you plan to bring a treat, please let us know which day you will be doing this. Best practice in the early childhood setting suggests that only pre-packaged food items with the ingredients listed, are to be brought from home and share. Use the mailbox cans in the cubby room for party invitations only if all children in your child’s class are invited. 

Classroom Animals

At times, the child center will have an animal that lives at the center. The children learn to care for these animals and will be assigned special animal care jobs each day. It is not necessary for the children to bring food from home for our pets. During vacations or long weekends, your child’s teachers may be seeking a home for the pet to visit and be cared for while we are not in session. Children may take turns taking the pet home.


We are proud to say that the Cornwall Child Center teachers and children are active recyclers. Our arts and crafts experiences may utilize recycled materials. When the teachers anticipate an upcoming project needing household materials they will post their need on the parent bulletin board or in the newsletter. It is fun for the children to see what they can create from what others may call junk. Not only do we help our environment through this recycling effort but we also serve as a positive role model for our children by teaching them the importance of recycling.

Fire Drills

Practice evacuations of the building are held monthly. The teachers will help the toddlers to understand the importance of going out of the building in a safe, quiet, non-threatening way to assure their safety. We own an evacuation crib for this purpose. The older children are given instructions to help assure their safety in the event of a real emergency. Most of the teachers are trained and up to date with CPR and First Aid training. The staff meets periodically with the Cornwall Emergency crews for a review of our emergency procedures. These procedures are posted on the bulletin board. The facility and outdoor play areas are entirely smoke free. No smoking is permitted in the presence of the children.

Resource Specialists

The Connecticut Department of Public Health regulations, which govern Day Care Centers, require that the program have a medical, dental, educational, and social consultant. The following serve the Cornwall Child Center in this way:

The Visiting Nurse Association
Salisbury, CT
Fran Chapell
Canaan Day Care Center
Dr. Robert Bird
Canaan, CT
Ann M. Basti
Social Services
Early Childhood Services
Education Connection
Litchfield, CT
Early Childhood Consultation Partnership
New Milford, CT

Our consultants are available to the Director and teachers for questions and consultation regarding children, families, and issues surrounding the safety and well-being of the overall daily functioning of the child center. The nurse consultant visits the center weekly to observe best practices in the toddler room and to check the health and well-being of all the children enrolled. Parents may request private consultations with the social service consultant regarding their child’s growth, progress, and general behavior at the center, and referrals can be made with written consent from the parents.