Welcome to Children’s House, a Ministry of Central Baptist Church in Springfield. The Bible teaches us that children are dear to the heart of God. Jesus demonstrated a great love and special care for children. In 2021, Children’s House celebrated their 50th anniversary as a ministry here at Central Baptist Church. Below is a video of some of the highlights:
Central Baptist Church and the staff of Children’s House feel a deep responsibility to see that every child is treated with respect and dignity, and is nurtured in a positive atmosphere and a safe environment. This is our pledge to the children and to their families. Every child that comes our way is considered a sacred trust. We trust that you provide the same positive nurturing for your child or children at home and we pray that God’s richest blessings will be yours. We invite you and your family to join us for an hour of worship on Sunday mornings at the New Berlin campus at 9:00 a.m. or at the Springfield campus on Sunday mornings at 10:45 a.m. We have special worship opportunities for children.
Should you have special concerns about your child’s care we encourage you to contact the Children’s House director. However, should other needs or interests arise, please feel free to call the church office staff or any of the ministers of Central Baptist Church. We can be reached at (217) 523-3639, and we will be delighted to hear from you.
Rev. Mary Ellen Sharp
Interim Lead Pastor
Philosophy and Purpose
The heart of our philosophy is the love of Christ and his caring compassion for each person. The “whole child”- spiritually, emotionally, socially, mentally, and physically- is our concern. As we observe, guide, and have fun with each individual child, we will learn the needs, the maturity level and the potential of each. Then we may make plans to challenge individuals to grow and meet their needs to develop their potential.
The purpose of Children’s House is to provide the city of Springfield and the surrounding community with a child care program that seeks to enhance the child’s feeling of worth, competence and responsibility through a wholesome, loving, learning Christian atmosphere. Our daily regimen is structured care promoting child contentment, development, and skill. We maintain flexibility to accommodate the needs of parents and employees. Children’s House offers full day, half day, drop-in day care services, and a summer school-age program.
Children’s House Child Care is licensed by the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services to care for children 6 weeks to 12 years of age. We also meet the standards set forth in regular inspections by the Department of Public Health and the State Fire Marshall’s Office.
Hours of Operation (pre-COVID)
Children’s House is open Monday through Friday, 7:30 a.m. – 5:30 p.m. Regular office hours are 8:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.
During COVID, hours are 7:30 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. until DCFS relaxes some room capacity guidelines.
We will observe the following holidays:
• New Year’s Day
• Martin Luther King, Jr.’s Birthday
• President’s Day
* Professional Development Day (Casimir Pulaski)
• Memorial Day
• Independence Day
• Labor Day
* Professional Development Day (Columbus Day)
• Veterans’ Day
• Thanksgiving Day and the following day
• Christmas Eve Day and Christmas Day
After attending Children’s House for six (6) months, your child will be granted one week of vacation per year thereafter. Vacation days do not accumulate from the previous year and your child may not be in attendance during this time. Your vacation must be a full week and it can not be split between two or more weeks. You will not be charged for your vacation week. You are asked to give two weeks notice prior to using your vacation time.
Children’s House shall be financed primarily by student tuition and fees, secondarily, by the Central Baptist Church budget, and by other church groups and private memorials. A non-refundable registration fee of $30.00 will be assessed upon application to our child care. Payments are due each Monday or Tuesday, or the first day of the week that the child attends. There will be a $10 fee for late payments and a $20 fee will be charged for returned checks. If an account goes unpaid for two weeks, that following Monday the client will be asked to pay for that week’s care and all subsequent weeks’ care in cash or certified check until parent is current. If payment is not made, the child/children can be expelled.
There is also a $25.00 charge for parents arriving after the 5:30 p.m. (5pm during COVID) closing. After 15 minutes, parents will be billed another $25.00 for every additional 15 minutes their child is in the center.
The childcare fees are different if your child is a “regular” versus a “drop-in”. A “regular” is a child who has assigned days to attend. A “drop-in” is a child who is registered with the center and has a medical form on file but only attends occasionally. “Regulars” who attend part time can reserve occasional drop-in time at the drop-in rates. Rate sheets can be obtained through the office. Children’s House does provide discounts to families with more than one child at the day care and for Central Baptist Church members. For parents with more than one child at the day care, we offer a 5% discount off the regular rates for second sibling and subsequent children, excluding drop-ins. Central Baptist Church members receive a 10% discount for each child enrolled at regular rates and $2.00 off each session, per child, registered as a drop-in.
Refunds will not be made for periodic absences. The weekly or monthly fee will remain the same regardless of the child’s attendance or the closing of Children’s House due to holidays or bad weather.
Upon enrollment, you are required to sign an enrollment and Fee agreement. This agreement can be broken or changed with a two-week written notice from the parent. Contracts are renewed annually.
For the safety of the children and staff, Children’s House has installed a security system on all entrances, which include the north and south daycare entrances and church office entrance. Between the hours of 7:30 a.m. and 5:30 p.m., (COVID 8-5pm) the doors under the portico and the one on Jackson Street will be locked. You must ring into the day care office, identify yourself, and wait to be admitted.
The Pastor and staff members of Central Baptist Church lead chapel services twice a month for children ages three and four. They are 20 minute sessions filled with a Bible message, songs and prayer in the sanctuary. The services are not centered around the Baptist belief system, rather they are meant to bring the children together as a community for a celebration of God’s gifts to us.
Weather and Building Emergencies
Children’s House will be open on all working days except when an emergency such as loss of electricity, breakdown of heating system, or drives and parking lots are inaccessible by winter storms, necessitates a decision to close the building.
Conferences and Visitation
Please feel free to talk to our teachers. Conferences will be held at parent request and at the time of your child’s’ “Ages and Stages” evaluation. You may visit the classes at any time. Prior arrangements with your child’s teacher are not required, but appreciated.
Day Care Curriculum Objectives
1. To provide a brief daily lesson on a variety of subjects which encourage development of language and comprehension skills.
2. To coordinate language arts, music, visual arts, science, and health in order to develop the whole child.
3. To set aside a weekly sharing time in which each child is encouraged to speak and gain self confidence in the group.
4. To provide field trips and visits by resource persons to expand the child’s horizon.
5. To allow free play for children to interact and practice developing appropriate relationships with peers and adults.
6. To provide guided playtime for developing self-discipline, logical thought, and consequential behavior.
7. To assign duties which develop independence and self-sufficiency in routine tasks.
8. To promote large and small motor coordination in supervised recreation.
9. To incorporate Christian love in daily conversation and interaction but without teaching Baptist doctrine.
10. To bring forward the Christian concepts of God and Jesus at Christmas, Easter, and other appropriate times.
We are licensed to provide care for healthy children. Each child must have an examination by a licensed physician within six months prior to admission. This medical evaluation is valid for two years but immunizations must be kept up to date. If a child becomes ill during the day, a parent will be contacted and the child must be picked up.
Parents are asked to keep their child home if he/she exhibits and of these symptoms which might indicate a contagious disease: fever within 24 hours, rash, constant hacking cough, sneezing with colds, redness of the throat or eyes, vomiting or diarrhea, or extreme fatigue. When a child is sent home with a temperature, he/she may not return for 24 hours. Children who return before the required 24 hours will be sent home.
No physical punishment is used at our center, although some form of managing the child’s behavior is necessary. This is done primarily through keeping the children engaged in a wide variety of stimulating activities, providing plenty of love and physical interaction, praising good behavior and ignoring the bad, accepting and respecting the child’s feelings, and in substituting one activity for another. In addition, time out is also used. The child is removed from the group and will sit in a chair for 2-5 minutes after the child has been told what rule has been broken. If several occurrences have happened within the day or the child continues to be unmanageable, he/she may be taken out of the center temporarily or permanently.
Our meals are prepared by a qualified, experienced food service manager (Denise Perry, Copper Pot Cooking Studio) according to the required standards for a balanced meal. A menu is posted on the bulletin board near the sign-in desk. The children are given breakfast, lunch, and an afternoon snack. In the Infant room we provide a high iron formula, high iron cereal, and baby food following a monthly infant menu in accordance with the Federal Nutrition Program (CACFP). In the Infant room only, you have the option of providing your own baby foods and formula to meet each infant’s individual needs. Mother’s are welcome to breast feed or provide breast milk for their child as well.
Policies For Children
1. At Children’s House we take care and respect ourselves, each other and the environment around us.
2. We walk inside the building and are allowed to run outside.
3. We sit on our bottoms in our chairs with our feet on the floor.
4. We use quiet voices inside the building.
5. We touch other people gently and talk nicely to others.
6. We ask for a toy we want instead of taking away from others.
7. We wash our hands before and after eating and after using the restroom.
8. We rest with our heads on our beds or cots during nap time.
9. We hold hands with a partner whole on walks.
10. No gun play, war toys, or violent videos are allowed.
Policies For Parents
1. Parents must sign children in and out each day. We must be advised if someone other than a parent is to pick the child up. This person’s name should be on the consent form and he/she will be required to show a driver’s license before the child will be released.
2. Parents should give advanced notice if their child will not be attending their scheduled day or time.
3. Parents should send an extra set of clothing (labeled) to leave at Children’s House in case of an “accident”.
4. Parents may send a special blanket, toy, pacifier, etc. for their child to keep at Children’s House.
Items should be taken home on Fridays to be cleaned.
5. Parents of infants will need to provide diapers, wipes, formula, and two complete changes of clothing.
6. Parents should check with your child’s teacher, in advance, for birthday and other treat
arrangements. We request that birthday party invitations and presents not be brought to Children’s House. We do not want to hurt anyone’s feelings.
7. Children’s House Staff will not toilet train children under the age of 2.
8. Parents may park in the church parking lot while dropping off or picking up your child at the day care. It is also permitted on the right side of the ramp with a ten minute limit. Parking during the day is not permitted unless you are engaged in activities at Central Baptist Church.
9. Breakfast may not be brought into the rooms. You may sit in the hallway with your child while they finish eating.
10. All children are to be escorted to their classrooms by parents.
11. Parents should send their older children dressed in play clothes that the child can manage alone. Shoes without slippery soles or heels and sleeves that will roll up will cause fewer problems. Please clearly label all clothing and school bags with your child’s full name.
Child Pick Up Policy
(COVID HOURS: 7:30am-5pm) In the event that a child is not picked up at 5:00 p.m. (5:30pm after COVID restrictions relax), the following actions will be taken. At 5 Minutes post-closing, we will try to contact the parents. At 15 Minutes post-closing time, we will call the child’s emergency contacts. If the child is still in our care after an hour we will contact the authorities. A late fee will be assessed.