Frequently Asked Questions

General FAQs:
What is OCF?
OCF stands for Oswego Christian Foundation.  OCF is the non-profit parent entity for Prairie Pals Christian Preschool & Childcare.
What are your center office hours?
Our regular office hours are Monday - Friday 8:30 am to 3:30 pm.
Our summer office hours are Monday - Thursday 8:00 am to 12:00 pm. 
I'm interested in learning more about your programs.  Do you offer facility tours?
Yes, we do offer tours of our preschool and childcare facility.  It is best to call ahead and schedule a time with one of our directors so they can set aside adequate time to answer any questions you may have about our programs.  Please be prepared to show a photo ID when you enter the building.  
Childcare FAQs:
What are the hours of the childcare center?
Prairie Pals childcare center is open Monday - Friday from 6:00 am to 6:15 pm.
When is the childcare center closed?
Prairie Pals childcare center will close to observe the following holidays: New Year's Day, Memorial Day, Independence Day, Labor Day, Thanksgiving Day, Friday following Thanksgiving, Christmas Eve and Christmas Day.  We will close at 3:00 pm on New Year's Eve.
My child is sick and won't be in childcare today.  Why do I still owe for her attendance if she isn't coming?
Childcare payments are required according to your tuition agreement regardless of attendance.  Our staffing and meal planning schedules are based on expected attendance and scheduling and shopping are often handled at least one week in advance.  
My child has had a fever and/or has been vomiting, when can he return to childcare?
In order to help prevent the spread of illness in our classrooms, children need to stay home from childcare until they have been fever free without the use of fever reducing medicine and without any vomiting for 24 hours.  If your child is sent home from childcare with a fever or for vomiting, they will need to stay home from childcare and preschool the following day, as well. 
My child attends your preschool on Tuesdays and Thursdays.  If I have an appointment, would it be possible to have my child "drop-in" to the childcare for an afternoon following preschool on occasion?
Unfortunately, we are unable to accommodate "drop-in" requests in our childcare.  Because we schedule our staff based on the number of children we anticipate having in attendance, we do not have the flexibility to add children to each childcare room on an inconsistent basis.  If you have a recurring need for childcare, you can enroll for as few as two full days each week in our childcare if there is availability in the appropriate childcare room.  Please contact the Childcare Director to inquire about availability.
Preschool FAQs:
Can I enroll my child who is still wearing pull-ups in your preschool program?
We do accept children in pull-ups in our 2s and our 3s programs who are actively potty training.  Our programs require that your child be independent in the bathroom which includes: using the toilet without assistance, changing clothing without assistance, pulling up & down his/her own clothes and washing and drying his/her hands.  You will be contacted if your child has an accident at school, as the Preschool staff cannot change your child's clothing.  We suggest you send your child in comfortable loose fitting clothing that your child can easily get on and off quickly.  This helps make trips to the bathroom easy for children.
If I register for preschool and decide to unenroll before the program begins, will my registration fee be refunded?
Unfortunately, no.  Because our classes are filled on a first-come, first served basis, our non-refundable registration fee is designed to hold your child's spot in a classroom with limited space.  If you decide at a later time that you will not be attending our program, we have likely turned away other children that may have been able to fill that space.
When does enrollment begin?
Open enrollment for our preschool program begins in January for the school year that will begin in August of the same year.  Enrollment is first come, first served and classes tend to fill quickly.  If you are interested in our preschool program, we recommend you tour our facility in the Fall or Winter prior to our open enrollment period so you will be ready to enroll in January.
I'm ready to enroll!  What do I need to do first?
To enroll in our preschool program, you will need to complete and return an Enrollment Reservation Form (which can be found on the Preschool Forms & Information page of our website), along with your non-refundable enrollment fee.  Once we receive your form and payment, your child's spot is reserved.  We will then provide you with the remaining forms needed in our registration packet that can be completed and returned in the Summer before orientation.  Please note that we can only accept cash or check for the enrollment reservation fee.
What is the "school year" calendar?
Our preschool calendar follows the Oswego Community School District #308 school calendar.  The school year begins in August and ends in May.
I have enrolled my child in the 2s class, but he will turn 3 in October.  Will you move him into a 3s class after his birthday?
No, your child will remain in the same class for the entire school year.  Children are placed in their preschool classes by their age at the start of school, because this will be the same "peer group" that your child will advance with each year until they are ready to begin Kindergarten. 
My child has had a fever and/or has been vomiting, when can she return to preschool?
In order to help prevent the spread of illness in our classrooms, children need to stay home from preschool until they have been fever free without the use of fever reducing medicine and without any vomiting for 24 hours. If your child is sent home from preschool with a fever or for vomiting, they will need to stay home from preschool the following day, as well if they are regularly scheduled to attend.
Can I volunteer in my child's preschool class?
We love to have parents volunteer in our preschool classes!  We have three class parties during the school year that parents have an opportunity to plan and help coordinate.  In addition to the class parties, our teachers welcome parent participation as mystery readers and other activities that vary by classroom.  You can fill out a Parent Volunteer form to let your child's teacher know of your interest.
Billing / Payment FAQs:
What payment methods do you accept?
We accept cash or check payments in the building.  If you are making a cash payment, please plan to have the exact amount due as we do not keep cash on hand to make change.  If you prefer to pay with a credit card, you can do so using our PayPal link that can be found on our homepage.  Please note that we do NOT have the ability to run your credit card onsite or over the phone.
When is my childcare tuition payment due?
Childcare payments are paid weekly and due on the first day of your child's scheduled attendance.
When is my preschool tuition payment due?
Preschool tuition is paid monthly and due on the 1st day of the month.  Payments not received by the 7th will result in a $15 late fee that accumulates each week.
My accountant says that I need a tax id and/or statement.  Do you provide that information?
Tax statements are available upon request.  Please contact the bookkeeper if you need to make a request.