Frequently Asked Questions

For your convenience, we’ve compiled a list of the questions we hear most frequently. We also invite you to review our parent handbook for more details or for clarification on our policies. If you still have questions, give us a call—we’re happy to help!

How do I enroll my child at Spring Valley Montessori Academy?

We are thrilled to welcome new members to our family! Please visit our Application page for information about enrolling your child in one of our programs.

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What are your program hours?

Early Bird Care: 8:15–9:00 a.m.

Morning Program: 9:00 a.m.–noon

Just Lunch: noon–12:45 p.m.

Afternoon Program: noon–2:00 p.m.

To learn more about our programs, please visit our Programs page.

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Does your preschool offer breakfast and lunch?

We do not serve meals at Spring Valley. If your child is enrolled in our afternoon programming, you will need to send lunch to school with him or her. We are a nut-free school, so please do not include any foods with nuts or nut products in your child’s lunch. We do, however, serve snacks in both our morning and afternoon programs.

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Can I bring treats for my child’s birthday?

We would love to celebrate your child’s birthdays! Feel free to bring healthy, nut-free snacks to share. All snacks should be ready to serve and easy to manage. If your child has a food allergy and you would like him or her to participate in birthday celebrations, please send a package of non-allergenic treats for your child. We will store the treats and serve them as a  substitute for birthday snacks when appropriate.

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What if my child requires medication during the day?

We will administer prescription medications in accordance with state regulations and with physician and parental approval. Please complete our medication authorization form, and bring the medication in the original, labeled packaging to the front office. We do not distribute over-the-counter medications or vitamins to children.

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Do you adjust your hours in inclement weather?

We follow Montgomery County Public Schools’ inclement weather policy. If Montgomery County is closed, we are closed. If Montgomery calls a delayed start, we will open at 10:00 a.m.; if Montgomery closes early, we will cancel afternoon classes.

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I would like to volunteer. How can I get started?

To allow children to become familiar with our program, we welcome adult visitors into our classrooms after October. If you would like to visit, please call the front office to make an appointment. If you would like to volunteer, we would love to have you! Please call us to make arrangements and visit our Choose Us page for more information on what parent involvement looks like. You may need to complete a background check prior to helping in our classrooms.

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Does my child need a backpack?

No. We will provide each student with a tote bag for carrying work and messages to and from school, and we ask that you discourage your child from bringing toys from home. We would hate it if something precious to your child was lost or damaged.

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What should my child wear to school?

Please dress your children in comfortable, weather-appropriate clothing and shoes each day. We also ask that you keep two sets of clothes at school in case of an emergency. Please bring each set in a separate Ziplock bag with your child’s name on it. All coats, hats, and boots should also be labeled with your child’s name. If your child is still in diapers, you will need to provide two packages of diapers and wipes. No Pull-Ups, please. We will notify you when your child’s hygiene or clothing supply needs to be replenished.

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What is your preschool's morning schedule?

We have arranged our morning routine to offer a consistent order to our days. Although the schedule differs from class to class, each includes a balance of child and teacher-initiated activities, proper hygiene, exercise class, and outdoor play periods. Here is a sample schedule:

8:50–9:10 a.m.

  • Arrival
  • Temperature check and standard questions regarding COVID-19 symptoms in the household
  • Child enters school with a teacher
  • Hand-washing
  • Join teachers and friends in the classroom

9:00–9:15 a.m.

  • Welcome songs, calendar, numbers, weather, and plans for the day

9:15–9:45 a.m.

  • Exercise class (outside, weather permitting)

9:45–10:00 a.m.

  • Songs, movement, and stories
  • Visit bathroom and wash hands

10:00–10:30 a.m.

  • Outdoor play

10:30–10:45 a.m.

  • Wash hands
  • Snack time!

10:45–11:45 a.m.

  • Thematic circle time and guided lessons
  • Small group learning
  • Children explore the classroom, receive individual instruction, and work independently or with friends

11:45 a.m.–noon

  • Wash hands, closing songs, and dismissal
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What are Spring Valley Montessori Academy's safety procedures relating to COVID-19?

Spring Valley Montessori Academy places the health and safety of our children and staff as our first priority. We provide a quality and safe environment during the COVID-19 pandemic. As more information becomes available, we adapt and make changes to our safety measures and protocols. We follow the guidance from the CDC and Maryland State Department of Education. In line with safety measures, we implement the following protocols and policies to prevent the spread of COVID-19:

COVID-19 Safety Protocol Measures

Daily Health Check

All staff, families, children, and their household members must conduct a daily health check before coming to Spring Valley Montessori Academy. Should you or any household member have any of the following symptoms, we ask you to remain out that day and notify the director.

  • Fever of 100.4 F or higher, now or in the preceding 72 hours (or would have, but have used fever reducing medicine)
  • Cough
  • Sore Throat
  • Muscle Aches
  • Difficulty Breathing
  • New Loss of Taste or Smell

Drop Off/Pick Up

  1. Parents/guardians are limited from entering the facility. Contact between parents/guardians, staff, and other children is minimized at pick up/drop off.
  2. Cloth face coverings are worn by parents/guardians and involved staff at drop off/pick up.
  3. Temperature checks are performed on children at arrival by parent/guardian, directly observed by teacher. The child’s parent/guardian should use a personal thermometer brought from home. In the event that a family does not have access to a personal thermometer for their child, the parent/guardian should use a thermometer provided by SVMA.
  4. After taking the temperature, the child’s parent/guardian shows the temperature result to the teacher for recording.
  5. Symptom checks are performed at arrival to include any possible COVID-19 symptoms in children and household members. For example, the child’s parent/guardian is asked if the child has any symptoms of COVID-19 and if there are persons in the household with symptoms of COVID-19.
  6. Following temperature and symptom check, parent/guardian removes child from car seat and teacher escorts child into the school. For families who walk to school, please maintain social distance. Temperature/symptom checks are conducted outside of the school’s main entrance.

Social Distancing

  1. SVMA practices social distancing the best way possible, within the school setting and on the playground.
  2. Groups are restricted to no more than 15 people (children + staff).
  3. SVMA limits mixing of groups in common areas.
  4. Outdoor activities are extended, if applicable and weather permitting.
  5. Children are educated about social distancing and given verbal reminders.

Other Infection Control Measures

  1. Staff are self-monitoring their temperature and any COVID-19 symptoms in themselves and household members and report temperature to the facility director/administrator upon arrival.
  2. Hand washing/hand hygiene occurs for all children and staff upon arrival and frequently throughout the day.
  3. Staff wear cloth face coverings while in the facility- when this can be accomplished safely and consistently.
  4. If children, two-years and older, can safely and appropriately wear, remove, and handle a face covering, it is recommended (but not required) that they wear a cloth face covering while inside the facility.
  5. Routine cleaning and disinfecting occur multiple times per day - with emphasis on cleaning and disinfecting bathrooms, frequently touched objects, and surfaces inside/ outside.
  6. Toys that cannot be cleaned and sanitized are not being used. SVMA is cleaning and sanitizing toys multiple times per day or after each use when appropriate.

If a child or staff member is confirmed to have COVID-19

If a staff member or child attending SVMA is a confirmed case of COVID-19, we follow CDC and MDH/MSDE guidance:

  • Contact the licensing specialist and local health department immediately,
  • Close for 2–5 days while determining long-term course, which may include closure for 14 days or more,
  • Communicate with staff and parents regarding the confirmed case and exposure,
  • Clean and disinfect the childcare facility as recommended by the CDC, and
  • Determine duration of program closure based on guidance from the local health department. The licensing specialist should be involved in the closure decision and process.
  • Everyone potentially exposed to the person who tested positive for COVID-19 should monitor carefully for symptoms. Individuals who had close, prolonged contact with the person who tested positive should quarantine at home for 14 days after the last day of exposure.

If a child has a household contact who is a positive case or probable case of COVID-19

Children, who have a household contact who is a positive case or probable case of COVID-19, may return to SVMA 14 days after the household contact is released from isolation according to CDC guidance. The child must undergo this additional 14-day quarantine because the child could have been infected on the final day of the household member’s isolation. The parent should provide evidence (e.g., a note from a health care provider) that the household contact has been released from isolation at the time the child returns to childcare.

* The COVID-19 pandemic is a challenging and fluid situation. Federal, state, and local orders and guidance may change frequently, therefore our policies and procedures are subject to change accordingly.

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