Frequently Asked Questions. Here are some common questions about Overlee Preschool.
HOW MUCH IS TUITION?
Tuition rates vary depending on the class your child is in, a rate table can be found on the Programs page.
WHAT ARE THE SCHOOL HOURS?
Our Yellowbirds meet Tuesday/Thursday 12:30 – 2:30 in the Fall Semester and Tuesday/Wednesday/Thursday 12:30 – 2:30 in the Spring Semester. Our Bluebirds and Redbirds meet Monday – Friday 9:15 – 12:00 with the option to stay for Lunch Bunch from 12-1:30.
WHAT ABOUT THE TIMING OF YELLOWBIRDS AND THEIR NAPS?
This is the most asked questions about the Yellowbird class. The majority of the children adjust to a new nap schedule without any issues. Many of them nap right after class or shortly after arriving home. Most children start to adjust their nap schedule naturally based on each days events, whether they are at school or not. Of course, all of the other parents went through this same process and are here to help answer your questions.
HOW DOES THE APPLICATION PROCESS WORK?
Please see the Admissions Page for full details.
DOES THE DATE THAT I SUBMIT MY APPLICATION MATTER AND IS THERE A FEE?
No, the date you submit an application is not important in the selection process, except those people wishing to claim priority status and no, Overlee does not charge a fee to sumbit an application.
DOES MY CHILD NEED TO BE POTTY TRAINED TO ATTEND OVERLEE?
Overlee does not require Yellowbirds (2-3’s) or the Bluebirds (3-4’s) to be potty trained. Redbirds (4-5’s) are highly encouraged to be potty trained. When you are co-oping in the classroom, you will be responsible for your own child’s toileting needs. When you are not working in the classroom, the only adult with authorization to assist your child with toilet training is the teacher.
HOW MANY CHILDREN ARE IN EACH CLASS?
Yellowbirds – the 2- and 3-year-old class, consists of nine children Bluebirds – the 3- and 4-year-old class, consists of twelve children Redbirds – the 4- and 5-year-old class, consists of fourteen children
WHAT ARE THE AGE CUT OFFS?
We follow the Arlington County Public Schools’ birth date cut off guidelines, which is September 30th., Yellowbirds, Bluebirds and Redbirds must turn two, three or four (respectively) by September 30. In rare cases the board may vote to make an exception to this rule.
HOW OFTEN WILL I CO-OP IN THE CLASSROOM?
Yellowbirds about once every month, Bluebirds once every 12 school days, and Redbirds once every 14 school days.
I AM A FULL-TIME WORKING PARENT. HOW CAN I MAKE IT WORK?
Overlee strives to accommodate the schedules of each family’s varying needs. Parents receive the co-op schedule for the entire semester a few weeks before each semester starts; this allows parents to make plans with work well in advance of co-oping days. When last minute meetings or other work commitments come up, the Overlee families readily support one another and step in to switch co-op days. Overlee’s tight knit family community makes it possible for all parents to participate and watch their children grow.
WHAT ARE MY RESPONSIBILITIES AS A CO-OP PARENT?
The membership of Overlee Preschool consists of the parents and/or guardians of our students. At Overlee, the words “parent-run cooperative preschool” means that members do most of the hands-on work of shaping and running our children’s school. Families have one vote for each child enrolled in the school and use their votes to elect the school’s Board of Directors, to pass the school’s budget, and to decide on any other issue that might come up for a vote before the membership. Responsibilities included in your commitment as an Overlee parent are all of the following: Co-oping in Classrooms, School Improvement Projects (SIPs) and Housekeeping (HKP), Administration/Jobs, Fundraising Participation, and Meetings and Conferences. Please see the Parental Involvement page for more details.
CAN I BRING MY OTHER CHILDREN WITH ME ON MY CO-OP DAY?
Siblings cannot be in the classroom with you on your scheduled co-op day. Many parents will swap babysitting on their co-op day.
AM I, THE PARENT, THE ONLY PERSON ALLOWED TO CO-OP IN THE CLASSROOM WITH MY CHILD?
Yes, only parents are permitted to co-op in the classroom. A grandparent or someone else may visit on the day you are co-oping.
AM I, THE PARENT, THE ONLY PERSON ALLOWED TO DROP OFF OR PICK UP MY CHILD?
No, any caregiver, such as a grandparent, relative over the age of 18 years old, or babysitter can drop off and pick up any child as long as they are listed on the emergency contact form.
IS OVERLEE PRESCHOOL A RELIGIOUS ORGANIZATION?
Overlee Preschool is not affiliated with the church due to our non-profit and non-sectarian status. We have been located at the Church of the Covenant for more than 20 years and have a great relationship with the pastor and church members.
DO YOU PROVIDE SNACKS? OR LUNCH?
Snacks are provided by the co-oping parent each day. We do not provide lunch. Children who are signed up for lunch bunch bring their own lunch. Teachers will sit with the children during lunch to encourage eating.
MY CHILD HAS NUT ALLERGIES. HOW DOES OVERLEE ATTEND TO SUCH NEEDS?
Peanut/Tree Nut-Aware Environment: We are a nut-aware school. Due to possible severe allergies, nuts and nut products are not allowed; this includes peanut butter, almond butter, and other spreads, almonds, brazil nuts, cashews, hazelnuts/filberts (Nutella) macadamia nuts, pecans, pine nuts/pignolias, walnuts, etc. Parent, and anyone else entering Overlee Preschool will not bring ANYTHING into the classrooms.
WHAT IF I AM SCHEDULED TO WORK IN THE CLASSROOM WHEN MY CHILD IS SICK?
If your child is sick and you are scheduled to work in the classroom, you will need to contact one of the other parents in your class to request a switch. Our families are wonderful when it comes to switching co-op days, even in a last-minute situation.
ARE YOU FULLY LICENSED?
We are state and county licensed, fully insured, and both of our teachers are members of the NAEYC (National Association for the Education of Young Children).
HOW DOES MY CHILD LEARN THROUGH PLAY?
Play promotes learning, physical play helps children develop perceptual, motor and cognitive skills. Creative play helps children develop problem-solving skills, social competence, and helps children understand their feelings. A wide variety of materials and toys are used to maximize the play environment. In addition to an enhanced environment, preschools provide the opportunity for the socialization so necessary to early learning. While it is possible to provide your child with many opportunities to practice social skills, it is difficult to duplicate the kind of group interactions children encounter in a preschool school setting.
HOW ARE CONFLICTS RESOLVED IN THE CLASSROOM?
Conflict is seen as an opportunity for learning. It is our belief that young children often have a limited ability to express emotions and frustrations to others. The goal for children is social competence. Throughout their years at Overlee, the children will be supported and helped to use age appropriate ways to resolve and handle situations. They are encouraged to use their words to express their needs and ideas. Children are given opportunities to problem solve with each other, under the guidance of the teacher, on a daily basis.
HOW WILL I LEARN ABOUT MY CHILD'S PROGRESS IN SCHOOL?
Every parent may ask questions about their child’s progress at any time, our teachers have a very open door policy and are always available to speak with parents. However, there are scheduled conferences usually in November and March.
WHAT IF MY CHILD HAS PROBLEMS WITH ADJUSTING TO SEPARATION FROM ME?
Adjusting to a school can be difficult for some children. We understand that and the teachers work closely and personally with you as a family to help in this transition. For the Yellowbirds, your teacher will arrange a short home visit with you and your child to introduce herself as well as share songs and finger plays that will be done at school the first week. It is also a time to gather information about the child so you can work together to help the transition from home to school. For the other classes, the teachers will work directly with the parents and child to make a developmentally appropriate plan for the child if issues about separation occur. In all cases, Overlee’s first week of school is a transitional one. We have shortened hours as well as extra co-oper’s to help train and ease everyone into the school year.
DO THE CHILDREN GO ON FIELD TRIPS?
Our Bluebirds and Redbirds take a walking field trip to Potomac Overlook in the spring. Every year we have the Arlington County Fire Department and a Police Officer visit the school. All classes are welcome to attend on those days.
ARE THERE ANY SPECIAL ACTIVITIES SCHEDULED?
Overlee has many traditions that have been going on for years, some for over 40+ years. In the fall, we have a Halloween parade for the children and the parents come to watch. In the spring, we have our Spring Hat Parade, parents also are welcome to attend this event as well. Our Bluebirds and Redbirds have special “last day of the year” events as well. There are many more activities that each class does throughout the year.
ARE THERE OPPORTUNITIES OUTSIDE OF THE CLASSROOM TO GET TO KNOW OTHER FAMILIES?
Yes, Overlee has a wide variety of events to get to know other families. We have a back to school playdate on our playground, Happy Hours, Restaurant nights, our Spring Silent Auction, and Alumni Playdates, and our Spring Family Picnic, just to name a few. In addition, many parents also schedule regular playdates for kids, siblings, and caregivers every month at different locations.
WHAT IS YOUR SCHOOL CALENDAR?
School opens in mid-September and closes the Thursday before Memorial Day. Overlee follows the Arlington Public Schools calendar for most, but not all, holidays. Our summer camp begins the Tuesday after Memorial Day and typically runs through the end of July.
WHAT IS YOUR INCLEMENT WEATHER POLICY?
The snow day policy is subject to change at the Director and President’s discretion. If Arlington County Schools: Are closed – Overlee is closed. Open 1 hour late – Overlee will open on time. Open 2 hours late – Redbirds/Bluebirds will start at 10:00 a.m., Yellowbirds meet on time. Close early – Yellowbirds do not meet.
HOW IS COMMUNICATION HANDLED AT THE PRESCHOOL?
Parents are kept informed through our internal website, e-mail exchange, a monthly newsletter and the hallway bulletin board, the parent/teacher conferences twice a year, and the evening general meetings. Emergency notifications and alerts are handled through our emergency telephone system.
HOW DOES OVERLEE PREPARE CHILDREN FOR KINDERGARTEN?
Preschool is the foundation for a child’s education. The skills and knowledge, not to mention aptitudes and attitudes, developed in early childhood will have dramatic impact on future success in later school years. Overlee Preschool helps children to develop a sense of mastery and self-esteem. Children gain confidence when learning is easy and fun. Overlee Preschool provides opportunities for children to engage in activities that will encourage the development of social, cognitive, perceptual and motor skills. Children are also provided with the opportunity to develop the skills necessary to work in a group environment.