COVID-19 Adjustments for the 2020/2021 school year

Shine Nurture Center 2020/2021 - What Families Need to Know

COVID 2019 Handbook Addendum *When there is a conflict between this document and the handbook, this document will be considered the most current information


Program Structure Updates: 


Updated Ratios & Group Sizes:

  • Infants (ages 8 weeks - 18 months): 1:3 ratio, 2 teachers, 6 children in infant room

  • Toddlers (ages 18 months - 3 years): 1:3 ratio, 2 teachers, 6 children in the toddler room

  • Preschool Plus (ages 3 - 6 years): 1:6 ratio; 1 teacher & 6 children in the preschool room 


Full-time Care Only:

  • To minimize germ spread and contamination, all children must be enrolled full-time (no part-time care option) & plan to attend full-time (cannot pay for a full-time spot, but go to public Kindergarten 2 days per week, for example). We will re-evaluate the necessity of this rule for Summer 2021. 


Updated Pricing: 

  • All pricing will be increased 15 - 25% to cover lower ratios, sick days for teachers, new equipment, and safety & cleaning protocol improvements. New pricing: 

    • Infants - $1550/month 

    • Toddlers - $1550/month

    • Preschool Plus - $1400/month

  • 15% sibling discount for youngest child

  • Pricing still includes 1 home-made lunch and 2 healthy snacks per day. 

Operating Hours:

  • Drop-off: 8:15am - 8:45am

  • Pick-up: 4:00pm - 4:20pm 

  • Calendar & days off will remain the same. 

Procedural & Day-to-Day Updates: 

AM Drop-Off & PM Pick-up Procedure 

  • Drop-off will ONLY be available from 8:15am - 8:45am each day, pick-up will ONLY be available from 4:00pm - 4:20pm (except under extenuating circumstances). 

  • We will do a drop-off line & pick-up line, where your children will be brought to and from your car by a staff member.

  • Drop-offs will include a visual inspection of the child for signs of illness and taking the child’s temperature using a thermometer. 

  • Staff members will escort the child(ren) to the lead teacher who will ensure proper handwashing occurs. 

  • To limit germ exposure, parents are asked to not enter the building nor the enclosed play area at this time. We will continue to share updates and pictures via brightwheel, send out newsletters, have parent-teacher meetings, and events like “Saturday School” to keep parents involved in their child’s education. 


Daily Routine adjustments

  • We will be outdoors as much as possible, even more than last year. We are adding shade to the playground areas and will also spend lots of time in the woods (woods are used by toddlers & preschoolers primarily). 

  • When indoors, every effort will be made to give children sufficient space to prevent crowding (especially during naps) and to increase ventilation (opening doors, windows, and running air filtration).

  • We will not run a fear-based program. Children WILL be able to play with their friends, run, hug, and touch each other. As always, we will say “kissing is for family members only” and we will try our best to keep babies from gnawing on each other. However, despite our increased measures of protection, we must accept that the children at Shine will share germs with friends (and us teachers too), and we acknowledge that play and touch are an essential part of childhood. 



  • Shine recognizes that masks can be strange for young children, and children and babies rely on our facial expressions for learning and communicating.

  • Masks or face shields will be worn by teachers while inside.

  • Masks will be worn by the employees doing health screens in the morning.

  • We ask that parents wear masks during pick-up and drop-off.

  • We are allowing employees to conduct their own risk/benefit analysis and wear masks for their own protection while outside if they so choose.

  • Children will not wear masks at Shine. 



  • Children will wash their hands upon arrival. 

  • Children and staff will wash hands very frequently during the day - including but not limited to: at drop-off and pick-up, before eating, after toileting/diaper changes, after wiping/blowing noses, upon coming inside, & anytime hands are dirty. 


Cleaning & Sanitization 

  • Cleaning and sanitizing practices will be intensified.  Toys & Works that are used will be sanitized daily. Items that are put in mouths will be removed immediately to be cleaned and sanitized. 

  • We will routinely clean, sanitize, and disinfect surfaces and objects that are frequently touched (doorknobs, light switches, classroom sink handles, countertops, desks, chairs, cubbies, and playground structures, etc.) 

  • We have hired a weekly cleaning crew to supplement the cleaning that teachers do daily. 

  • A HEPA air filter has been added to each classroom. 


Snacks / Meals

  • We will eat meals and snacks outside whenever possible - we ordered multiple new picnic tables so that we can all eat outside.  

  • Parents must provide 1 labeled sippy cup or water bottle for water for your child each day.  We will not use water cups in the classroom at this time.

  • We are switching to compostable plates, so that food waste and plates can go directly into the compost bin. 



  • The cots and cribs will be spaced out as much as possible. Children will be 6 feet apart when on cots and placed in head to toe in order.

  • Cribs and cots are sanitized at the end of each week. 


Items to bring from home

  • All families are asked to please minimize the items brought from home to Shine - do not include unnecessary items in your bag. Children should not bring in toys other than their one cuddly. 

  • Infants: We will supply crib sheets and lightweight blankets - do not send rest items with your infant.

  • Toddlers & Preschoolers: Please bring 1 rest blanket for your child and one cuddly item in one small bag on Mondays. We will send these items home to be laundered on Fridays. 

  • All families: Please bring 2 extra sets of clothing for your child in a labeled ziplock bag. If your child soils his/her clothes and we use the back-up, please bring 1 more set the following day. Please make sure these items are freshly laundered. 

  • Shine provides sunscreen & bug spray. 

  • Children who are bottle-fed will need to bring labeled bottles from home. Please give bottles in a bag to the staff member at drop-off. 

  • Children who are in diapers will need to bring diapers and wipes in. Cloth diapers will be sent home daily. 

  • Reminder: No jewelry (including amber necklaces), coins, or small toys should be brought or worn to Shine. 


Employment & Child Care Agreements 

  • Employees and enrolled families will be asked to sign an agreement that they will not come to Shine if they are sick or have any known exposures to people who have been diagnosed with COVID-19.

  • Employees and enrolled families are also asked to be responsible in their personal life, minimizing their risk of infection by practicing safe social distancing, mask-wearing in public, and socializing only with those who have also been responsible. 


Suspected or Confirmed Diagnoses: 

  • Shine will notify all enrolled families if there is a confirmed or suspected COVID-19 exposure at Shine, but we will not release the identity of the person diagnosed.

  • Shine will work with the local health officials to determine appropriate next steps, including whether an extended dismissal duration is needed to stop or slow further spread of COVID-19.

  • If an employee is exposed to someone who tests positive for COVID, the employee must go into quarantine for up to 14 days since their exposure to that person. They may return to work after:

    • 14 days and no symptoms,

    • Or 7 days and no symptoms and proof of a negative COVID test

    • Or if diagnosed themselves, after all symptoms have resolved and they provide a note from their health care provider that states they are no longer contagious and they are physically fit for work.

  • If an employee tests positive for COVID, the children in that employee’s classroom will be sent home and all must quarantine for 14 days before returning to group care. The employee may return to work after all symptoms have resolved and they provide a note from their health care provider that states they are no longer contagious and they are physically fit for work. The classroom will be deep cleaned and sanitized before re-opening.

  • If a child is in a home with or has a direct exposure to someone who later tests positive for COVID, that child should go into quarantine for 14 days since their exposure to that person. If the child or other family members develop symptoms, we ask that the child remain quarantined from Shine until all family member’s symptoms are resolved.

  • If a child is diagnosed with COVID, that child should remain home until all symptoms are resolved.All of the children and employees in that child’s classroom will be sent home and must quarantine for 14 days before returning to group care. Parents must provide documentation from the child’s health care provider that states they are no longer contagious and able to return to Shine. The classroom will be deep cleaned and sanitized before re-opening.


Sick Days

  • In order to prioritize health above all, Shine employees are being granted paid sick days this school year. 

  • We will maintain a substitute teacher on staff to fill in for a sick teacher. If multiple teachers are sick, we may not be able to meet ratios and would have to close the center in this case. 


Shine reserves the right to close or halt the program at any time, including if there is a suspected or actual diagnosis of COVID-19 and/or if there is a large spike in cases locally. It is also possible that the Governor will choose to shut all daycare centers down again. We will do our best to stay open, but in all likelihood we will have to close for some days this school year.  Monthly tuition may be used to cover up to 10 days (2 weeks) of closure (for any reason) per school year and there will be no reimbursement for closures of 10 days or less. 

Shine Nurture Center

5100 Colerain Ave, Cincinnati, OH 45223