Parents should apply for preschool classes during the calendar year that their child turns two. Here are some important things to remember when applying for classes
- You may apply to a class that is currently running at any time (including any childcare program). Spaces are offered subject to availability. If no space is available you will be placed on a waitlist
Future Preschool programs are added in mid-October each year. Future Development Programs are added in the early Spring each year. Application dates are as follows:
- Vancouver, Coquitlam and Maple Ridge Preschool - Oct 28
- Ladner and Tsawwassen Preschool - Oct 29
- Aldergrove, Abbotsford and Chilliwack Preschool - Oct 30
- Surrey, White Rock and Langley Preschool - Nov 1
- Development Programs - May 1
The Wind & Tide Administration office is a wealth of resources for parents who want to learn more about Wind & Tide for their future preschooler. Contact our Administration office with any questions you may have. The Administration office can also provide you with access to an online parent video. On this video, we explain some of the exciting things your child will learn in the Wind & Tide program. We also encourage you to create a family account so that you can receive important updates regarding this event and other Wind & Tide parent events, directly by email. Because teacher placement may vary from year to year, we encourage families to wait until they have been offered a position in an upcoming class before arranging orientation visits to the specific preschool class. Families wishing to apply for childcare are encouraged to call the childcare location directly to arrange an orientation of the facility when their child is two years of age.
While there is never a definitive answer, if you are in an area with multiple locations, your chances are quite good. Many families apply for multiple classes, and thus acceptance of a preschool space often results in movement in multiple waitlists. Even if you are in an area with fewer locations (or just one), it is still quite possible to gain placement in a class as we do experience movement throughout the year, with increased movement during late November, early Spring and Summer months. Our afternoon classes experience considerably more movement so we like to encourage families to consider afternoon classes should you be further down on the morning waitlist(s).
Waitlists are based on original application time for EACH specific class. Most waitlist movement for preschool classes occurs in early November, March, as well as late June and early September. Most waitlist movement for childcare locations occurs in June and September. When a space become available for your child, you will be notified by phone and email. Families are generally given a two-day window to respond to the placement offer and ten days to submit the applicable registration fee and payment form. Therefore, if you are on a waitlist, we encourage you to let us know if you will be away during a time of active waitlist movement. Your child will stay on your requested waitlist(s) throughout the entire year. If a position becomes available during the school year, you will have the opportunity to either accept, transfer, or to decline the placement being offered.
Absolutely! We recommend that you only accept placements that will work for you, however you are certainly welcome to stay on waitlist for another preferred class. You can even begin in a class at one location and/or time, and transfer mid-year to another that you are waitlisted for if a space becomes available.
Although it is rare, you may encounter an increase in your waitlist number. If a family has been removed from a waitlist in error, they do have the ability to request being placed back on the waitlist, and will retain their original application time. Also, if a family moves, they are able to transfer to another location's waitlist and maintain their original application time.
Alumni families can register at 9:00pm on the application date for their desired location. New families can register at 10:00pm. While this gives alumni families an advantage, it is still a first-come basis, and we encourage alumni families to mark their calendars and apply promptly at 9:00pm. Alumni families must also ensure they log-in with their existing Parent Portal account, rather than creating a new one. If you have forgotten your log-in details, please contact the Administration office to reset your account.
We are always trying to maintain a balance between an appreciation for those families who have enrolled with sensitivity to other loyal Wind & Tide families on our waitlists. Once the school year begins, our withdrawal policy requires 30 days written notice; however, deposit refunds will not be given between June 30th and the start of the school year for several reasons. The schools are closed during the summer months, and thus any families that were hoping for a space are not able to view the school or meet the teachers. This makes it extremely difficult to fill summer openings, and is also unfair to families that were hoping for placement and had to commit to an alternative choice. We also have to confirm our location leases and our staffing prior to June 30th, without the summer non-withdrawal policy, many families would neglect to inform us of their change in plans, directly affecting the operations of the location. Non-refundable deposits help us to encourage families to let us know in a timely manner that they wish to decline their saved spaces.
If you register after June 30th, we will require that your registration fee and deposit be submitted within ten business days of accepting your class placement. Both the registration fee and deposit are non-refundable.
We understand completely that most children do not respond well to our timelines on this subject; however we do ask that parents be working on potty training with their child. We also know that even a fully potty-trained child may get engrossed in play and learning, and may have an accident. Should this occur, our teachers are very discrete and will comfort your child without blame or shame. It comes with the territory of the preschool age. The only thing that you need to be aware of is that in our preschools, teacher are not permitted to change a child if they have a bowel-movement, as licensing requires a specific set up (classroom equipped with a change table, specific cleaning stations, etc) which we do not have at our preschools due to the class length and infrequent necessity. It is quite rare that a bowel-movement accident happens, as many children quickly adjust to the new routine, and "save" those fun clean-ups for at home. But, you need to be aware that if it does happen, the teachers will call (or a contact) right away. The teachers will offer support during potty training through bathroom reminders, scheduled bathroom breaks and can offer further suggestions if necessary. Also, sometimes the environment helps spur children onwards in their training efforts, seeing their peers using the toilet may encourage them to quickly train when they were otherwise struggling or reluctant.
We know that many families get nervous about afternoon classes, but there are many advantages. Many children begin to reduce or eliminate naps between 2 1/2 - 3 1/2 years of age, so by the time September arrives, you may find that the afternoon class works great. If a child is napping sporadically, it also keeps them very occupied and engaged on days they are at preschool (not napping) and can result in more consistent naps on their non-preschool days. The afternoon class also gives families more time to get ready and out the door before school, and often results in a calmer class environment. Electing for an afternoon class can also assist in preparing children for full-day Kindergarten. In regards to waitlists, afternoon class positions tend to come up more frequently than morning classes, and thus we encourage families to consider this option. Keep in mind that your child will also remain on the morning waitlist(s) (if requested) and will be offered a transfer at any time a space becomes available.
We strive to always meet the needs of our communities and will consider adding new locations in areas that families request, but it is important to remember that we can be restricted by available quality space to lease. We always encourage families to contact us if they have an idea for a possible space, or if they would like to see a Wind & Tide in a particular location/area. We also strive to never close a school, as we know families depend on our locations. However, because we lease most of our locations, there may be circumstances beyond our control. Although uncommon, we also reserve the right to cancel programs due to low enrolment, or staffing. In the event that a location is forced to close, we will try our best to get you in the closest available class of choice.
We are a private preschool which runs independently of the churches or schools where we lease space from. Wind and Tide is, however, a Christian-based program and we seek to demonstrate and promote Christian values and attitudes. Most of the families that attend our programs are from varying backgrounds and belief-systems and we do not require that families be Christian to enrol in our programs. We welcome all families of all faiths and without judgment.
Because each location only has a few new 4-year-old students starting each year, we do not have an Open House at each location specifically for the 4-year-old students. You are welcome, however, to book an appointment to observe the class at your location once you have been given a placement in a class. This process will be outlined when you are given confirmation of your placement or transfer.
It means that we will teach all children that come to Wind & Tide that God has created an amazing world; that God loves everyone and we can talk to Him whenever we want; that God sent his son Jesus to show us how much He loves us and that God designed us to be happiest when we are loving His world and each other. As a company there are some things that we will NOT teach your child.
- We will NOT teach that only families with similar belief systems are welcome. Everyone is welcome!
- We will NOT lead children to become 'Christians'. Wind & Tide is an opportunity for exposure to basic Christian values, many of which are shared by other faiths and secular society. It is not an attempt to prompt a commitment.
- We will NOT disregard other faiths that are represented in the classroom. We will NOT set aside separate teaching times for bible teaching.
- And lastly, we will never use our positions as teachers insensitively.