What Is EarlyON?
EarlyON Child and Family Centres provide opportunities for children from birth to 6 years of age to participate in play and inquiry-based programs, and support parents and caregivers in their roles. These centres will offer safe and welcoming environments open to all families across Ontario, with qualified professionals and quality programs. Families and caregivers will be able to find support, advice, make personal connections and access a network of resources.
The Ministry of Education will work with municipalities, school boards, community partners, parents and caregivers throughout this transition to enhance programs and minimize service disruptions for children and families. Additional information about the process can be found in the Public Plan for Ontario Early Years Child and Family Centres
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Things to know when visiting an EarlyON program:
Registration – On your first visit, please be sure to fill out a registration form at sign in. To keep our records current, please complete a new registration form when you have changes i.e. you have moved, had another child, or obtained a new e-mail address. Please note that some of our programs require pre-registration. If for any reason you have registered for a program and cannot attend, please let us know, as some of our more popular programs may have a waitlist.
Sign in Sheet – It is very important that you sign in both yourself and your children every time you attend a program. This helps ensure that for fire and safety reasons we are aware of who is in the building. Signing in also helps us with statistics used for decision making and funding.
Parent/Caregiver Role – We encourage you to fully participate in all activities with your children. Every precaution will be taken by the EarlyON staff to ensure the safety and welfare of program participants. Parents/caregivers are ultimately responsible for the supervision and safety of the children they bring to the program. EarlyON programs are “drop-in” not “drop-off” programs.
How Does Learning Happen? – EarlyON programs are designed using Ontario’s pedagogy, “How Does Learning Happen?” as a guide.
Social Media and Online Documentation – Documentation is an important component of the program and includes photography and video that is used in the program, on our website and social media. If you do not want to be included in pictures/videos, please alert staff when you arrive.
Healthy Children are Welcome Children – Children who show obvious signs of illness should not attend our programs. If your child is too ill to go to school, they are too ill to attend EarlyON programs. Your child should be kept home if child has had a fever during the past 24 hours, child has a heavy nasal discharge (unless it is due to an allergy), child has a constant cough (unless it is due to an allergy), child has diarrhea (more than two loose bowel movements), child has any infectious disease (chicken pox, lice, pink eye, etc). If your child becomes ill with an infectious disease within 5 days of attending a program, please notify centre staff.
Diapering – A change table is provided or each child is to have their own change pad that is disinfected after each use.
Foot Wear – Due to the safety of adults and children, proper footwear is to be worn at all times during an EarlyON program. Indoor footwear is required.
Hot Drinks – Due to the risk of spills and burns, hot drinks such as coffee, tea and hot chocolate will not be permitted in the playrooms.
Older Children – The EarlyON programming is designed for children age 0-6 years of age. However, children over the age of 6 are welcome. Families may choose to bring alternate activities for older children.
St. Thomas (Main site) – 7 Morrison Drive, St. Thomas, ON N5R 4S5
Tiny Tots Nursery School – 217 Furnival Rd., Rodney, ON N0L 2C0
Forest Park Public School – 295 Forest Ave, St. Thomas, ON N5R 2K5
West Elgin Community Health Centre – 153 Main Street, West Lorne, ON N0L 2P0
St. Thomas Public Library – 153 Curtis Street, St. Thomas, ON N5P 3Z7
First United Church – 7 Curtis Street, St. Thomas, ON N5P 1H3
McGregor Public School – 204 John Street, Aylmer, ON N5H 1T2
Port Burwell Public Library – 21 Pitt Street, Port Burwell, ON N0J 1T0
Northside Neighbourhood Hub – 114 Confederation Drive, St. Thomas, ON N5P 4C1