LOL FAMILIES HANDBOOK

Love of Learning Families is a secular open minded community of homeschooling families in the Tampa Bay area. We strive for tolerance, respect, and friendship for our children and ourselves. We are supportive of attachment parenting and natural family living, and we welcome families of all faiths and cultures and are an LGBTQ+ embracing community. We are a cooperative of parents that coordinate classes for our children to supplement and enrich the learning that you do at home. 

Please read through and familiarize yourself with our handbook.  The guidelines and policies indicated here were formed by the Admin team to ensure the safety of our members and the respectful use of our rented facilities.  The Admin team reserves the right to alter or add to these policies as needed. The Admin team also reserves the right to deny membership in or access to LOL Families coop, coop functions and online forums owned by LOL Families at any time to any one, for reasons including but not limited to disciplinary action, child related criminal investigations or convictions, or bad karma.  

Fees Required to Participate

The fee to participate in LOL Families is $25.00 per family each semester. This covers our rent, insurance and other expenses.

The Express Register FAMILY REGISTRATION link can be found on our website, and you can pay with paypal or by cash/check. Once you have completed that and submitted payment, you will Complete your family profile (first time setting up Jumbula only) so that you can register for classes.

You can send checks to: LOL Families Inc. 5617 97th Way North, St. Petersburg, FL 33708

It is important to register your entire family with LOL Families. Younger siblings who are not taking classes still need to be registered for insurance purposes even if they are under a year old. So please list all children when registering for classes.

Classes are paid for separately at prices set by the teacher directly to the teacher in the method they have specified.  Failure to pay a teacher for a class may affect your ability to register for future semesters with LOL Families.

Classes

Each week you have the option to choose which classes and how many you would like to take. Some students choose to take no classes at all and just participate for socialization. Others fill up their schedules. How many classes you take is entirely up to you.

In person classes: We currently meet at Eagle Lake Park on Thursdays from 9:30-3:00 for in person classes as well as offering virtual classes throughout the week. (Note: This is not a drop off program so you do need to be on property with your child at all times.)

 

Online classes: Online classes are offered by many of our instructors on the days we do not meet in person. These are typically hosted on Zoom or Discord. Your teacher will communicate the information to you prior to classes starting about how to log in and prepare for those classes. 

Class Communication: Many teachers will email or choose to have you join a Facebook group or discord server for their class. Once enrolled, class information is relayed directly from the teacher.  LOL Families admin will notify if there are to be any widespread cancellations or closures due to weather, illness, etc.  This will be done via Facebook with emergent messages via a text alert system.  You can opt into the text alert system at family pre-registration.

Our main Facebook page is used for general communication, and we maintain a separate closed semester group for registered parents and children currently participating in that semester.

Parental and Student Agreement

LOL Families believes that all members’ contributions and participation are essential for our community to function effectively. Member participation in understanding the various aspects of the operation of LOL Families ensures that the policies and management of LOL Families reflect the needs and desires of our community. We ask that our members agree to the terms of the following commitment:

  1. Pay a $25 registration fee.
  2. Pay any fees associated with classes that are attended by children and/or parents before the FIRST DAY OF CLASS. Teacher payments must be received promptly.  If doing half payments, Payment #1 due week 1, Payment #2 due week 6. Children may not attend classes that have not been paid for.
  3. Parents must be present on property or arrange for their children to be under the care of a trusted adult. If for any reason you cannot come to LOL Families with your children, you can make arrangements with another parent to take responsibility for your children. You will need to let Admin know who you are turning responsibility over to. Admin contact information is available on our website and pinned to the Facebook Page. All children present, whether participating in classes or not, must be under the supervision of their parent or a trusted adult.
  4. Maintain the cleanliness of the park facilities. Pavilions should be clean and free of debris. Dispose of all trash. 
  5. Review and abide by the LOL Families Member Code of Conduct. Review and discuss the Code of Conduct with children.
  6. Review and abide by LOL Families Health and Safety Manual.
  1. Teachers: We ask that all teachers, along with the assistance of parents, help in maintaining the cleanliness of class space. Please let Admin know if there is any specific issue to address or you need assistance in leaving the pavilions as we found them. The park has asked that we not have classes make slime or do any projects using dye without using table and floor coverings.  You can also do messier projects outside of the pavilions on the grass.
  2. Teachers: We ask that all teachers and parents maintain professional confidentiality with regard to any information about specific child’s development, family situations, and the like.

LOL Families Member Code of Conduct

Attending a homeschooling cooperative is a privilege in which we are all happy to share. LOL Families want to create an environment that embraces these character traits: respect, responsibility, safety and attentiveness. Families are actively involved and responsible for their own learning. Families must show respect to themselves and to others as well as our rented space, which we are very lucky to use.  Respect the park and the trees, structures, and facilities within it.  Do not make a mess in the pavilions and bathrooms, and if you see a mess, let an admin know immediately.  Watch your babies, and everyone else’s babies. Stop any unsafe behavior you see gently.  Do not swim in the lakes. The park allows us some freedoms we didn’t have in a building. 

You can skateboard, bike and scooter as much as you want!  You do not have to leave the park as soon as coop is over!  You can bring your pets as long as they are leashed and well behaved. You can eat wherever you like. You can chew gum (just don’t stick it to the picnic tables!). You can climb trees as long as you don’t hurt them. You can RUN!  You don’t have to wear shoes if you don’t want to!  (Note: No Nerf allowed in Pinellas County Parks.)

All that said, the wild freedom in the park can sometimes make it difficult to hear or to focus during the classes in the pavilions. Please be respectful of the classes going on and keep talking to a minimum near the pavilions.  Socialization in pavilions during class time is not allowed.  Please step away from the pavilions to chat. The pavilion space is for class attendees only. Since our rented pavilions are for classes, we find bringing a blanket or chair a good way to have a home base while you attend.

Parents are responsible for supervising their children at all times, or maintaining frequent check-ins and knowing where they are at all times.  We understand with multiple children this is a challenge and so we ask that as a group, we share responsibility for ensuring the safety of our kids.  If you see anyone engaging in destructive or dangerous behaviors, please stop them, and find a parent or administrator if more intervention is needed.

While in attendance at LOL or LOL sponsored events, all members should behave with honesty and Integrity and show respect to other students, teachers, parents and admin staff. We will maintain a non-hostile space, free of sexual harassment. A hostile environment is one in which unwelcome conduct of a sexual nature creates an uncomfortable environment for any student or parent. Examples of this conduct include sexually explicit talk, sexually provocative photographs, hostile language or inappropriate touching. We have children of all ages in attendance in a public space and inappropriate materials or conversation will not be tolerated at LOL or LOL sponsored events.

Below are basic conditions we will all share while at LOL Families:

  1. It is unacceptable to use inappropriate or hurtful language.
  2. It is unacceptable to hit or kick or give unwanted touching.
  3. We will be respectful of the indoor and outdoor facilities.
  4. We will be respectful of the other humans in our cooperative, parents are encouraged to gently help their children solve conflicts without yelling, shaming or punishing.
  5. Please clean up after yourselves and take all belongings upon leaving.
  6. Pets are allowed if leashed and well behaved.
  7. Please be sure to pick up any trash on the playground that has been left behind. Encourage the kids to do the same.
  8. Please escort children under 6 back and forth to classes.
  9. Classes are not to be disrupted by children or anyone not in class.
  10. Please be aware and help your children be aware that there are all ages of humans in our coop, small ones and big ones, and we want everyone to be safe and have the ability to have fun.  Let your older ones be aware of small ones in the field, and keep small ones away from active games of tag or kickball.
  11.  All pavilions should be left as found at the start of the day after every class.  We want to leave the pavilion space, bathrooms and playground as we found it, maybe even a little cleaner.

As a member of LOL Families, we ask that all families (adults and children) conduct themselves in a kind and helpful manner toward all individuals. If any rude, vulgar, aggressive or violent behavior is reported to the LOL Families Administrative team it will be documented and discussed with the Administrative team as a whole. Witnesses will be contacted for written statements, Details of the event will not be discussed outside of the Administrative team. If the violation involves any threatening physical contact or threatening behavior the offender will be suspended from attending LOL families classes and events until the Administrative team has had an opportunity to meet and review the details of the incident. These types of behaviors will not be tolerated and could be cause for immediate dismissal. Registration and class fees will not be refunded.  

Discipline Procedures for LOL Teachers/Families/Children  

  1. If a teacher or parent has seen something inappropriate, he/she will discuss the matter with the student and/or parent.
  2. If the behavior is disrupting class, the teacher may ask the student to leave.
  3. If a student’s behavior does not improve, the teacher may ask the parent to remove the student from the class. Class fee will not be refunded. In these extreme circumstances, the family will still be considered part of LOL Families and the child may stay in their other classes at the discretion of the LOL Families Administrative Team.

LOL strives to provide instructors of the highest moral character. Accordingly, should you or your student believe that LOL’s assigned instructor has behaved inappropriately, including in any manner that would be offensive to the student on the basis of sex, race, national origin, age, religion, sexual orientation, or disability, please report such conduct immediately to a member of the Admin Team. Please be assured that all complaints will be promptly investigated, and, if such a complaint is founded, LOL will take immediate remedial action reasonably calculated to end the inappropriate conduct, up to and including termination by LOL of its contract with such instructor. All complaints will be investigated with as much confidentiality as possible.

LOL strictly prohibits its instructors from engaging in any inappropriate conduct with his/her assigned student, including any conduct which in any manner would be offensive to the student on the basis of sex, race, national origin, age, religion, sexual orientation, or disability. All complaints made by any student or parent of inappropriate behavior will be promptly investigated. If the investigation reaches a conclusion that inappropriate behavior by the instructor occurred, LOL will take reasonable and immediate remedial action, up to and including termination of instructor’s contract with LOL.  LOL prohibits any of its contracted instructors from any retaliatory conduct against any student or parent bringing a complaint of inappropriate conduct.

Privacy Notice

This privacy notice discloses the privacy practices for www.lolfamilies.com. This privacy notice applies solely to information collected by this website. It will notify you of the following:

  1. What personally identifiable information is collected from you through the website, how it is used and with whom it may be shared.
  2. What choices are available to you regarding the use of your data.
  3. The security procedures in place to protect the misuse of your information.
  4. How you can correct any inaccuracies in the information.

Information Collection, Use, and Sharing 

We are the sole owners of the information collected on this site. We only have access to/collect information that you voluntarily give us via email or other direct contact from you. We will not sell or rent this information to anyone.

We will use your information to respond to you, regarding the reason you contacted us. We will not share your information with any third party outside of our organization, other than as necessary to fulfill your request, e.g. to ship an order.

Unless you ask us not to, we may contact you via email in the future to tell you about specials, new products or services, or changes to this privacy policy.

Your Access to and Control Over Information 

You may opt out of any future contacts from us at any time. You can do the following at any time by contacting us via the email address or phone number given on our website:

  • See what data we have about you, if any.
  • Change/correct any data we have about you.
  • Have us delete any data we have about you.
  • Express any concern you have about our use of your data.

Security 

We take precautions to protect your information. When you submit sensitive information via the website, your information is protected both online and offline.

Wherever we collect sensitive information (such as credit card data), that information is encrypted and transmitted to us in a secure way. You can verify this by looking for a lock icon in the address bar and looking for “https” at the beginning of the address of the Web page.

While we use encryption to protect sensitive information transmitted online, we also protect your information offline. Only employees who need the information to perform a specific job (for example, billing or customer service) are granted access to personally identifiable information. The computers/servers in which we store personally identifiable information are kept in a secure environment.

Registration 

In order to use this website, a user must first complete the registration form. During registration a user is required to give certain information (such as name and email address). This information is used to contact you about the products/services on our site in which you have expressed interest. At your option, you may also provide demographic information (such as gender or age) about yourself, but it is not required.

Family Directory 

We maintain a family directory that is voluntary and you may opt out anytime.  

Image Release

I understand that the use of photographs/video taken during the course of the LOL semester and special events may be used for publicity, promotional and/or educational purposes.

If you feel that we are not abiding by this privacy policy, you should contact us immediately via email at [email protected]

LOL Families Health and Safety Manual

In the pages below are guidelines for health, safety, and security at LOL Families. Please note that communication and common sense judgment are of utmost importance. Incidents may happen and sometimes, can be prevented. The goal of the Health and Safety Manual is to maintain and promote the health and safety of our children, parents, and teachers at the Cooperative.

Health and Safety are the joint efforts of the teachers, parents and caregivers. Everyone’s cooperation is needed to guarantee that we are as healthy and as safe as possible. Problems and potential problems need to be addressed in a timely manner to maximize safety and prevent accidents and incidents.

LOL Families encourages communication. If you have an idea to improve safety, please contact members of the Administrative team or the Parent Liaison. We want everyone – students, teachers and families to be safe and healthy at the Cooperative.

Fire / Emergency

In the event of a fire or unknown situation or emergency, dial 911.

Lightning/Severe Weather Plan

We must postpone outdoor activities if thunderstorms occur. If we can hear thunder, then we are close enough to be in danger from lightning. We can take shelter in cars or under the pavilions while waiting for a storm to pass. However, in cases of severe weather we may alert that co-op is cancelled.  Safety first.

Tornado Watch/Warning Procedure

A tornado watch means that weather conditions are favorable for a tornado to form. A tornado warning means that a tornado has been spotted in the area and cover must be taken immediately. In the event of a tornado warning, adults and children should take cover in their cars. 

Visitors

Visitors are allowed in the park, as we are operating out of a public park. However, visitors can only attend classes in rented pavilions when accompanied by a parent or caregiver of an LOL Families student. 

Child Abuse

As required under Section 39.201 Florida Statutes, the first obligation of any adult in Florida is to immediately report any incidence of known or suspected sexual or other abuse to the Department of Children and Families’ central abuse hotline on the single statewide toll-free telephone number 1-800-962-2873.

We require all teachers over the age of 18 to complete a NCSI (Level 1) Background Check as well as an online abuse prevention training.

Building and Equipment Maintenance and Safety

Any safety threat or concerns to children, families, or teachers must be reported to a member of the Administrative team so that LOL Families can assess and assist in solving the safety concern. Any broken or unsafe equipment or furniture must be reported to a member of the administrative team so it can be repaired or replaced.

Hazardous Materials: All Hazardous Materials must be placed out of reach of children at all times. Art or science classes must ensure that their activities are only using materials that are safe for children. No slime allowed in pavilions.

Medical Emergencies

If a child or adult experiences symptoms that signify an emergency call 911

911 will be called if a child or adult: Is not breathing, is unconscious, is unable to walk, is having seizures, is bleeding heavily, has a head injury, has a serious allergic reaction.

Only adults trained in First Aid and CPR should supervise all first aid procedures.

Allergies

Parents or guardians of children with severe or life threatening allergies must inform LOL Families. This includes children with asthma. LOL Families is not responsible for families that bring in nuts or seeds.

Health Care Policy

A communicable disease is an illness transmitted through contact with microorganisms. People, surfaces, and air can all be carriers of the microorganisms that pass infectious illnesses from one host to the next. The exchange of fluids or contact with a contaminated substance or individual may be enough to allow a communicable disease to spread. LOL Families follows the same guidelines and the Pinellas County School System The communicable diseases that could potentially cause great difficulty for our families with infants, immune disorders or other conditions are listed below.

A Quick Reference Guide for Parents

  • Please keep your child home from LOL if he or she has one of the conditions or illnesses listed below. 
  • Most of the conditions and illnesses are reportable to the Health Department during outbreaks only. Illnesses noted (*) are reportable for single cases 

Conjunctivitis (Pink-eye) Children who have pink or red eyes with white or yellow discharge- often with matted eyelids after sleep and eye pain or redness of the eyelids or skin surrounding the eye may have Conjunctivitis. They should be excluded from LOL while symptomatic.Children with pink eyes who have a clear, watery discharge without fever, eye pain, or eyelid redness do not need to be kept home.

Fifth Disease (Erythema infectiosum) The primary symptom of this illness is a rash, characterized by “slapped face” appearance and there is no specified exclusion for cases. Pregnant women and immune-compromised persons should seek medical advice. 

Head Lice Children should be excluded from LOL if they are experiencing head scratching and live lice or nits are present. 

Hepatitis A* Children should be excluded until one week after the onset of jaundice or illness.

Influenza-Like-Illness Children with fever, cough and/or sore throat should be excluded until symptoms resolved.

Measles* Children with fever, reddened eyes, runny nose, cough, dusky-red blotchy rash on day 3 or 4, should be excluded until 4 days after onset of rash. 

Meningitis* Bacterial/Viral – Children experiencing high fever, headache, and stiff neck should be excluded until recovered. ‘Bacterial Meningitis is immediately reportable to Health Department 

Mononucleosis Exclusion recommended until a medical note to return to school and/or resume physical activities is required.

Mumps* Initially excluded. Children may return 5 days after the onset of parotid gland swelling. 

Pertussis* Children should be excluded until 5 days of appropriate antibiotic therapy, with a note from the healthcare provider. 

Rubella (German Measles)* Initially excluded. Child should remain at home until 6 days after onset of rash, with a note from the healthcare provider. 

Scabies Children with this condition should remain out of school until 24 hours after application of appropriate scabicidal treatment has been completed. 

Staphylococcal or streptococcal skin infections, (includes MRSA) Exclude children from LOL whose lesions cannot be covered. If lesion can be covered exclude from contact sports only.

Impetigo- May return 24 hours after treatment started, but areas/sores must remain covered. 

Streptococcal pharyngitis (strep throat) Children can return to LOL 24 hours after starting antibiotic treatment if there is no fever. 

Tinea Capitis (Ringworm of the scalp) Children must be excluded from LOLuntil an oral antifungal treatment is initiated. 

Tinea Corporis (Ringworm of the body) Children should be excluded from LOL until an oral or topical antifungal treatment is initiated, unless the affected area can be completely covered. 

Tuberculosis* Children with this condition must be excluded from LOL until the local health department and treating physician state that the student is noninfectious. Varicella (Chickenpox)* Children should be excluded from LOL until all lesions have dried and crusted (usually 7 days/1 week after the onset of the rash).

Varicella Herpes Zoster (Shingles) Keep children home who have lesions/sores/blisters that cannot be covered. Child may return to school once all lesions are dried/crusted. 

Exclusion

LOL Exclusion List indicates for which illnesses a child must be excluded from, or kept out of, LOL. It also indicates when medical notes are necessary for children to return to school after certain illnesses. Exclusion criteria based upon the following signs and symptoms:

Fever Exclude if oral temp is 100 or above, or if axillary/tympanic temp is greater than 99.5. 

Vomiting Exclude if vomiting 2 or more times in 24-hour period. Exclude for the following day unless vomiting is known to be caused by a condition that is not contagious 

Diarrhea Exclude if two or more loose stools in 24-hour period. Return to school when 24 hours pass without diarrheal stool. 

Diarrhea with blood or mucous Exclude with 1 or more loose stools with blood or mucous. 

Localized skin infection Exclude from contact sports. Exclude from LOL only if lesion cannot be covered until medical clearance is given. 

Generalized rash of unknown origin Exclude until rash is resolved or medical clearance is given. 

A child or family member should not attend until at least 24 hours after they are clear of nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, or fever WITHOUT medication.

**If LOL Admin sees anyone attending with any of these symptoms you will be asked to leave.**

Announcing Communicable Disease – If you have a communicable disease that has been confirmed by a doctor and you would like us to share that information with LOL Families we will forward the information via e-mail or Facebook to registered families. We will never release your name without your consent and will not release the name of any teachers or families who report illness to you, so please do not ask us to do so. If you have put two and two together we ask that you respect the privacy of the families involved and keep that to yourself.

Please continue to use your best judgement about illnesses in general- The best way to avoid spreading illness among our community is to practice due diligence by washing your hands with soap and water and sneezing or coughing into your sleeve. Hand sanitizer is also a great alternative during our park time.
Please feel free to give a heads up yourself via Facebook to LOL Families if your family is out with the flu or out with one of the communicable diseases listed above as a friendly heads up. We offer the option above for those families who want to remain anonymous.

Exceptions – we will make exceptions to the rule if we feel that it is in the best interest of LOL Families. 

Make up days – If for any reason we have to cancel classes due to a large number of teachers or families being out sick, we will attempt to use a make up day. However, it will not always be possible and will be up to each individual teacher to resolve this with the parents in a way that works best for their class. Please understand that these circumstances are out of our control.

LOVE OF LEARNING FAMILIES, INC 

a 501c3 organization