Welcome to the YMCA family. We’re glad you’re here!

Learn more about your participation in the Before and After School Care programs.


Welcome to the YMCA family. We’re glad you’re here!

Learn more about your membership.


At the YMCA of Greater Houston, strengthening community is our cause. We know that a strong community can only be achieved when we invest in our youth, our health and our neighbors.

The YMCA Before School and After School program is a values driven program that puts a strong emphasis on our core values of caring, honesty, respect, responsibility and faith in hopes of empowering youth.

The key to our success is always our well-trained and caring staff who are passionate about working with youth. Strong communication between the staff and parent/guardian is essential to ensure that every child is successful in our program.

Please take a few moments to read through the handbook with your child. It will help to familiarize you and your child with our policies and procedures and explains everything from our program model, policies and procedures to safety, activities and communication. If you have a question that is not covered in this handbook, please contact us at and a member of our team will assist you.

We look forward to helping your child grow into their full potential as they build relationships, discover a sense of belonging and gain achievement, at the YMCA of Greater Houston.


Avice Chambers
Senior Vice President of Youth Development
YMCA of Greater Houston

child reading a book at a desk


At the Y, out of school time programs are more than a place to go, they provide a path with a purpose. The YMCA provides safe, quality and affordable programs at over 185 sites across Houston in over 20 school districts and charter schools. The Y offers more than just programs, each is a step along a journey to being a competent, confident, connected, compassionate adult with high character that contributes to their community.



The Y offers youth a path with a purpose. From early childhood to their teen years and beyond. Our programs are designed to better prepare youth for their future with skills, confidence and social awareness that is needed to thrive on their path into adulthood. The Y offers more than “just programs”. Each is a step along a journey to being a competent, confident, connected, compassionate adult with high character that contributes to their community. Our youth development programs include:

Before School and After School

The Y makes the most of your child’s Before School and After School time by offering active learning opportunities designed to engage and expand young minds. Housed in local schools1, YMCA Before School and After School program gives your child the opportunity to participate in active play and collaborate on fun projects with their peers and adult role models. We offer a variety of structured activities that promote positive social interactions, indoor and outdoor play and reinforce academic learning concepts, as well as lessons in empathy, inclusion and service learning. Programs typically follow the same schedule as the school district, operating Monday – Friday 6:30 am until the first bell for before school programs and school dismissal until 6/6:30 pm for after school programs. We adhere to Texas Human and Health Services (HHS) – childcare licensing minimum standards.

We also offer youth development programs under the Outreach umbrella.


YMCA Outreach programs offer enrichment activities and services to apartment complexes, schools and neighborhoods helping to develop youth and allowing children to thrive and feel a sense of belonging. Outreach Programs include After School Programs with Enrichment Activities, Social Service, Core Programs and Summer Programs. Though not required, we adhere to Texas Human and Health Services (HHS) – childcare licensing minimum standards.


Housed in local schools and a few local YMCAs, our Before and After School programs give youth the opportunity to engage in active play and collaborate on fun projects. It supports academic achievement, fosters health and wellness, instills positive social emotional learning and creates opportunities for youth and families to belong and connect.

YMCA youth programs are designed to be an extension of the school day so we utilize a curriculum that focuses on Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills defined by Texas Education Agency. This includes leadership development, service learning, college and career exploration, arts education, global learning, 21st century skills, parent and caregiver engagement, academics, health and wellness and interactive learning centers. Youth and parents/guardians participate in satisfaction and outcome surveys to measure the impact of the program design and to provide feedback. Parents/guardians can schedule a meeting with the program director to learn about their youth’s developmental progress.


  • Y COMMUNITY TIME – Welcome children into the program; this can consist of a formal greeting, icebreakers, or group games, along with a healthy snack.
  • BRAIN POWER HOUR – Dedicated time for students to word on daily homework and participate in self-guided academic learning centers.
  • EXPLORATION – Age-appropriate structured, hands-on, fun activities intended to reinforce academic learning concepts. Activities will be focused on STEM and literacy.
  • ENRICHMENT – Activities such as music, art, theatre, DIY crafts, global awareness, service learning and character education intended to expose students to new experiences, igniting their imagination.
  • ENERGIZE – Physical play activities that can take place either outside or in the gym/cafeteria or playground2, incorporating CATCH Kids Club curriculum.


The YMCA recognizes that academic success is important for children who are enrolled in our after school program. YMCA staff members support the parents of program participants by encouraging students to take responsibility for completing their homework. Our schedule will include thirty minutes of designated homework time. During this time staff members will monitor and work with the students upon request, but will not provide one-on-one tutoring. Students are allowed to spend additional time doing homework during scheduled activities, at parent / guardian request. Electronic devices are allowed for educational purposes only during homework help. Parents / guardians must sign YMCA’s electronic usage permission form, prior to students being allowed to use technology devices within the program.

Homework guidance from the Y staff will include:

  • An explanation of the directions
  • Reading instructions and giving examples (this does not include grading or corrections to work as to defer to the school’s teaching methods)

Please note, Y staff are not responsible for checking the children’s belongings for homework or assignments. We also encourage students and parents to review and complete homework together.

Students may require additional academic support from school personnel during program hours. Students can be release to school personnel if parent / guardian completes “Parent Permission for Child to be Released to School Personnel/Partnership Agency during After School hours” form.


An afternoon snack is provided each day, which includes a ½ cup of fruit and/or vegetable and whole grains. Water is the primary beverage for our program. When juice is served, it will be 100% fruit juice and will be limited to one 8 oz. serving per day. When milk is served, the milk will be low fat (1%) or nonfat milk. All snacks comply with the USDA program guidelines and are served in a family style environment to enhance self-help skills and social skills. Monthly snack menus are posted on the parent board or at the parent table for review.

If you choose to send an additional snack with your child, please ensure these these foods do not include any form of peanut products, fried foods or foods that are high in sugar and saturated fats (such as chips, cookies, candy, etc.). Please refrain from bringing sugar-sweetened beverages and food from local restaurants into the program. Please also utilize these guidelines for snacks for parties and events. Ideas for healthy snacks can be provided upon request.

YMCA of Greater Houston partners with The Houston Food Bank’s Kids Cafe to provide free meals and snacks to children in low-income areas. The objective of Kids Cafe is to help alleviate childhood hunger by providing children with access to fresh, healthy and warm meals in after-school or child care programs.

USDA Statement


YMCA Before and After School programs do not routinely have water activities as a part of the program.


In the instance where your child may have interaction with small animals (i.e. millipede, caterpillar) as a part of the YMCA Afterschool curriculum, parents will be notified in writing. Students will be required to practice good hygiene and hand washing after handling or coming in to contact with an animal and items used by the animal, such as water bowls, food bowls and cages.


School age programs operate from 6:30 a.m. until first school bell and/or school dismissal until 6 or 6:30 p.m., Monday through Friday. The program begins in August or September and ends in May or June. The program follows the school’s calendar and adjusts for holidays and early release days based on that calendar.


All enrollment is completed electronically at Registration fees must be paid at the time of enrollment. Please allow time to complete your registration in one sitting, as it will time out after 30 minutes.

The following items are needed to enroll:

• Name, address, and phone number

• Your child’s shot record

• Your child’s school ID or lunch ID

• Emergency contact information included address for someone other than yourself (not parent or guardian)

• Contact information for others authorized to pick up including Driver’s License or government issued ID

• Payment information

• Registration fee

• Insurance information

• Doctor and Hospital information

• Complete Child Care Licensing FARE form (Food Allergy and Anaphylaxis Emergency Care Plan) if applicable to the child

• Medication Authorization form (if medication is needed during the time of care)

To begin the process, you must have a YMCA membership to create an online account. You can become a member by visiting our website at and selecting the program of interest. For more information on membership benefits, please visit

Once you have become a member, you can then create an online account to register for the program. Please be aware that it may take up to 24 hours for paperwork to be processed. All paperwork must be processed before your child can begin the program.

Any changes to policies will be communicated to participants’ parents or guardians in writing.

Our program is designed to be inclusive of all children, including those with disabilities, special learning, and developmental needs. If your child requires special accommodations or health care, please notify the director so we can collaborate on your child’s care. Prior to attending the program, a meeting must be arranged with the Program Director. Please contact the director to schedule this meeting.

Child day care operations are considered public accommodations under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), Title III. To understand your rights and the ADA guidelines for child care centers, visit If you suspect discrimination in violation of Title III, you can contact the ADA Information Line at (800) 514-0301 (voice) or (800) 514-0383 (TTY). Additionally, we offer bilingual (English/Spanish) staff to assist with communication needs, and therapy sessions can be conducted in a designated classroom upon request.


Youth should proceed directly to the program area following school dismissal and check- in with Y counselors. The Y’s responsibility for your child begins when:

  • Your child is brought into the YMCA before school program space and checked in by the parent/guardian.
  • Your child enters the YMCA after school program space, located in a participating school, and they are checked in by Y staff.
  • Your child boards a YMCA vehicle to be transferred to the program site.


Parents/guardians must enter the building and sign their youth in and out of our program. This assures youth safety and compliance with state child care licensing.






A photo ID may be required for the release of youth. The youth will only be released to his/her parent/guardian and/or those adults whom the parent(s)/guardian specifically designate on the registration form. Only those designated on the registration form will be allowed to modify information and all changes must be made with the Program Director via email or by completing a Registration Authorized Pick-up Change Request Form with the Site Lead. Please allow up to 48 from the day the Program Director received the request for the changes to be reflected on your account.*

If a parent/guardian is not allowed to pick up a youth, the YMCA must have a copy of the court order signed by a judge. Without this documentation, we are obligated to release youth to either parent/guardian, if both are listed on the registration paperwork. The Y will only follow what the court order states. In the unfortunate event of a difficult/dangerous custody situation where a court order is in place, please contact the Senior Youth Development Director to set up guidelines regarding the release of your child. You must have a copy of any court documents regarding the restriction of release of youth in our care. Parents are responsible for resolving any issues that may arise from their child’s participation in our programs. The YMCA will not get involved in disputes between parents.

The following protocols will be in place at all times during check out:

  1. Parent / Guardian / Authorized pick-up individual will show photo ID to YMCA staff member and wait at welcome station.
  2. Once ID is verified, Parent / Guardian / Authorized pick-up individual will sign out youth.
  3. YMCA staff member will bring the child from the program area to release to Parent / Guardian / Authorized pick-up individual.

We use an electronic sign-in/out system operated by Alaris. The system is designed for use on mobile devise and tablets. The goal is to provide families an engaging and modernized experience. YMCA staff verify all authorized adults and record a digital signature before releasing.

Youth are allowed to walk / bike home if parent / guardian signs “Parent Permission for Child to Walk Home” / “Permission for Child to Ride a Bike Home” form. YMCA best practice is to release youth to their parent or other designated adult, and does not support youth going home on their own. Therefore, this option is only used if other options to safely transport child home have failed. The YMCA, nor any of its paid or volunteer staff can be held in anyway responsible for youth after form is signed and child leaves the after school program.

*Parent / Guardian / Authorized pick-up individual must be list on youth registration form and hold a matching photo ID for youth to be released from program. Youth may be released to sibling under the age of 18 if the “Parent Permission for Child to be Released to a Sibling Under Age 18” form is complete by an account holder.


If your child is attending a Y program that requires transportation, we ask that you speak with your child regarding proper safety guidelines. All children must stay seated with their seat belts fastened while the vehicle is moving and until the vehicle is completely parked.

Our primary goal when transporting children is to ensure their safety. The Y reserves the right to suspend or dismiss a student if a child is behaving in a way that is unsafe or inappropriate. If your child misses the bus to their Y program, staff will NOT be able to go back to the school to pick up your child.

Bus Rules And Regulations

When transportation is required to commute children to a before / after school program, youth are expected to observe all usual program safety and bussing rules below:

  • Comply with seating assignments made by the driver and / or YMCA staff member.
  • Follow the driver’s directions at all times.
  • Enter and leave the bus in an orderly manner at the designated stop.
  • Keep feet, arms and personal belongings out of the aisle.
  • Do not deface the bus or its equipment.
  • Do not put head, hands, arms, or legs out of the window, hold any object out of the window, or throw objects within or out of the bus.
  • Stay seated while the bus is moving.
  • Fasten their seat belts when riding a bus that is equipped with seatbelts.
  • Wait for the driver’s and / or YMCA staff members signal upon leaving the bus and before crossing in front of the bus.
  • Follow any other rules established by the bus operator.

Misconduct will be addressed in accordance with the Discipline and Guidance Procedures outlined in the Parent Handbook; the privilege to ride in a YMCA/district vehicle, including a school bus, may be suspended or revoked. Restitution or immediate arrangement thereof must be made before the child’s bus riding privileges are restored.

Field Trips

YMCA Before and After School programs do not routinely have field trips as a part of the program. Should your child’s site have a field trip we will follow field trip procedures as outlined in Child Care Licensing Minimum Standards. You will be notified of the field trip a minimum of 48 hours in advance and you will be asked to sign a permission slip for the trip.


Notify the Program Director via email and Site Lead via program mobile device if youth will not attend program that day. Include your first and last name, the youth’s first and last name and the program location when reporting the absence.


In order to participate in the program, children are required to have been examined within the past year by a licensed physician. Children must be mentally and emotionally able to participate in the program activities. Immunization records, a TB test, hearing and vision screenings must be current and on file at your child’s school.


The YMCA of Greater Houston does not require child care staff to receive any additional immunizations in order to work with children. In order to ensure the health and safety of all, employees who work directly with children will follow required procedures to prevent the spread of exposure to disease:

  • Wear gloves when handling or cleaning body fluids, such as after wiping noses, mouths, or tending sores.
  • Specify that an employee with open wounds and/or any injury that inhibits hand washing, such as casts, bandages, or braces, must not prepare food or have close contact with children in care.
  • Remove gloves and wash hands immediately after each task to prevent cross-contamination to other children.
  • Exclude the employee from direct care when the employee has signs of illness.

In order to protect the health of all children in our care, please keep your child at home if you notice that he/she begins to show signs of an illness or contagious disease or if he/she feels too ill to participate in a group care setting.

Please let us know as soon as possible if your child has a communicable illness or infection. This will allow us to notify the parents of children attending our program. Children with communicable conditions may not return to care without a note from their physician. Weather permitting, children go outside every day. We cannot keep one child inside due to illness.

Children with head lice will not be allowed to attend the after school program. In relation to head lice, the Y will follow the same guidelines as your child’s school.

If your child becomes ill during the program, we will contact you to pick him/her up. In case of injury, parents will be notified immediately.

General Health Practices

  • Participants with colds or illness will not be admitted. Please do not put us in the position of refusing your child.
  • Participants with head lice will not be allowed to attend the program. Our programs follows the same guidelines as the public school system.
  • All participants are required by the Texas Health and Human Services to have current immunization record information on file. Children ages and under are required to have a physical examination from a doctor on file. Please let us know immediately if your child has a communicable illness or infection. This will allow us to notify the parents of children attending our program. Participants with communicable conditions may not return to the program without a note from their physician.
  • Staff will not be permitted to transport any participants.
  • Anyone working with children is required by law to report any suspected child abuse. This includes physical, sexual, emotional, mental abuse and neglect.
  • Staff are not permitted to babysit or participate in non-Y organized activities with participants in the program.

ILL Participants

If a participant develops symptoms of a fever of 100.4 while in the program, the following will take place:

  • Participants will be separated immediately from the group.
  • Parent will be called to be pick up participant immediately.
  • Cleaning guidelines will be followed immediately in the area the participants was.
  • Parents will be notified via email regarding Covid19 exposures.


Regular and ongoing medication will not be administered on-site. Arrangements should be made with the school nurse for program participants to receive medicine. For emergency medication such as an Epi-pen, please complete a “Food Allergy & Anaphylaxis Emergency Care Plan (FARE)” and “Authorization to Administer Medication” forms, which can be provided by the site staff. These forms require the listing of the specific dosage your child is to be given and must accompany all medications. Medications must also be in the original container with your youth’s name and all labels intact. If over-the-counter medication must be administered, it must also be accompanied by signed “Authorization to Administer Medication” form, in its the original container, labeled with your child’s name, with all labels intact and have a signed doctor’s order outlining when the medication should be administered and in what dosage.



Families seeking assistance with medication expenses are encouraged to visit the resources below and/or speak with their local healthcare provider:


In the case of a medical emergency, we will call 911 and contact the youth’s parent(s)/guardian(s). Responding emergency medical personnel will make any determinations as to if the child should be transported to a hospital. We will provide them with the information from your youth’s records as to your choice of hospital and physician. In the event that this information is not specified, the child will be transported to the nearest available hospital.

In the event of a head injury, parent/guardian will be notified immediately. The student will be monitored for symptoms consistent with a concussion following the injury until parent/guardian arrives.


We believe in fostering a safe, respectful, and inclusive environment where youth can thrive. To uphold our core values of respect, caring, honesty, responsibility and faith, we have established the following code of conduct for parents/guardians and visitors:

Guiding Principles:

• We all share the goal of providing a safe environment for youth.

• To ensure the best possible experience, collaboration between parents/guardians and YMCA staff is essential for the well-being of all youth.

• All individuals, be they parents, guardians, visitors or staff, deserve to be treated with dignity, respect and kindness.

• To promote a constructive outcome, questions, concerns, and disputes must be addressed with the center executive or program department leads.

• YMCA staff will acknowledge general communications within forty-eight hours (not including weekends) via email or a telephone call.

• Help youth learn and practice good behavior and maintain a positive attitude towards themselves, others and the community.

• Adhere to this YMCA code of conduct.

Prohibited Behaviors:

To maintain a peaceful and secure environment and to protect all parties, we prohibit the following behaviors:

• Intimidating, harassing or discriminating against any person based on race, color, creed, national origin, religion, age, gender, sexual orientation or disability.

• Abusive, threatening, or harassing communication with youth, YMCA staff, or other parents/guardians, whether in person, via electronic communication, or on social media platforms.

• Disruptive behavior that interferes with YMCA operations, including program areas and common spaces.

• Threats of bodily harm or damage to property.

• Destruction of YMCA property.

• Excessive and/or unscheduled visits that interfere with program schedule.

• Defamatory or offensive comments about YMCA staff or the YMCA in general.

• Physical aggression towards others, including youth.

• Approaching or disciplining another person’s youth.

• Bringing or using any illegal substances and/or weapons

• Bringing or using alcohol, drugs, tobacco, electronic cigarettes or any smokeless products

• Violating traffic laws, parking regulations or other vehicular restrictions.


Depending on the incident, parents/guardians or visitors may face consequences, including:

• Removal from YMCA premises, programs or events.

• Suspension or restriction from participating in YMCA programs without refund of any program fees.

• Legal action in cases of criminal behavior or threats.

These consequences aim to ensure the safety and well-being of all individuals within our community.


All youth are entitled to a pleasant and safe environment while participating in this program. The five Y core values of respect, responsibility, honesty, caring and faith will be used in the before school and after school program.

Youth are expected youth to behave as follows:

  • Be responsible for personal belongings
  • Participate in all activities
  • Possess positive and caring attitudes
  • Follow proper safety procedures at all times, including:
    • Never opening outside doors
    • Not fighting or using foul language
    • Not running in school
    • Not playing in the restrooms
    • Not playing on or under the tables
  • Respect for fellow participants and staff
  • Stay with their group and listen to their counselor at all times

The Y cannot serve youth who display unacceptable behavior. Youth who exhibit any type of behavior which is thought to be unacceptable or unsafe by a counselor and the site lead will be warned to correct their behavior and a telephone call will be made to their parent or guardian. Unacceptable behavior can result in suspension pending an investigation. The investigation may entail getting statements from witnesses, viewing video footage and awaiting results of the investigation conducted by Texas Human and Health Services. There are no refunds for suspension or termination due to unacceptable behavior.

Unacceptable Behavior (includes but is not limited to):

  • Using foul language
  • Disrespecting another child or counselor
  • Fighting
  • Refusing to take part in activities
  • Ignoring or disobeying rules of safety
  • Running away from group or designated areas
  • Public or inappropriate displays of affection
  • Inappropriately touching a peer or counselor with or without their consent
  • Defacing property or vandalism
  • Stealing

Gang Free Zone: Under the Texas Penal Code, any area within 1,000 feet of a child care center is a gang-free zone, where criminal offenses related to organized criminal activity are subject to harsher penalties.


Self-management skills and positive social interactions among children and adults are encouraged and maximize everyone’s enjoyment of the program. Y programs use positive guidance methods including reminders, distraction, logical consequences and redirection. Self-management skills are taught according to the following guidelines:

  • Consistent rules are clearly stated. Youth are expected to work and play within known limits.
  • Behavior expected of youth is age appropriate and based on developmental level.
  • An atmosphere of trust is established in order for youth to know that they will not be hurt nor allowed to hurt others.
  • Staff members strive to help youth become acquainted with themselves and their feelings. This will help them learn to cope with their feelings and control them responsibly.

Child safety is the most important concern of the program. therefore, the Y cannot serve youth who display unacceptable or unsafe behavior. Youth who exhibit any type of behavior thought to be unacceptable or unsafe by a counselor and the site lead will be warned to correct their behavior and a telephone call will be made to their parent/guardian requesting support with addressing the behavior.


The Y has the authority to establish appropriate disciplinary consequences to ensure the safety and well-being of participants and Y staff. Unacceptable behavior may result in suspension of care pending an investigation. The investigation may entail getting statements from witnesses, viewing video footage and awaiting results of the investigation conducted by Texas Human and Health Services. Due to privacy laws, the Y is limited to what can be shared with a parent/guardian if other parties are involved in the investigation. Incident reports are made available to a parent/guardian within 48 business hours of incident being reported to Texas Human and Health Services. Other consequences may include loss of privileges or activities and termination from the program. There are no refunds for suspension or termination due to unacceptable behavior.

1st Incident: Y staff discuss positive alternative behavior with youth. The parent/guardian will be notified verbally and/or in writing. Depending on the nature of the first incident, a student may be suspended for up to three days or terminated from the program.

2nd Incident: The youth will receive a written warning and up to three-day suspension. The parent/guardian will meet with the Program Director to discuss unacceptable behavior and develop a Behavior Plan to assist youth with improving behavior before the youth return to program.

3rd Incident or Gross Violation: Suspension or termination of care. This is considered as a last resort. The action taken is at the discretion of the Youth Development Director of Operations and District Executive Director of Youth Development, after appropriate consultation with the parent. The YMCA considers behaviors such as hitting staff or other students, damaging school property or supplies, running away from the program and inappropriate touch are examples of behaviors that can lead to immediate termination of care.


Children should be dressed for active indoor and outdoor play. A change of clothes is recommended. Parents will supply their children with insect repellant and or sunscreen if necessary. YMCA Before and After School program will not purchase, provide, or apply insect repellant and sunscreen on participants. Items brought to the program by your child must be labeled and we expect children to be responsible for their personal belongings. Please leave toys, money, video games and players, iPods or other MP3 players, cell phones and anything not allowed by your child’s school district at home. The Y cannot credit or compensate for lost, damaged or stolen items.


Parent/guardian notifications may be made in writing via letters, emails, fliers and/or signage at the parent table at each site. Notifications may also be made by phone calls or directly in person by site staff. Open communication is very important to the success of your child’s Y experience. Conferences may be requested at any time by emailing the Program Director. Activity schedules, menus and other pertinent information will be available for you to view at the parent table.


We would like to learn how our program has made a positive impact on your family. You may direct suggestions, concerns, compliments and complaints to the immediate caregiver, the Program Director, the Senior Director, the Director of Operations or the District Executive Director of Youth Development to their direct email or You can also share your feedback by visiting the following link

Parents are welcome visitors to our program. Please check daily for posted notices, fliers or other information about program activities. We appreciate input regarding program expectations, suggestions, ideas and comments on ways to improve our service to you and your family.

Provider’s Guide to Parent’s Rights


Parents are welcome and encouraged to participate with their children in a variety of activities. Three to four times per year, the YMCA will host activities or events designed for your entire family. These events will include opportunities for you to be physically active and to learn more about healthy food choices and nutrition. Please read our newsletters and watch for tips on helping your family to be healthy and active. Sample engagement activities include,

  • February: Family Outing at the Y, fun for the entire family! Activities include brunch, pictures with the ones you love, door prizes, arts & crafts, games and more!
  • May: Lemonade Day, a fun, experiential program that teaches youth how to start, own and operate their very own business-a lemonade stand. Parents have the opportunity to support the entrepreneurial activity by purchasing lemonade prepared by youth. Funds raised will be used to provide scholarships to campers during the summer.
  • June: Day Camp Family Orientation, event held to welcome and acclimate new/returning families.
  • July: Family Outing at the Y. Activities include enjoying summer-themed snacks, a talent show, recreation activities and more!
  • August: After-school Family Orientation, event held to welcome and acclimate new/returning families.
  • October: Lights on Afterschool, draw attention to the many ways afterschool programs like the YMCA support youth by offering them opportunities to learn new things.

In order to volunteer in a Y Before and After School Care Program, volunteers must have a clear criminal background and FBI check. Volunteers will also need to complete a volunteer application and take the Y online child abuse and prevention training course. Parents and volunteers are never left alone with a group of children.

The YMCA of Greater Houston has balanced billing. Monthly fees are based on your individual school district calendar year. A school calendar with three or more weeks in August results in a prorated fee. Two weeks or less in August results in zero fee. If school is in session the month of June, the fee is prorated. All early dismissal days and in-service days are included in the monthly fee. Holiday camps and school holidays may require an additional fee.

Payments are due before the first of each month. The balance is based on the schedule selected and is charged regardless of attendance. To ensure a spot and to avoid late fees it is recommended that you schedule payments with an auto-draft. Your payment will be drafted from your account on the 1st of each month. Check with your YMCA for additional drafting options such as weekly and daily drop-in rates. Drafting is available through a credit card or EFT. Payment may also be made in-person at the Y before the first of each month. Cash, check, credit card, money order or cashier’s checks are accepted as forms of payment. No payments will be collected at the school site. Late payment will result in termination of care until balance is resolved; spots are not guaranteed once care is suspended.

In the event of program cancellations due to inclement weather or facility issues that prohibit children from attending school, the YMCA recognizes three days of care as a full week of service. Based on this balanced billing, accounts will be credited for a maximum of 3 days in any full week of cancellations.

When withdrawing from the program or placing your draft for the afterschool program on hold, written notice must be submitted to the YMCA, and provided at least two weeks prior to your draft date. No refunds will be issued to anyone withdrawing after the first day of the month. All membership fees are non-refundable; this includes registration fees.

Late Payments

Payments are considered late after the 3rd of each month and your account will be charged a $30 late fee. If payment has not been received by the 10th of the month your child will no longer be accepted into the Y program and will be withdrawn from registration.

Late Pick-Up

Please call the after school site lead if an unexpected emergency will cause you to be late picking up your child. There is a $1 per minute charge for children not picked up by the program’s closing time. In the event that a child has not been picked up within one hour of the stated closing time, Y staff members will call Children’s Protective Services. In the event that a child is repeatedly left past the closing hour, the Y reserves the right to terminate the child’s enrollment in the program.

Receipt Request

When making payment, you are able to print copy of receipt through your online account. Retain all receipts and canceled checks for your records. The Y Tax ID number is 74-1109737.

Financial Assistance

The Y is a community-based organization and believes that its programs and services should be available to everyone regardless of age, background, ability or income. The Y offers financial assistance to participants based on your individual financial situation. Limited financial assistance is available to individuals and families who substantiate a need.

Due to the limited availability of funds for after school, families needing assistance should:

  1. Contact Workforce Solutions and complete paperwork to determine if qualified for public assistance. Call 713-334-5980 or visit their website. Families approved by Workforce Solutions can transfer their funds to a new location here.
  2. Apply to the YMCA for financial assistance until workforce solutions completes their approval process.
  3. Once Workforce Solutions has made a determination about assistance please provide an acceptance or denial letter to the YMCA
    1. If accepted, the YMCA will adjust your account for NCI payments and parent co- payments
    2. If denied, the YMCA will reassess the original financial assistance application and increase percentage based on need and current availability of funds.

To begin the process you must have a Y membership to create an online account. You can become a member by visiting our website, and to become a member and register for program of interest. To learn more, visit

After becoming a member, you can create an online account so that you can register for child care. Please note that it may take up to 24 hours for paperwork to be processed. Paperwork must be processed entirely before your child may begin the program.


The Y believes that staff training is essential to providing quality programs. Y staff members maintain current First Aid and CPR certifications. Each staff member also completes eight hours of pre-service orientation training and an additional 20-30 hours of training per year. All potential employees are required to pass a criminal background screening and FBI background check which includes fingerprinting.

Y staff members are not permitted to have outside contact with children enrolled in our before and after school care programs. Please do not ask staff to babysit, drop off or pick up your child.

The Directors of Operations below can assist with general questions regarding Out of School Time Programs. Connect with your child’s program director should you need assistance with your account or have site or program specific questions or feel free to email our general YMCA account at

Teresa Arana
Conroe ISD
Huntsville ISD
Willis ISD

Kendra Carroll
Aristoi Classical Academy – Cypress
Aldine ISD
Houston ISD
Tomball ISD
Spring ISD

Josh Cruz
Alief ISD
Alvin ISD

Clear Creek ISD
Dickinson ISD
Goose Creek ISD
Lamar Consolidated ISD
Pearland ISD
Spring Branch ISD

Monica Richardson
Channelview ISD
Galena Park ISD
Humble ISD

Jocole Rogers
Aristoi Classical Academy – Katy
Katy ISD


Staff members are trained in basic emergency procedures to respond to natural disasters (floods, tornados, hurricanes, etc.), hostile situations, fire escape routes and other emergencies.


The YMCA of Greater Houston will run on-site emergency drills to ensure everyone involved is prepared. Your child might experience those drills on the following basis.

  • Monthly-Fire Drills
  • Periodic-Severe weather, hostile situations/lockdown, water rescues, first aid and evacuations

Evacuation Procedures

In the event of an evacuation due to a gas leak, fire or other facility issue, your child will be relocated to a secured off-site location and you will be notified immediately via email and / or phone call to pick them up.

If evacuation is necessary, staff will relocate campers to a designated safe area or alternate shelter known to all employees, caregivers and volunteers. Evacuation procedures also address the care of children with limited mobility or who otherwise may need assistance in an emergency, such as children with mental, visual or hearing impairments. Head counts and roll sheets will be used to account for campers and conducted by two or more caregivers. At all times, our emphasis will be on keeping campers safe.

Severe Weather Procedures

In situations where severe weather develops during the day, we may communicate and ask that parents pick up their youth early to ensure that both youth and staff can get home safely. Parents will be notified by email.

If there is advance notice of severe weather and location start times are delayed, do not open or have an early closure, parents will be communicated with via email.


Parents/guardians are encouraged to dress youth to maintain a comfortable body temperature. In warmer months, wear lightweight cotton. In colder months, wear layers of clothing. Closed toe shoes are encouraged at all times. During warm seasons, participants are encouraged to take a break and re-hydrate every 30 minutes. Water stations are available in program area. “Cool down” periods are incorporated during outdoor and strenuous activities.

During cold seasons, participants are encouraged to wear coats/sweater for outdoor play when the temperature is below 65 degrees. Outdoor play is avoided when the temperature is below 45 degrees.


The Texas Health and Human Services requires a minimum of one staff member per 22 to 26 children. The Y strives for a ratio of one staff member per 20 children. Each Y site will have at least two staff members present at all times.


By choosing licensed child care, you and your family join your child in new experiences and relationships. You, the Program Director and the site staff have a responsibility to protect the health, safety and well-being of your child. The Texas Human and Health Services (HHS) is also a part of this partnership.

A copy of minimum standards required for licensing school age before and after school programs and most recent inspection is available for your review at the school site or it can be found online at You may also request a copy of these standards or the inspection report from your local child care office. A list of these offices may be found on the HHS website:, DFPS website: or by calling the Child Care Information Line at 713-287-3238 or 1-800-862-5252. The operation’s most recent licensing inspection report is also available for your review at the school site.


The YMCA of Greater Houston participates in the Texas Rising Star program. It is a quality rating and improvement system (QRIS) for childcare, after-school and camp programs participating in the Texas Workforce Commission’s (TWC) Child Care Services program. Texas Rising Star certification is available to licensed centers and licensed/registered childcare home facilities that meet the certification criteria.

The Texas Rising Star program offers three levels of quality certification (Two-Star, Three-Star, and Four-Star) to encourage child care and early learning programs to attain progressively higher levels of quality. These certification levels are tied to graduated enhanced reimbursement rates for children receiving child care scholarships.


The YMCA of Greater Houston is committed to keeping all children safe and we make every effort to prevent child abuse. The Y recognizes that child abuse exists in a number of forms, including emotional, physical, and sexual abuse, as well as child neglect. As mandated reporters, it is our responsibility to recognize and report all suspected child abuse to the appropriate authorities.

To help prevent child abuse, the YMCA of Greater Houston has implemented the following procedures:

  1. Our staff and volunteers are trained on comprehensive and innovative practices around child safety to ensure children are safe in our care. This includes annual child abuse prevention training. When we KNOW how abuse happens and SEE the warning signs we can RESPOND quickly to prevent it.
  2. For the safety of children entrusted in our care, the YMCA conducts and requires a background check and references for all camp staff, as well as every person employed in or by our centers and programs.
  3. Allegations or suspicions of child abuse are taken seriously and are reported to the police and state agencies for investigation.
  4. Parents/guardians of youth involved in the alleged incident will be notified immediately following fact-gathering. They will not be informed if doing so places the child at further risk of significant harm. The investigation will conclude once appropriate advice has been sought after and received from the police and state agencies. Advice received from the police and state agencies will be taken into consideration when determining what and whether or not communication with families not involved in the incident will take place.
  5. YMCA programs are structured and observed so that staff and volunteers are never the only adult present with children with the possible exception of emergency situations.
  6. Evaluations are conducted with parents regarding day to day experiences, encouraging reports of any event out of the ordinary.
  7. Staff are required to report all incidents and/or the disclosure of abuse.

A key to keeping children safe is a child’s ability to seek help. They need to know that there are adults at the Y, and at home, who will listen and respond in a supportive way. It is important to be aware that child abusers can be parents, caretakers, friends, neighbors, or even other youth.

  1. Talk to your child – Share with your child that he or she can say “NO” to an adult friend, family member, or an older child, if they act inappropriately.
  2. Be Proactive – Create an environment that encourages children to share their views and concerns. Then really listen to them. Establish safety rule online and offline.

If faced with your child disclosing abuse, or if there is a situation where you suspect abuse, but are not sure or don’t have proof, call the child abuse helpline and get support. Trust your gut and your instincts and take action immediately. If you would like to report a suspicion that a child has been harmed or is at risk of being harmed by abuse or neglect, call the Child Abuse Hotline: 1-800-252-5400. IF YOU BELIEVE A CHILD IS IN IMMEDIATE DANGER OF HARM, CALL 911 FIRST. Thank you for helping us keep our children safe.


We partner with countless organizations that believe Houston youth deserve access to quality before school and after school care. Some of our past and current partners include:

Science Technology Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) activities for youth and staff development opportunities.

  • CASE for Kids
  • Comp-U-Dopt
  • Houston Children’s Museum
  • Imagine Science

Youth Development Program Assessment Tools and staff development opportunities.

  • Weikart Center for Program Quality

Curriculum and resources focused on creating a sense of belonging so ALL feel safe, accepted and welcomed.

  • YUSA Child Abuse Prevention Grant
  • Opening the Breadbasket

Social and Emotional Learning activities for youth and staff development opportunities.

  • Harmony
  • SEE Learning
  • UT Health
  • We Optimize

Physical Health education and activities for youth.


Curriculum focused on aiding youth reading at, or above, grade level by the end of third grade.

  • Learning Ovations

Financial Assistance to ensure access to all that seek care.

  • Houston Methodist
  • Perry Homes
  • Robert and Janice McNair Foundation
  • United Healthcare
  • United Way of Greater Houston
  • United Way of Greater Baytown & Chambers County

Over 20 school districts, charter / private schools across Greater Houston region to offer care to families at 180 plus campuses.

Aldine ISD

Alief ISD

Alvin ISD

Aristoi Classical Academy

Channelview ISD

Clear Creek ISD

Conroe ISD

Dickinson ISD

Fort Bend ISD

Galena Park ISD

Goose Creek ISD

Houston ISD

Humble ISD

Huntsville ISD

Katy ISD

Lamar Consolidated ISD

Pearland ISD

Sheldon ISD

Spring Branch ISD

Spring ISD

St. Clare of Assisi Catholic School

Tomball ISD

Willis ISD


A membership can be put on hold for up to 3 months in a calendar year. A request to hold can be made at our Welcome Center and must be completed 10 days prior to your next scheduled draft.

While we would hate to see you go, you can cancel your membership at any time. We offer a 30-day money back guarantee if you decide to cancel your membership. A request to cancel can be made at our Welcome Center and must be completed 10 days prior to your next scheduled draft.

To do this, complete a Membership Change Form available at the Welcome Center. This must be done 10 days prior to your next scheduled draft.

A $30 service charge will be applied on any returned transaction. If you notice a discrepancy on your statement, please notify us promptly.

Refunds are not issued for discrepancies more than 90 days.


UT Health McGovern Medical School

Navigate Life Texas

PATH Project-Partners Resource Network

Texas Parent‐to‐Parent (Children Disabilities Resource)‐lists/Houston‐Vicinity‐2018‐en.pdf

Parent Companion: First Five Years (A guide for Texas parents and caregivers of children with diagnosed or suspected disabilities from birth through five years of age)

Bilingual Parent Resources (Help for Parents. Hope for Kids)

Meal Planning and Nutrition Resources

Professional Development Trainings on Health and Nutrition:

Breastfeeding Help Sources

Farm Fresh Resource

Oral Health Resource

Child Care Health Consultant (CCHC) Resource

Healthy Child Care Texas Resource

Health Benefit Resources

ECI Resources Child_CombinedPDF_EngSpn-2-15-20_508.pdf

Screen Time Resource Time.aspx

Other Resources


For questions about our program or the policies in this handbook, please email