Middle School Panther Den (Extended Day) Parent Handbook
What is Panther Den?
Middle School Panther Den is a fee-based, drop-in after school program open to all 5th-8th grade students at Mounds Park Academy. The fee is $12/day and includes a structured and supervised place after school for structured study, outdoor time, age-appropriate activities, projects, and classes. Families are billed for dates of use at the end of each month.
Panther Den opens immediately after school releases at 3 PM and closes at 6 PM. Students meet in the cafeteria for snack and check-in and then move to a designated room unless otherwise specified (for activities, etc.).
All 5th-8th grade students still in the building at 3:20 PM without faculty supervision must sign in to the Panther Den. This includes students who are enrolled in after school activities that do not start until after 3:20 PM. Siblings who wait for an older brother or sister are to be registered in the Panther Den program; an Upper School student may not supervise the younger student.
Students in 5th through 8th grade may sign themselves out provided their ride is on campus. Parents can communicate their arrival by calling the Panther Den directly, or by texting their child on their own personal device (the only purpose for which these devices are allowed).
Please do not ask your child to skip Panther Den for any reason. If the cost of Panther Den is a hardship, please contact us.
Panther Den will also facilitate special interest clubs and groups. These options will be presented to each family throughout the school year for registration.
*Please note, students are not required to join Panther Den in the morning. Students may go to the cafeteria for independent study before school begins.
Panther Den Information:
Extended Day Director: Russ Purdy
Middle School Panther Den Location: Panther Den room
Panther Den Hours: 3-6 PM (school days), 7 AM-6 PM (full day care)
Rate: $12 per afternoon, $50 per full day
We go outdoors many times a week, weather permitting. All students who are well enough to be at Panther Den are expected to participate in outdoor activities. We will follow school guidelines for indoor recess in the event of cold weather. In hot weather, we will follow hot weather safety precautions by limiting time outside and offering water breaks.
Panther Den Staff:
All Panther Den staff members must complete a background check before working in the program. Staffs are trained in First Aid and CPR, as well as other program related areas.
Panther Den parents will have access through the south entrance from 4:30-6 PM by a limited use fob (a small deposit will be required) which can be picked up in the north reception area (business office). The buzzer system will have both a visual feed and a voice feed. A receptionist at the north entrance between 4:30 and 6 PM will monitor access to the south entrance.
After School Electronic Device Policy:
Leave electronics, cell phones, and valuables at home or in locker. Students can be reached directly through Panther Den phone . Using devices to watch television shows or music videos, etc. is strictly prohibited.
*Exception: Middle School students are permitted to receive texts from parents/guardians.
Non-school day Panther Den Summary:
Age of Students we serve: 5th grade through 8th grade
Program capacity: Up to 30 children. Ratio is 1:15.
Hours of Operation: 7 AM-6 PM
Cost: $50 per day
*Enrollment minimum is 5 students (must be registered at least 2 weeks prior to day of service). On many non-school days, Panther Den is open from 7 AM until 6 PM.
Full day activities will be communicated one month in advance. Oftentimes we take exciting field trips or enjoy on-campus presentations and activities.
Registration forms are sent home with your student at least one month before the scheduled full release day. You must register your child by the deadline listed. There is a $10 late registration fee for each late registration accepted—but please note that late registrations may not be accepted due to limited space.
Full day care service will be canceled if minimum enrollment is not reached two weeks prior to the day of service. Please read each registration form for additional information and policies. You may submit school release day registration forms to the MS reception desks or to Panther Club staff. You will be billed at the end of the month for service. Please do not send payment with registration.
Please do not hesitate to contact a staff for further information. We are proud to serve our Middle School families and we look forward to a great school year!