Our first week of camps is approaching fast! As you get your students ready to attend Bright Lights this summer, here are a few things to keep in mind.
BEFORE CAMP Log in to your Active account (where you registered/paid for the camp) or refer to your confirmation email to double-check your camp name, start time and location. Our main camp site is Holmes Elementary (5230 Sumner Street) but we have many camps being held around Lincoln, so be sure to check your account and/or confirmation email for your camp’s location and address.
You will also receive an email from the camp teacher a few days before the camp begins, noting special items the students need to bring or special clothing that is needed. You will also learn a little bit about the teacher and the activities for the week.
ARRIVAL Vehicle and pedestrian traffic is a focus for Bright Lights, and we want to create a safe drop-off and pick-up environment at Holmes Elementary School, 5230 Sumner, our main program site. We ask that parents park a block or two away and walk their students to Door #4 (remembering to use the marked crosswalks), or use our car drop-off lane on the west side of Holmes and a staff member will get your student to the correct room.
A map and additional information is available at https://www.brightlights.org/programs/resources/maps.html.
If you have registered for Before Care (before a morning camp at Holmes), students can be dropped off at Holmes Door #4 on the west side of the building starting at 7:30 a.m. The Before Care room is just a few doors down the hallway from where your student will enter, and a staff member will be there to greet him or her.
Students may start arriving at 8:45 a.m. or 12:45 p.m. for "First 15" supervision before their camp is scheduled to begin. They should enter through Door #4 at Holmes and will be directed by a staff member where to go to meet their fellow campers. We will have even more staff on hand than usual the first day to make this new drop-off protocol go as smoothly as possible.
Have students taking Bright Lights camps in different places? Please drop off at the main site (Holmes) first (up to 15 minutes before their camp is scheduled to start) and then proceed to the community site. For pick-up, please pick up your student at the community site first and then proceed to the main site (Holmes).
LUNCH If you registered for Lunch Care for your student— or if they are in a full-day camp which includes lunch care—please be sure to send a packed lunch with them each day. Bright Lights does not provide lunch for students. If you plan to take your child to lunch and then return for camp in the afternoon, please let us know.
DISMISSAL At the end of camp each day at Holmes, teachers and camp assistants will bring students outside to the sidewalk on the west side of the building near the supervised drop-off/pick-up zone to reconnect with you. Please wait outside for your camper to exit the building. Students in Kindergarten-2nd grades are released from camp five minutes early to help you connect with your younger student or help them reach their transportation safely.
We ask that students alert their teacher when they see their pick-up person and wait for that person to make contact in front of the teacher. Older siblings can join their younger sibling's group for ease of pick-up.
Drivers may pull up in our supervised drop-off/pick up zone and safety supervisors will assist with locating the students and directing them to the appropriate vehicle. Please be ready to provide both your student’s name and camp title to the supervisors.
Picking up students at non-release times will require a photo ID at the front desk at Holmes, located through Door #4, or with the community site teacher. If a non-parent/guardian is picking up a camper, we must receive a phone call or note from the parent/guardian before we will release the student. This includes non-custodial parents. No exceptions will be made.
For safety purposes, please note that the Bright Light staff wear orange Bright Lights shirts, teachers wear blue and Camp Assistants wear green. Should you need to contact us during program weeks spent at Holmes Elementary, the direct line for Bright Lights is 402-436-1492.
WHAT HAS CHANGED DUE TO COVID-19 PROTOCOLS?
We are extremely happy to have in-person camps this year. We have implemented some new policies for this summer to keep our students, staff and volunteers as safe as possible. We understand these changes will take some getting used to, and we are very hopeful that next summer our program will be back to normal. Until that time, we truly appreciate you abiding by these protocols. Any questions and concerns can be directed to our executive director, Lori Paulsen, at firstname.lastname@example.org or our education coordinator, Renee Ford, at email@example.com.
Masks: Anyone on school property, inside or outside, is required to wear a multilayer face covering. Bandanas, plastic face shields and neck gaiters are not considered suitable replacements. Students will be required to wear a properly fitted mask during his/her time at camp. Bright Lights will have masks available for students and staff who do not have a mask to wear. There will be time during the day when students and staff can break from wearing a face covering.
Parents/Guardians in building: Due to social distancing concerns, we cannot have families enter the main site building (Holmes Elementary) during drop-off or pick-up. An exception will be made if a parent must pick up a student early. Please just call 436-1492 to let us know about the early pick-up.
Snacks and water: Snacks will not be served during our half-day camps. Students are encouraged to bring full water bottles that can be refilled. Paper disposable cups will be provided by Bright Lights for students who do not have water bottles.
Open house: This is traditionally one of our favorite ways to showcase the fun your student has during camp. However, this summer that will have to look different as we can't hold open houses due to the large number of people who enter small classrooms and the inability to keep the recommended social distance. We will have a way to share what your student learns, however, and will communicate that to you during camp.
HAD SO MUCH FUN YOU WANT TO DO IT AGAIN?
It’s not uncommon for a student to complete a camp the first week and want to come back - and they can! We keep registration open until a week before a camp begins. So, there’s plenty of time to add to your student’s Bright Lights experience with another amazing, hands-on camp the following weeks. Just go to BrightLights.org and click on the orange Register button to log in and add a camp to your existing account.
Now you know what to expect the first day of Bright Lights and beyond – safety, convenience and fun! We can’t wait to see you.