Shelbyville child care center already on probation cited for 5 critical violations

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SHELBYVILLE, Ind. (WTHR) — 13 Investigates first reported problems at the Children Today Child Care Center in Shelbyville in December. The state lists 16 critical health and safety violations at the facility over the past year and a half.

The latest inspection Jan. 11 seems to indicate that problems may be getting worse at the child care center. But president Jeff Owen insists that changes and improvements are on the way to meet the state standards.

The inspection conducted by the Indiana Family and Social Services Administration just last Friday reports 32 violations at the facility. That compares to 18 a month ago.

Children Today Child Care Center is operating on a probationary license because of past critical violations, which the state agency says pose a serious health and safety risk to children.

"We are trying and we're going to be compliant with the state," said Owen during a phone interview Wednesday. "We don't blame anybody but ourselves. We're going to try to do the best job that we can."

The Jan. 11 inspection report cites 32 violations, five of them critical and 10 repeat violations for the only state-licensed child care facility in Shelbyville. The critical violations include:

  • Paint is chipping off the walls in most classrooms and the hallways, and the walls throughout the center are dirty. (Repeat violation)
  • The 15-passenger van that is being used to transport children is not permitted in a licensed child care center.
  • Two previous staff persons without documentation of orientation. One new staff person without documentation of orientation. Two previous staff persons without universal precautions training documentation. Two new staff persons without universal precautions training documentation.
  • Two previous staff persons without documentation of child abuse/neglect training within the first two weeks of employment. One new staff person without child abuse/neglect training within the first two weeks of employment.
  • Bottle of bleach water solution and bottle of liquid sanitizer accessible to children in unlocked lower upper cabinet above classroom handwashing sink.

"I would take exception with the comment that paint is chipping in most of the classrooms,” said Owen. “I am sorry that the walls have chip marks and what not. In a perfect world, they wouldn't. We're aware of the problems with the paint. We're going to address them, and they will be fixed when the state comes back out." Children Today faces a February 28th deadline to correct the violations, or face losing its license.

"It's not a decision that we take lightly,” said Nicole Norvell, FSSA Director of the Office of Early Childhood and Out of School Learning. “It's something that we only do after we feel like other attempts to correct issues haven't been successful."

"We are addressing those concerns,” said Owen. “I think we're going to be in good shape when they come back out. Hopefully we'll come off probation. We've got a wonderful contractor that we're using there for new flooring and what not. We had some issues."

Owen says the Shelbyville facility currently cares for about 65 children and enrollment has actually increased in the past month.

Parents can review the inspection record of any state-licensed child care facility on the FSSA website using the Child Care Finder tool.

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