day care

Daycare Forgets 3-Year Old At Park And Handles It In The Worst Way Possible

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A mother from Wilmington, DE experienced what I think it is safe to say is every parent’s nightmare- her son was left behind at a park he was playing in with his daycare class. Thanks to a kind person at the park, the story has a happy ending but the most infuriating part is that the daycare has yet to apologize and also, seems to have been dishonest with the parents in regard to the details of the situation.

Niyesha Griffin describes what happened to her son and it will infuriate you. From 6abc.com:

She said her 3-year-old, Jeremiah, was with other children from Sharon Temple Daycare.

But, when other children lined up to leave, Jeremiah was left behind.

“Jeremiah got out of line and they left him,” Griffin said.

Griffin says she only found out her son had been left in the park when another daycare mother contacted her on Facebook earlier this week.

“As soon as they found out my son was not in their care, they should have called me,” she said.

 

She found out via another parent on FACEBOOK? I am completely enraged on her behalf. First of all, why does another parent know more than she does about a serious and potentially dangerous situation involving her child? Secondly, why in the world did the daycare not inform her of every single detail of this incident? Believe it or not, it does get worse:

After contacting the daycare, she found out Jeremiah’s father was told that he had been missing for about 10 minutes that day. He didn’t mention it to her, believing their son was missing for only 10 minutes.

The daycare gave her an incident report stating the incident happened between 11:30 and 11:45 a.m.

However, the entire incident may have lasted more than an hour.

 

The article goes on to describe a woman at the park finding Jeremiah and in realizing he was unsupervised, took him to a crossing guard. They waited for 15 minutes and when no one came for him, they brought him inside of a nearby school and called the police. An officer was dispatched at 12:42pm and cleared at 1:06pm. That sounds like a lot more than 10 minutes missing to me and a whole lot more complicated than the daycare incident report indicates.

Griffin states that no one from the daycare has apologized, which is infuriating. She also wants to find the woman who helped Jeremiah to thank her- it’s a good thing there was someone there who took action as anything could have happened to a 3-year old alone at a park. As far as punishment, the State Department of Childcare Licensing confirms that the daycare has been put on a 6-month Warning of Probation. If you ask me, the punishment needs to be much harsher for an offense this serious.

When our kids were four and two, our daycare had an “incident” where a child was left behind in the bathroom…across the hallway from his classroom. Another teacher found him and it was determined he had been away from his class for no more than a few minutes. The daycare contacted the state and a full investigation was conducted along with all parents being notified of the incident by letter. The teacher who left him behind was put on probation and she personally (and tearfully) apologized to every parent in the class. This was our daughter’s teacher and I still had 4000% trust in her because these things happen and I know she felt terrible about it. Considering the child was right across the hall and obviously, he was totally fine, I thought they overdid it but it made me very confident that our kids were in a safe place where errors are immediately acknowledged and dealt with. I know that daycare centers can have these things happen but it is how they fix the problem and how they repair the confidence of the parents that matters most. I wish Niyesha Griffin could say this was how it went with her son’s daycare. No parent should have to contemplate the safety of their child while they are with a daycare teacher they should be able to trust.

(Image: Luxor Photo/Shutterstock)

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