FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
June 23, 2000
FURTHER INFORMATION:
Patricia Harris-Morehead at
(615) 313-4707 or Lisa Gallon at
(615) 313-4728

DHS SUSPENDS LICENSE OF NASHVILLE CHILD CARE CENTER

NASHVILLE—The Tennessee Department of Human Services (DHS) today suspended the license of a Nashville child care center after concluding its licensing investigation regarding a 4-year-old child who was left at a Brentwood Skating Rink earlier this week.

Officials at the Learning Webb Day Care Center, located at 4430 Winston Avenue, were served the suspension order earlier today and must close immediately. A "show cause" or probable cause hearing on the suspension has been scheduled for next week. (June 27th at 9 a.m. in the 2nd floor conference room of the Citizens Plaza State Office Building, 400 Deaderick Street.)

At that hearing, an independent hearing officer will decide if the suspension was justified, and whether it should be continued or lifted. If the hearing officer lifts the suspension at this hearing, the DHS still could proceed with revoking the license if it decides it is warranted.

The alleged incident occurred on June 20, 2000 during a field trip. According to DHS, the agency violated licensing rules regarding transporting children and management’s and staff’s responsibilities. Officials say the center also has a lengthy history of other violations.

DHS is responsible for licensing family homes, group homes, and child care centers in Tennessee. The state agency also has the authority to suspend, revoke, or deny child care licenses for serious violations. Last October, the agency implemented a zero-tolerance policy after a series of careless incidents that jeopardized the health and safety of children continued to occur at a number of child care agencies.

"We are suspending this license under our zero tolerance policy due to the serious nature of the recent violation, " state Human Services Commissioner Natasha Metcalf said.

"Situations that jeopardize the health and safety of children in licensed child care facilities are thoroughly investigated, reviewed, and considered on a case-by-case basis before the zero tolerance policy is applied."

"We are deeply concerned about the health and safety of all children and will continue to use all available enforcement tools to ensure that children are safe while attending child care," Metcalf said

The Learning Webb Day Care Center is licensed to care for up to 50 children. Approximately 24 of the children are in the state’s child care subsidy program. The center’s annual license was renewed in February of this year and was first licensed by the state in 1982.

Parents who need assistance finding child care are urged to contact the DHS Child Care Resource and Referral Office at 313-4820, Monday – Friday, between 8 a.m. until 5 p.m. Parents with children who attend the center and participate in the state’s subsidy program should contact the Davidson County Child Care broker agency at 880-2300 for assistance in arranging other care.

 

 

Editor’s Note: To request a copy of the entire summary suspension order, please call the DHS Communications Office at 313-4707.

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