Day care accused of violations fights to stay open despite state efforts

FSSA takes action to shut down Kid Co.

GREENWOOD, Ind. - An administrative law judge held a hearing Wednesday to determine whether Kid Co. Child Care Center should keep its license.

The state Family and Social Services Administration (FSSA) is taking action to shut down the Greenwood day care after finding dozens of health and safety violations.

Kid Co. Child Care Center remains open as the facility’s management appeals the state’s latest attempt to revoke its license.

Inspection records, letters and other documents obtained by the Call 6 Investigators reveal FSSA inspectors have found dozens of health and safety violations over the past year, including inappropriate handling of child abuse and neglect allegations, unsanitary conditions, inappropriate discipline, unsafe sleep practices and unreported injuries.

Roughly 15 minutes into the 9 a.m. hearing in the Government Center South, the judge asked the media and public to leave, after attorneys said they were going to discuss confidential information regarding children.

Just before noon, the hearing broke and members of the media were told the first witness called after lunch would also be held confidential.                               

FSSA records from June 2012 commented on the handling of child abuse and neglect allegations, saying, “The center failed to report two separate incidents to CPS immediately.”

Prashith Srivastava, president of Kid Co. Preschool & Childcare, said he would offer a statement once the proceedings were finished.

"I’m sorry, I can’t answer anything right now," Srivastava told Call 6 Investigator Kara Kenney. "I’m under the advisement by the attorney."

Attorney for Kid Co., Robert Baker, made brief comments when Kenney asked why they were fighting to keep the day care open.

"I’m sorry, I don’t understand why you would even ask that kind of a question," Baker said.

When Kenney pointed out the state is trying to shut down Kid Co., Baker responded.

"They’ve cited them, but we’re in an appeal hearing right now, and that’s what we’re gonna do is present our case,” Baker said.

According to Carefinder, last month’s FSSA inspection also cited the day care for not giving a toddler’s injury report to a parent, dirty floors and vents, unsafe sleep practices, unlabeled infant bottles and missing documentation for some staff members.

State inspection records also repeatedly raise concerns about how the day care supervises and disciplines children.

As recently as Sept. 12, 2013, inspectors found a staff person who had not been drug tested or background checked.

FSSA records show a January 2013 video revealed a teacher dragging a child by both of his legs from the hallway into a room at least three times.

The state also found a teacher using profanity with a child and a child’s head cut while fighting with another student while a teacher was present.

In a January 2013 video, FSSA found unsupervised children.

A state inspection from June 28 cited Kid Co. for ants and mice.

According to records obtained to the Call 6 Investigators, FSSA first took action to revoke Kid Co.’s license in June 2012 after concerns arose during an annual inspection visit.

In November 2012, both FSSA and the center reached a settlement agreement in which the center agreed to a slew of improvements including new training for staff.

As part of the agreement, Kid Co. withdrew its appeal and was issued a probationary license.

Days before the probationary was set to expire, FSSA took action once again to revoke the license based on noncompliances from inspections in January and February 2013.

On Feb. 26, FSSA issued another letter to Kid Co. notifying them the state was taking action to revoke their license.

Kid Co. management is appealing the February 2013 action and is allowed to operate during the appeals process.

The Carefinder website lists Kid Co.’s status as “Open- Enforcement Pending” which means it is under an enforcement action.

The judge did not make a decision on Kid Co.’s fate at Wednesday’s hearing, but a decision is expected within a month.

To read inspection reports on your child’s day care or check its license status, go to: the FSSA Carefinder website .

Follow Kara Kenney on Twitter: @karakenney6 | Facebook: KaraKenneyNews

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