Day care in molesting case has been cited for missed training

INDIANAPOLIS - A day care under scrutiny for an alleged child molestation involving a staff member was cited by the Indiana Family and Social Services Administration during its last inspection, Call 6 Investigator Kara Kenney found.

Records show Children's Choice Learning Center at St. Vincent Hospital failed to document or provide annual child abuse neglect training for all its staff members.

Children's Choice is a licensed center, which is required to train all staff in abuse and neglect reporting during the first two weeks of employment, and the center director is required to update the training annually.

Records show the center resolved the issue on Sept. 3, 2013, about 12 days after the Aug. 22, 2013 inspection.

The Family and Social Services Administration is also conducting its own investigation separate from the criminal investigation, according to FSSA spokeswoman Marni Lemons.

Bridget Perry, a spokeswoman for the center, told Call 6 Investigator Kara Kenney as soon as it was noted, all of the staff and teachers were brought into compliance regarding the training.

"We are continuing to fully cooperate with authorities and licensing in their current investigation, and given the situation, we are in the process of a full internal review into the center’s compliance with our policies and licensing guidelines," Perry said. "We understand and value the importance of mandated caregiver training.  All teachers and staff were brought up to date with required trainings after licensing’s review of the center last year."

The FSSA investigation comes after the child molestation arrest of Children's Choice employee Ali Al-Awadi.

Licensed centers are required to verbally report abuse or neglect to the Family and Social Services Administration and in writing within five days of the incident.

Licensed centers are also required by law to immediately report allegations of abuse and neglect to the child's parents and the state hotline or law enforcement.

Employees at the day care facility knew about -- but failed to immediately report -- child molestation allegations last week, according to court documents released Wednesday.

Al-Awadi faces felony charges of child molesting after he was arrested Friday.

Previous: Suspect arrested in alleged day care molestation

The court records detailed the allegation that a 4-year-old girl was molested and other employees failed to immediately report the crime to the child's parents and waited to report the allegations to the Indiana Department of Child Services.

The girl told police that Al-Awadi molested her during nap time at the day care center.

The child said she told another caregiver about what happened within an hour of the incident. That employee confronted Al-Awadi but did not report the allegations to the girl's parents, according to court documents. Nobody at the day care called police -- which is required by state law.

The day care also did not notify DCS until Friday, one day after the alleged crime, records show.

Previous: Day care employees failed to immediately report child abuse allegations

Court records revealed that Al-Awadi had been warned twice by day care workers not to pick up children capable of walking on their own.

He told police that the girl wrapped her legs around his arm while he picked her up. He said that any injuries to the girl must have been caused due to her rubbing against his wristwatch.

Al-Awadi denied the allegations and was suspended from the day care center.
 

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