INDIANAPOLIS -- The Indiana Family and Social Services Administration has cited a south side day care for using inappropriate discipline following a Facebook video that appeared to show a worker dragging a child by the arm.
The incident happened on November 3 at La Petite Academy, 4116 Kildeer Drive in Indianapolis.
FSSA conducted an inspection on November 7 at the facility and issued the following citations:
- Lack of supervision with preschool children on the playground
- A caregiver used inappropriate, harsh discipline with a child
- The (day care) director did not properly supervise a caregiver that used inappropriate discipline with a child
FSSA also found the caregiver who used inappropriate discipline had not received documented child abuse prevention/detection training within the previous 12 months, records show.
Staff should receive documented training in recognizing and reporting child abuse and neglect within the first two weeks of employment, and the day care director should update the training annually, according to FSSA.
“We are still in the process of completing our investigation and determining any actions that will be taken,” said FSSA spokesperson Marni Lemons. “They will have to make corrections and submit their plan of correction to our Office. We ask that it be sent to the consultant within ten days.” Lemons said FSSA would review their plan for compliance.
The employee in the Facebook video has not been criminally charged or arrested. A Le Petite Academy spokesperson said Monday the worker is no longer employed with the facility.
“We will continue to work cooperatively with the state Bureau of Child Development to ensure we fully meet or exceed all licensing requirements,” said Lydia Cisaruk, director of communications for La Petite Academy. “We’ll continue to review our protocols on supervision and the positive guidance and redirection of children in ongoing training. We remain committed to providing high-quality early education and nurturing care.”
Cisaruk would not comment, due to confidentiality, whether the employee was fired or resigned.
The 3-year-old child in the video, Damont’e, is doing well, according to his parents. Damont’e is still attending La Petite Academy.
HOW TO CHECK A CHILD CARE FACILITY:
- Plug in a provider's name to ChildCareFinder.IN.Gov and look for complaints, inspection reports, and any pending enforcement
- Use your eyes and ears when visiting. Are they following safe sleep? Is equipment working? Are children strapped into their high chairs?
- Drop by the child's day care unexpectedly during the day. What is seen at pickup and drop off may be very different than what's happening during the middle of the day
- Ask to see the provider's license or registration, which should be posted in a public area. If the provider is on probation, it will say so on the license, along with the reasons why.
- Ask to see a copy of the day care's discipline policy. Corporal punishment is not illegal in the state of Indiana
- Ask what their current child-to-staff ratio is. Experts say accidents are more likely to happen when staffers are watching a lot of children.
- Ask if the provider is part of the state's voluntary rating system, called Paths to Quality. The state said this helps guarantee they're meeting and/or exceeding licensing requirements regardless of type of day care
- If you use an unlicensed facility, know they do not have to submit to background checks, CPR training, safe sleep training, and other requirements. Ask to see proof your provider has completed these.
For more information, go to ChildCareIndiana.org