Child care center closing voluntarily following state inspection - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Child care center closing voluntarily following state inspection

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Creative World Child Development Center in Iowa City is about to close. Creative World Child Development Center in Iowa City is about to close.

Creative World Child Development Center in Iowa City is about to close.

This comes shortly after an unannounced licensing visit by the Iowa Department of Human Services.

"Those visits ensure that we're in the door and looking and making contact with the provider," said Chad Dahm, Chief of the Bureau of Child Care and Community Services. "Making sure that the kids are there and that they're safe and that the environment is safe."

We were not allowed on the child care center's property to talk to parents and we were told no employees would speak to the media.

But for the past year, the center has operated on a provisional license. That means an inspector found violations last year, like staff not washing hands as frequently as recommended, and some dirty toys.

There were also positives, however, like large rooms for the kids to play in and help for families with financial needs.

"There are times when a provisional license is not an option," said Dahm. "If it was a strong enough safety concern, then that would not be a concern. But if it's something that needs to be addressed through a corrective action plan, perhaps, we do that and we offer them an opportunity to work with us so we can get centers to where they need to be to provide quality care."

In 2012, the state issued 149 provisional licenses. There are around 1,400 licensed child care centers in Iowa, so more than 10 percent operate on provisional licenses.

"It's about ensuring that quality care is provided," said Dahm. "Sometimes it's a safety issue. Sometimes our concerns could be less than a safety issue. It might be a paperwork issue, but it's all about quality of care."

The center will close on Friday, July 12. It will be a voluntary closure.

Iowa Child Care Resource & Referral is working with the families impacted by this closure, helping parents find other centers to take their children.

A child care center can operate on a provisional license for two consecutive years. After that, owners can choose to close voluntarily or go through the process of having the license revoked.

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