Daycares in Missouri being allowed to take in more kids

Local daycares weigh in on the idea

JOPLIN, Mo. – Marye Lallemand, owner of Wee Tots Daycare, is doing everything she can to keep kids at her daycare safe and healthy.

“Taking temperatures of children when they arrive, and a second time during the day to make sure… any kind of illness, they go home,” says Lalleman.

With schools and Head Start programs across the area closing and extending their spring breaks because of the coronavirus. parents are concerned about what might happen with daycares.

“They’re panicking. They’re asking every day are we shutting down, are we shutting down? And [we’re] like, no not until they mandatory us to shut down. We will not shut down,” says Tabitha Bailey with Dinosaur Academy Daycare.

To help fill some of the gap, the state is letting child care services, like daycares, take in more kids.

The Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services says in areas where schools are closed because of the coronavirus, they will be letting child care services exceed their capacity by one-third.

So, if their capacity is 10, for example, they’re be able to take 13.

Something that Lallemand would be willing to do.

“Just to help parents out. I’m at full max right now, but I’m not gonna take an abundance of em. But I’d take four of five possibly,” says Lallemand.

And over at Dinosaur Academy, they currently have room for six more two to five-year-olds.

But once they’re full, they’re gonna leave it at that.

“You’re just packing the kids in and it’s just you’re asking for something. And you can’t watch your kids properly with that many kids. You just can’t do it. And keep everything sanitized, and everything clean and the kids clean,” says Bailey.

Child care services will have to maintain the normal ratio of staff to children, so some daycares may have to hire more staff.