GONZALES– Someone hid a public notice posted on the front door of a daycare after the state revoked its license to operate.
The Adventures in Learning child care center, located at 14469 Highway 44 in Gonzales, had its license revoked Friday morning after the Louisiana Department of Education received a complaint that the center left 12 young children alone with an individual who was not a staff member on Dec. 28.
Additionally, upon inspection, staff cited the center with 32 deficiencies, including failure to obtain a criminal background check for the supervisors of the children, violation of child-to-staff ratios and failure to properly train staff on health and safety procedures such as CPR and first aid.
"The center acted irresponsibly, putting the lives of children at risk," said State Superintendent of Education John White. "Such negligence cannot be tolerated, and the Department is forced to act in these situations."
When News 2 arrived at the daycare Friday evening, the state notice was nowhere to be found. State regulations require the posted notice to remain visible at all times.
Parents picking up their children said they had no knowledge that the daycare's license had been revoked. The owner, Miranda Robertson, told News 2 she was not aware of state officials visiting her business that morning.
She described this as a huge mistake and the state had wrongly announced it was her day care that had its license revoked.
News 2 then checked other nearby daycares to see if there had been a mistake. But after double-checking with the Department of Education, News 2 returned to Adventures in Learning and discovered someone had covered the notice on the front door.
Robertson was gone by that time so News 2 reached out to her through social media. After asking her repeatedly why the notice was hidden, she finally wrote that it was taped over to prevent it from flying off in the wind.
State officials thanked News 2 for reporting the violation and said they will return to the daycare on Monday.
The center has also been cited for more than 100 deficiencies in the last seven inspections, including citations of daily attendance records for children, staff, visitors and owners.
The Department of Education had already issued corrective action plans and provided technical assistance in efforts to help the daycare center clear its deficiencies, however the center did not comply.
The center is now ineligible for public funding through the Child Care Assistance Program, which helps make child care more affordable to low-income families. The department has alerted those families and is working closely with them to identify alternative options.
The center can continue to operate for 15 days and has an opportunity to appeal the department's decision.