Owner of Lubbock children’s learning center says she can’t follow some recommended guidelines

Child Care Centers struggle with reopening restrictions

LUBBOCK, Texas (KCBD) - Kathy Sisson, owner of Lubbock children’s learning center Here We Grow, is worried about some of the recommended guidelines for child care centers provided on Monday. She says some of the recommended protocols are exaggerated, and she will not follow them.

She says social distancing is bad for children. The guidelines ask for individuals to stay six feet away from each other. She says after 33 years in the business, she knows social distancing is bad for the mental health of children and can inhibit their growing social skills.

“That’s like being in time out all day long and that’s wrong," Sisson said.

“Children learn through play, children learn from each other.”

She’s also concerned about parents having to wait outside to drop off and pick up their kids.

The state is recommending that teachers reduce group sizes, teaching fewer students and doing more one on one instruction.

“I called daycare licensing and said I cannot do this. If I follow the rules that we’re given, I have to say that 22 children must leave right now. What 22 am I supposed to chose and say, ‘Mom, come get these kids?’ I’m over ratioed.”

She’s worried that these protocols will turn into laws. If these guidelines become law, she says daycares and child learning facilities will go out of business. Child care rates will go up because fewer kids will be allowed to be enrolled and they’ll require more hired staff.

“If we don’t say, ‘You’re going to put us out of business’ and if we put all of these facilitates out of business, where are they going to go? To unregulated homes? People are going to keep these children that aren’t regulated, licensed, and protected by the state of Texas?”

Sisson went to Senator Charles Perry’s office Thursday morning and left her name and number there, hoping for a call back.

“I want him to fight for us.”

To the critics, she says what they’re doing now is sufficient and they were already following most of the recommended guidelines.

“We check their temperature, we quiz them and ask for any symptoms. Have you been sick at all? Fever? We take them to the restroom and wash their hands. What are we told? Wash your hands and keep them off your face and you’re less likely to get sick.”

Sisson says she would gladly be on a committee to represent and save Texas day cares.

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