Center staff is accused of leaving a child in hot van following field trip, failed to report incident
The Louisiana Department of Education Thursday revoked the license of an early learning center in Ascension Parish after a child was left alone in a hot van following a field trip. Center staff are accused of failing to report the critical incident to the child’s parents and to the appropriate state agencies.
“We are thankful this young child is safe,” said State Superintendent John White, “but we cannot ignore the negligence displayed by this center.”
The Department’s Division of Licensing inspected A-Z Kidzzone Daycare and Learning Center, located at 14504 Highway 431 in St. Amant, after receiving a complaint of a critical incident on June 19 in which a child was left alone in a hot van owned by the center for an undetermined amount of time following a field trip to a local water park. The child was able to unlock the vehicle, exit it, walk to the front of the early learning center, and knock on the door to be let inside.
The center failed to immediately notify the child’s parents. The parent later learned of the incident from the child and called the center to confirm it. The center also failed to report within 24 hours the critical incident to the Department’s Division of Licensing and to the Louisiana Department of Children and Family Services, which investigates instances of possible child abuse and neglect.
Furthermore, the center failed to obtain and maintain signed parent authorization for the field trip, record the names of the children, staff and drivers traveling in each van who attended the field trip, and conduct a visual passenger check and a face-to-name count during any part of the field trip.
A-Z Kidzzone Daycare and Learning Center has 15 calendar days from receipt of the notice of revocation to appeal the decision. Providers who have had their licenses revoked are ineligible to apply for licensure for two years. Operating a child care center without a license may result in an order to cease and desist, as well as an injunction from a court prohibiting the continued operation of a child care center without a license and placement on the statewide registry of individuals prohibited from operating a child care center.