KY childcare centers left in limbo after statewide closures

KY childcare centers left in limbo after statewide closures

HENDERSON, Ky. (WFIE) - In response to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear has ordered all childcare centers to close, starting at the end of the day on Friday.

“We were devastated," Pidder Padder Preschool owner and director Misty Todd said. “Everyone was panicking how they were going to pay their bills, who was going to watch their children.”

Privately-owned daycares, like Pidder Padder and Kidz World Childcare in Henderson, are worried about the weeks ahead.

Right now, owners and employees are left uncertain for the future holds.

“We have so many parents that have to go to work, so I just started thinking about the parents not being able to go to work," Kidz World Owner and President Tamika Johnson said. “Where would the kids go? Will their jobs get shut down or will they get terminated from their jobs? So it was just shock - everything was just running through my mind."

The federal government has said it’s going to assist daycare centers that receive subsidy funds.

This assistance will help some daycares, but as far as places like Kidz World and Pidder Padder are concerned - these daycares are privately-owned.

“We don’t receive subsidy, which means all of our families - their money pays our tuition, pays my payroll, takes care of all the bills for this business to run,” Todd said.

Parents have also expressed their concerns about daycare centers closing their doors.

“We’ve always relied on this for everything," Michelle Wells, a parent whose child attends Kidz World said. “It’s not just childcare. It’s their education. (At Kidz World) they follow a curriculum - it’s part of their normal routine. It’s going to be hard to get them used to not having that every day.”

And with no clear answers for the future, hope is all they can keep consistent.

“I’m not really panicking," Todd said. “I know God is only going to give us what we can handle. He’s always taken care of us. That’s really where I’m at.”

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