A Duluth day care's license was placed on conditional status for two years last week following multiple reported violations regarding unsupervised children.
University Nursery School's Jefferson Square location, at 916 E. Third St., is currently on probation after eight reported incidents where children were left alone or unsupervised over the past year, according to a conditional license order sent to the day care by the Department of Human Services dated Oct. 22.
The order laid out the eight incidents, which triggered the action by DHS. Incidents of non-compliance determined violations were:
- On Sept. 17, a child was left in one infant room unsupervised for approximately five minutes while the rest of the children in the room moved to another infant room.
- On Sept. 18, a child was left unsupervised for less than a minute in a hallway when a group of toddlers were transitioning to the bathroom.
- Also on Sept. 18, a child was left unsupervised for less than a minute in the preschool classroom when the rest of the class went outside to the playground.
- On May 30, three children were unsupervised and accessed a stairway to a community building. The incident spurred a maltreatment investigation by DHS and resulted in a fine of $1,000.
- On April 25, a child was left outside the front of the building without any staff person's knowledge or supervision, which resulted in a maltreatment investigation by DHS.
- On March 28, a preschool child was unsupervised for approximately 50 minutes, during which time the child was considered missing and was later found in the bathroom located next to the preschool classroom.
- On Oct. 15, 2018, a child in a downstairs preschool classroom walked upstairs unsupervised by staff.
- On Aug. 10, 2018, a preschool child left the classroom without supervision by staff, walked upstairs and was discovered by another staff person.
The day care was also cited twice for serving noodles that contained eggs to a child who was allergic to eggs and serving cheese to a child who was allergic to dairy. Both of these incidents occurred in the past year.
The center was also cited for not developing an individual child care program plan for a child with a known allergy.
The order stated that the center has to "immediately correct the violations cited" and submit documentation to its licensor within 30 days of receiving the order explaining how the violations have been corrected.
"If you fail to demonstrate substantial compliance with child care center licensing requirements or with the terms of your conditional license ... DHS may take additional licensing action, including revocation, against your license," the order stated.
The center has 30 days to meet all the required conditional license terms such as developing a detailed supervision plan, training for staff members and notifying parents of the conditional status.
The University Nursery Schools' Jefferson Square location does have the right to request reconsideration in writing within 10 calendar days of receiving the order.
The licenses for University Nursery Schools' other locations are not affected by this order. The Jefferson Square center, which had recently moved into its current location, has corrective orders dating back to 2015 with a maltreatment investigation being conducted in 2016 after a child was left outside on the playground unsupervised for 15 minutes.
University Nursery School CEO and head director Kathleen Das declined to comment on this story.