BRUNSWICK, Ohio — Sunday is the date that day cares throughout Ohio can open up per Governor Mike DeWine’s orders. But that doesn’t mean all of them are planning to open.
Stephanie Roksandich, the owner of Brunswick Prep Academy, is waiting until June 8 to open her doors.
Brunswick Prep Academy normally takes care of about 40 kids in various classrooms each day with ages ranging from 18 months to 5-years-old.
Roksandich said she and her employees miss the kids and families they’ve grown so accustomed to.
“We are ready for the kids to come back. It’s definitely a shut down we are not used to having, we don’t go on vacation like this,” she said.
But she doesn’t want to rush reopening her doors and is consulting with other day care administrators on more specific safety protocols compared to the state’s guidelines.
“Most of the information, I think this is the most frustrating part for us and for administrators, it’s been basic,” she said. “I was waiting for more black or white, this is what you have to do, this is what you cannot do, even as far as playhouses outside. Can we have those? Can we go in and out of those?”
The state did give some guidelines for childcare centers when it comes to reopening:
- Childcare providers must operate under reduced staff to child ratios and maximum group size limitations at all times-
- 1 staff member per 4 infants
- 1 staff member per 6 toddlers
- 1 staff member per 9 preschool children
- 1 staff member per 9 school age children
Employees must perform daily symptom assessments, wear masks, there must be social distancing measures in place and rigorous hand washing and sanitizing.
Roksandich said a lot of the guidelines the state requires, are things she already has in place, and she, and other day care providers she spoke with, have some more specific questions.
“I’m not real sure what the expectation is as far as the teaching goes. Can we sit at the table and do our lessons together, like they’re used to? Can we do our circle time on the floor like we used to? Obviously, we will try to be spreading them apart a little bit, but it’s hard to be keeping kids from hugging their friends and high fives,” she said.
She said she sent out a survey to her families that ask whether they feel comfortable sending their children back to daycare, and about 50% of them said they would.
The day care will open up June 8.