The State Department of Human Services has closed a West Knoxville daycare facility after what it called “repeated and escalating” violations.
Helping Hands Child Care was ordered to cease operations immediately because the facility poses “a danger to children in its care.” The order goes on to say the summary suspension was ordered “to protect the health, welfare and safety of the children in the care of the agency.”
First opened in 2011, Helping Hands was cited numerous times for violations of regulations and childcare licensing laws. At least 31 violations were noted. And the center was put into a probationary status earlier this year for supervision violations. March 15, the facility was hit with $1,400 in civil penalties for seven repeat supervision violations.
Since then, the center received 17 additional violation citations. May 2, two preschool-aged children were found in the parking lot, wandering toward the road while the rest of their group was on the playground.
Some of the other violations include failure to adhere to sign-in/sign-out protocols, violating the allowed adult-to-child ratio, inappropriate discipline and inappropriate record keeping.