Do you use day care? Many working parents are forced to entrust their childrenâ€™s well-being and safety into the hands of day care centers workers so that they can go to work.
Letâ€™s face it; in this economy, with the high cost of everything, most of us need two-income households just to pay the bills. That leaves us at the mercy of childcare. That is why this story scares me so much.
Police say representatives from Our Little Darlings Day Care center left a 2-year-old girl behind on a Long Island beach. The group had been at the beach on an organized outing. I get that. I know little kids like to wander, but Iâ€™d like to think if I am paying you to care for my children you are actually keeping your eyes on them.
I donâ€™t think it should be out of the realm of possibility to expect the people I entrust my children with to actually be qualified caregivers, right? Accidents happen but why was it three hours before anyone called authorities to see if anyone had found the missing child? Did it take them three hours to realize that she was even missing? Were they hoping that she would hitch a ride back on her own?
Iâ€™m sure as mothers, you all have thought of all the horrific scenarios that could have easily played out. The little girl could have drowned. She could have been abducted, raped or murdered. She could have disappeared and never have been seen again.
How was the little girl finally returned, you ask? The toddler had wandered off and found a playmate in a child who was at Heckscher State Park with her own mother. Not until the mother wanted to leave at 3:30 pm did she begin to wonder where the hell the misplaced toddlerâ€™s mom was and she contacted the authorities.
What did Our Little Darlings Day Care expect? Why did they leave? I would think there is some sort of contingency plan in place if a child goes missing and I donâ€™t think getting back on the bus and heading back to the day care is it.
They just left the kid behind like she was some lost lovey. Donâ€™t they realize that the little toddler is someoneâ€™s child; someoneâ€™s everything?
This story makes me even more afraid to dip my toe in the childcare pool. My girls never went to day care and they have only ever been left in the care of a very few select baby sitters, and even then I had a hard time relinquishing my most precious asset into the hands of someone else. If something like this would have ever happened to my child, I would have probably said forget the whole thing and never left the house again.
Itâ€™s bad enough when you are out in public with your child and they hide behind your leg and give you a start because you canâ€™t immediately find them. Yes, my girlâ€™s loved this game when they were toddlers. Iâ€™m not proud to say that I ended up investing in leashes during the toddler years because I wanted to keep a watchful eye on their squirmy little bodies.
In the end, the little girl was safely returned to her very distraught mother. Iâ€™m sure that the toddlerâ€™s mother has taken a few personal days from work to seek out new day care.
Has your child ever been misplaced on a field trip or outing?
Photo Source: Tiare Scott