“There are little kids. They’re human beings. They’re not just a box that you’re throwing up, putting on a shelf, and getting out of a warehouse. These are kids."
This Waynesboro resident, who wishes to remain anonymous, is a former employee at Bright Beginnings Child Care of Waynesboro, in Franklin County.
“I just remember being really intimidated by the job because I was by myself with a lot of kids.”
She said the award-winning school was not what it appeared to be from the outside, especially when the state came by for inspection.
“There was times when the inspector would come and I would have somebody helping me. As soon as the inspector would leave, I would be back to having 30 kids by myself.”
So when news of the incident came out, she wasn’t at all surprised.
“The teacher was probably by herself, and she probably walked in the kitchen to get kids more snack, leaving the kids unattended, and it’s easy enough for the kid to walk right out.”
Late last month a two year-old child allegedly wandered away from the daycare and was found near the edge of an above ground pool in a neighbors backyard.
And according to this Waynesboro resident, this is not the first time there has been an issue at Bright Beginnings.
“They would just ignore things. Kids would be allergic to diapers, they would just put whatever diapers on them.”
But Mike Hanosek, owner of the daycare, says this is the first time there has been an incident at Bright Beginnings in the 15 years they’ve been in business.
He declined to speak on camera, but did say they are cooperating with the state to get this most recent incident resolved.
The former employee we spoke with, though, says incidents have happened before.
In fact, her own son was enrolled at the daycare for some time, and was involved in an incident in 2013, when a teacher allegedly put her hands around her son’s neck.
Despite a police report, nothing ever came of that incident, but after the latest incident, she hopes the daycare is held accountable.
“Worse could have happened. That little boy could have drowned, and my little boy could have been choked til he was not able to breath. And what would his excuse have been then? They’re not taking any accountability for anything that’s happened in their daycare.”
Bright Beginnings was shut down on Thursday, and will remain closed as the Department of Human Services investigates further.
The owner of the daycare says they plan to appeal.