By Crystal Howerton
Daycare owner Deloris Stauffer, of Edina, has confirmed recent rumors that Dee's Loving Care Center is closing, effective Friday, February 1, 2007.
Stauffer said that in spite of gossip to the contrary, the state is not shutting her down and the decision to close is solely her own. She admitted that although the center has been reported to the state on multiple occasions, these claims have not been substantiated. According to Stauffer, the reason for the close stems from recent changes at the bank which require certain guarantees that she is not comfortable making. "It's not always easy making some decisions, but they still have to be made regardless," said Stauffer.
"I loved the daycare and my children enjoyed it there," said Dayna McCabe. "I am actually sad to see it close." McCabe is the mother of two children, a 4-year-old and an 11-month-old who attend daycare at D.L.C. McCabe said that she began calling other daycares as soon as she received word of the upcoming closing. After contacting five or six daycares she was finally able to find one that had openings for both of her children, however that daycare is now full as well. Unfortunately, taking her children to the new daycare will require an extra 36 miles of driving each day.
Currently, there are 43 children enrolled in D.L.C., which brings up the question of where these children will be placed. There are six infants currently enrolled at D.L.C. and five more were expected by May. According to Stauffer, there are no openings for infants in Edina or Kirksville at present. Many of the daycares in the Edina area are not eligible to care for any additional children at this time, leaving a substantial daycare shortage. However, Stauffer said that she was planning to re-license for a family daycare in her home, which would provide care for up to ten children.
Additionally, there are eight full-time and four part-time employees who have been given notice regarding the upcoming closing. Stauffer has hopes that someone or an organization will take over. Buyers would receive the benefit of a "turnkey operation" as very little will be removed for Stauffer's in-home daycare.