12 On Your Side: Investigation shows many home child care providers not in compliance with law

By: Elizabeth Owens Email
By: Elizabeth Owens Email

News 12 at 6 o'clock / Monday, Dec. 6, 2011

AIKEN COUNTY, S.C. -- Any parent can tell you that daycare can be expensive.

That's why some parents opt for family child care home providers, who can sometimes cut those costs in half.

However, our investigation shows many providers in our area are not in compliance with a new law that requires them to take a training course.

Kendra's Law went into effect a year ago. It requires home daycare providers to take an annual two-hour training class that teaches them CPR and other child safety measures. The course is offered by Department of Social Services and is free.

The law came about after a home daycare provider slapped a 1-year-old so hard it caused her permanent brain injury. Laura Hudson with the South Carolina Crime Victims Council says the provider did not call for EMS or the family until hours after the incident.

On Your Side found 51 family child care home providers in our South Carolina viewing area. Only 14 have taken the course required under Kendra's Law.

"It's very shocking to me," Hudson said. "What really concerns me is does the public know that when they access one of those and they have not complied then they should probably not have their child there?"

Sandra Young of Wagner has operated her own home child care facility for nearly two decades. She is state certified (meaning she passed a background check) but is not in compliance with Kendra's Law.

"Well I know about it. It's just finding the time to get it done," Young said.

A loophole in the law may be the reason why so many providers are putting off the training. The law does not state who is in charge of enforcing the law and there is no set punishment for those in violation.

South Carolina Crime Victim's Council is working to add a statuary change to Kendra's Law. It would prevent family child care homes to register with DSS if they do not complete the training required under Kendra's Law.

Georgia requires their home providers to take 20 hours of training before they can even register as a provider.

Kendra's father, Patrick Gaddie, contacted News 12's Elizabeth Owens via Facebook concerning this story.

He posted: "OMG! Lack of accountability as usual! Who, who, who is letting this happen?! Business as usual in South Carolina; its not WHAT you know, its WHO you know.........at the expense of children. Absolutely ridiculous. "

You can find out if your family child care home provider is in compliance with Kendra's Law by searching providers on the South Carolina Department of Social Services' website.

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