Second complaint filed against Kiddie Academy day care in Brighton

Parent alleges lack of supervision, accountability

BRIGHTON, Colo. - For the second time in two months, a complaint has been lodged against Kiddie Academy day care of Brighton.

Last week, Academy officials acknowledged that the Adams County Department of Human Services was investigating the day care center for an incident that allegedly occurred in March.

Neither the Academy, nor Human Services officials would elaborate on the allegations.

7NEWS learned Tuesday that another parent filed a complaint with the Department of Human Services on Monday, alleging a lack of supervision.

"I feel that my child isn’t safe," April Crawford told 7NEWS.

Crawford showed a picture of her daughter still suffering from black eyes.

"She fell on the concrete and hit her face," Crawford said. "She also fell off the Jungle Gym and bruised her ribs."

The Brighton mom said she didn’t learn about the injuries until she went to pick her daughter up.

"I confronted the owner about why I wasn't called about the injury," Crawford said. "She said it wasn't severe enough to warrant a call to her mother."

Crawford said that wasn’t the only time her daughter was injured at the Academy.

"On April 11, I received a call from the owner stating that my child had been bitten by another child on the arm," Crawford said. "The accident report states she was bitten by this boy because she touched his foot."

"There’s no supervision going on," Crawford told 7NEWS. "They’re more concerned with talking on their cell phones."

Crawford said she knows that children fall and get into tussles, but she said the last straw was when she and her mother watched staff members via a "watch us" webcam inside the academy.

"The teacher grabbed her and yanked her off the floor and drug her across the room to the other kids,"
said Gwen Estreich, Crawford's mom.

When asked her reaction to the video, Crawford said, "I was outraged."

Kiddie Academy issued this statement late Tuesday in response to a query about supervision and accountability issues.

It is important to us that we maintain open lines of communication with our families. With regard to this situation, we followed established policies and procedures in terms of informing the family of the incidents that took place. We understand that no family wants to be informed that their child has been hurt.  Unfortunately, even with appropriate levels of supervision, when children are playing together these incidents can happen very quickly and quite often without warning. Kiddie Academy of Brighton exceeds Colorado’s licensing requirements for teacher-to-student ratios. In the classroom we are discussing, our ratio is two teachers per twenty students. Staff members are not permitted to have their cell phones with them when on duty in the classrooms or on the playground. The WatchMeGrow platform is in place to not only provide our families with a sense of security regarding the daily activities of their child, but it also provides us with ongoing training and coaching opportunities for our staff members  to ensure that they are performing to our high standards.

Cindy Vigesaa/Franchisee, Kiddie Academy Brighton, CO


In an attempt to put the allegations into context, 7NEWS asked the Department of Human Services how many complaints are filed against an average day care center, and how many of them prove to be unfounded.

So far, 7NEWS has received no response from the agency.

Brighton Police did acknowledge that they investigated a specific teacher at the academy on the earlier allegation, but wouldn't go into detail.

When asked if it involved hitting, inappropriate touching or neglect, police department spokesman John Bradley would only say it was more than neglect.

"We found nothing substantiated with the criminal allegation, so the investigation is inactive," Bradley said.

The Department of Human Services continues its original investigation.

There’s no word on whether it will open a second investigation following this latest complaint.

Crawford said the person she spoke to at the Department of Human Services "told me they were going to make an unannounced visit."

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