Dozens of parents in Arlington, Virginia, are scrambling to find child care for their children after learning their day care will soon shut down.
Parents told News4 they were shocked to find out on Thursday that the KinderCare facility in Clarendon would close on June 5 so a development project, which has been in the works since 2017, can begin.
KinderCare's corporate offices told the facility's director and teachers at the day care about the closing only a few days before parents were notified, according to parents who attended a meeting about the issue Tuesday night.
“The issue is that the people making the decisions did a really terrible job communicating," said parent Steven Krieger, who is running for the Arlington County School Board. "When ... the response from corporate is to not tell anybody, and then spring it on us at the last minute, even though they knew about it for months and, arguably, years -- people are really, really annoyed."
The closure affects about 100 families.
“I wasn’t very pleased with the responses I heard. It didn't seem like they were very prepared for what they heard from the parents today," parent Asif Siddiqui told News4 after the meeting.
Parents are now trying to find alternative child care options in a very tight market. There are only enough childcare slots in Arlington to serve about 55 percent of all kids under 5, according to a county report released in fall.
By phone, News4 spoke to Shaylee Carmona, who looked long and hard before placing her now 18-month-old here.
"Most child care facilities in Arlington have at least a six-month waitlist," Carmona said. "Some have two-year waitlists."
KinderCare released a statement Monday saying they tried to keep parents informed.
“We notified all families right away. Since that time, we’ve been hard at work to do everything we can to help our families find new child care options, including in existing and soon-to-open KinderCare centers in the Arlington and D.C. metro area.”
Some parents told News4 that moving their children to other KinderCare locations isn't reasonable because of distance and cost.