Park Forest daycare closes doors without notice - DC News FOX 5 DC WTTG

Park Forest daycare closes doors without notice

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CHICAGO (FOX 32 News) -

A daycare center in Park Forest suddenly closed its doors Monday morning.

Parents say they got a rude awakening when they tried to drop their kids off at the Children's House and employees say they were just as shocked.

"We found out this morning just as our parents did," says Daycare Director Anita Raspberry Strong.

The daycare closed for good. A sign on the door says it hopes to open up under new management. Employees didn't know they were out of a job, until they couldn't open the door.

"To walk in and not have a notice or anything about, you not being...no longer employed, it's hard," says Strong.

The news is even harder for Atina Wheatley. Not only did she work at the Children's House, but her daughter was in the program.

"It hurts because, one I don't have anywhere to take my daughter now and two, I don't have a job," Wheatley says. "So, I can't even afford child care anywhere else."

Twenty minutes north in Markham, employees received similar news. Their location will close next Thursday.

Parents, like Toni Prestwood, were shocked when they came to pick up their children.

"It's crazy because my daughter she went there ever since she was 1-year-old and now she's 11. So now our son's been going there ever since he was 1, so I don't know what I'm going to do," Prestwood says.

3-year-old Gavin and his parents will have to begin a tough and expensive search for child care.

"It's kind of sad because you get to know these people," Prestwood says. "I hate to see them close, but I think they could've forewarned us a little bit earlier."

FOX 32 News tried to contact daycare owner Phyllis Ward and her associates, but they did not return our calls.

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