Local Childcare programs react to reopening date and government guidelines

BOWLING GREEN, Ky. (WBKO) -- One of the areas we know is critical to reopening the economy is childcare.

Governor Andy Beshear moved the opening date up for some daycare centers. In-home day cares can open June 8, while larger centers can open June 15.

Local childcare centers in Bowling Green say they're eager to open up their doors.

While childcare centers have been given the green light to re-open, there will be strict government guidelines they must follow.

"Adults need to wear masks and children, age appropriate, should wear masks as well. Within facilities we're going to ask that children under five not be required to wear masks," said Cabinet of Health and Family Services Sec. Eric Friedlander.

"How exactly can we implement what they're asking us to do?" said Smart Start Child Care Owner Paul Isenberg.

Gov. Beshear said daycare centers will be allowed to unlock their doors on June 15, in-home day cares can open June 8, but he added there will be "significant requirements," including keeping children in small groups, and keeping the groups separate from one another.

"They're trying to keep you with the same groups, the're trying to keep you with the same people, the same teachers so if there was an outbreak if someone did contract COVID-19 that we're able to quickly quarantine that group."

Facilities will have a maximum classroom size of ten children. Playground time will be scattered and there will be no field trips or family events

Cleanliness is key for children, so many many childcare centers are ready to take on the extra cleaning measures laid out by the state, but it's hard to be ready for everything.

"Definitely am feeling the pressure from trying to figure out how we can stay within balance of those guidelines. Although we're not looking forward to having new requirements already on top of an industry that's regulated so heavy, we're definitely excited to get back to what we consider our family," Isenberg said.

He says one of the most important elements in reopening is preparation for not only the facilities, but for the children.

"Make sure your kids are prepared to see teachers in masks, make sure your kids are prepared to wash their hands more often, make sure your kids are prepared to do what they can do. And to the parents, we just all have to work together as a community. I do feel confident that COVID-19 is here to stay so we have to be prepared to address it have to be prepared to look out for it, we have to be prepared for how we are going to handle it if we do see it and then take those actions and protocols to help the spread get down and to help whomever does contact it, be healthy."

For a complete list of the guidlelines click here.