Checking In With Susan Koeppen: As More Parents Work From Home, More Daycare Centers Remain Shuttered

PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — Before the pandemic, Milestones Child Care Center in Regent Square had 50 children enrolled, a full staff of teachers and it was a hub for learning and activity.


“It was wonderful,” says owner, Laura Minnock. “We were at capacity. We had a waitlist out at least a year and a half.”


But, COVID-19 shut down the facility.


When Minnock reached out to her families about re-opening on June 1, only five to six families said they were ready to return. Many parents said they are still working from home, and they want to keep their children home, as well.


“I think everyone is really nervous and just wants to see medically and logistically in a social distancing way how child care can work before they are ready to commit,” says Minnock.


Growing concern over how COVID-19 is affecting children is giving families pause.


Minnock, who’s been in business for more than 20 years, fears some daycare facilities might close.


“You work really hard and you build a business and to watch it in the blink of an eye disappear is definitely a sobering reality,” she said.


Minnock says she will weather the storm and hopes to have her teachers and students back in July or August.