OMAHA, Neb. (KMTV) - Premier Academy, a daycare center, is open and has been for nearly 10 years.
"We usually don't take school aged kids but because of this COVID situation, we're taking school aged children for parents that the kids aren't in school and they need to work,” said owner Christine Flaxbeard. “We're licensed to 6 weeks to 12 years but we try and limit it to 5 years."
In March when most businesses had to close, childcare centers were able to stay open as they were deemed essential. Since the pandemic, they've implemented new changes.
"It started at the beginning of the day,” Flaxbeard said. “We asked parents to drop off and pick up at the front door. That eliminates the number of adults or minimizes the number of adults in the center. We do time and temperature upon arrival for all children and staff. If a child has a temperature of 99 degrees or more, we ask the parent to keep the child home for 48 hours and until they are symptom free. Again, we limit the number of children in the classroom."
Beyond limiting the class sizes, Flaxbeard says they've met and exceeded the cleaning standards.
"We use a unit that sanitizes and disinfects anything from a crayon to a cot,” she said. “There's no chemicals involved, It uses the ozone layer, humidity, and time, to sanitize and disinfect, 99% of the viruses and bacteria that are out there. Now on their website, they mention that they have not been able to test for the COVID-19 virus, but they do know it killed 99% of the novo virus which is one of the hardest viruses to kill."
Both Premier Academy locations, which typically has 150 kids each, went down to at least 50 during the pandemic. But still, parents supported the center, which Flaxbeard says helped them continue to stay open
"They understood that we needed to keep the center open so they really partnered with us and most parents kept paying tuition, even if they chose to stay home, many parents did. And so that's been very helpful. And we're slowly starting to see them come back. And they knew that they needed a center to come back to,” Flaxbeard said.
3525 N. 147th St. Omaha, NE 68116
20111 Roberts St. Elkhorn, NE 68022
Monday - Friday: 6:30AM - 6PM