MEMPHIS, Tenn. — A daycare where a one-year-old died after being left in a hot vehicle has officially closed its doors.
The state of Tennessee says Education is the Key Childcare in North Memphis surrendered its license. Wednesday morning, the doors were locked, the parking lot was empty, and the playground was untouched.
A “For Sale” sign was seen taped to the window of the daycare van.
This comes after Memphis Police say a one-year-old was left in a car for more than six hours during 80-degree weather last week. The boy died at the hospital.
Police said an employee picked up the child on their way to work and forgot the infant was in the car.
The Tennessee Department of Human Services has opened an investigation.
The state said Education is the Key was first licensed in February 2017 and had received no violations since opening. The agency has surrendered its child care license Monday and is now closed.
“It wasn’t the daycare itself. It was just the person being neglectful and not looking in her surroundings,” said Colette Blackwell, who lives in the area and said she’d had personal experience with the school.
“Honestly, my grand babies went to that daycare and after school care, and It was no neglect on that part. I love that school. They taught them well there,” she said.
A spokeswoman with the Tennessee Department of Human Services said that although the person involved in the situation was approved to transport children, the specific vehicle involved was not.
Blackwell said the school’s closure will now leave a hole in the community for those needing childcare.
“That’s the only daycare around in this area unless you have to go, like, in Frayser,” she said.
We called the number associated with the daycare for comment. A woman answered the phone, but she immediately hung up.
As of Wednesday, no charges have been filed in the incident.
We reached out to the DA’s office for an explanation:
“This case is still under investigation so we cannot comment at this time, but with summer upon us it is a deadly reminder of the serious responsibility involved in caring for small children, the most vulnerable of our citizens,” District Attorney General Amy Weirich said.