News

Ocracoke Child Care closes

Ocracoke Child Care Inc.

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Ocracoke Child Care has closed after a year-long unsuccessful search for classroom teachers, Director DeAnna Locke has announced.

While the official closing date was May 22, Locke said she hopes the center can re-open in the future with some innovative programs, but nothing has been decided yet.

“This decision was not made before we had exhausted every possibility we could think of,” Locke said.

For the last several months, the center has needed a minimum of two full-time teachers although it remained open with one fulltime teacher in the infant/toddler room and Locke working both as a classroom teacher and the director

“We have advertised extensively and have aggressively recruited locally and throughout our state,” she said.  “We offered a competitive salary and necessary support for required continuing education and training. I used lots of the center’s limited resources to begin the hiring process for over a dozen potential teachers, who did not end up working for us.”

Locke said she talked with about 75 people about job opportunities here but could not find two people to work.

Early-childcare workers in North Carolina are required to have background checks, a physical, CPR certification and certain other training.

Finding affordable housing adds to the complications of anyone working on Ocracoke.
The center had closed in August 2015 after a continuing problem with scabies and reopened in March 2016 with Locke as the new director.

Since that time, while enrollment increased to the point of having a waiting list of children, they could not be accommodated because of the teacher shortage, Locke said.

 

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