Loudoun County’s Rust and Ashburn libraries are reopened to the public; the Board of Supervisors (BOS) had decided to use the libraries as child care facilities but then backtracked.
“I think two things occurred. One was they initially had a lot of pushback about the libraries but they went ahead with it anyway. And so following that there actually wasn’t very much interest in that program, or at least not enough to use the library,” Geary Higgins, chair for the Republican Party of Virginia’s 10th district, told The Virginia Star.
“So between the pushback they got from parents both in the beginning and along the way, and the fact that they didn’t really need the facilities, they decided to go ahead and make them accessible to the public,” Higgins said.
Julie Sisson, former candidate for the Loudoun County Public School Board, told The Star, “I think one, they were too late in getting the daycare program launched, and two, it’s too expensive. People made other arrangements by the time this went live. So now they don’t need all the space they’d planned based on the survey responses.”
Loudoun County Public Affairs and Communications Officer Glen Barbour said although the libraries are open to the public again, they are still configured to be used for child care, pending a finalized decision from the BOS on Tuesday evening. The BOS will consider capping the program at 600 children, eliminating a need for the capacity at the libraries. Reducing the capacity to 600 students will also allow for lower costs for parents while staying within the funding available to the county through the CARES act. The monthly price for full-day child care would drop from $1,005 to $690. The meeting had not concluded by 11 p.m. Tuesday.
Higgins said he spoke with some County officials on Tuesday evening. “They said that there was a lot of pushback from parents, even up until recently, so I don’t think they’ll go back the other way. Now that the libraries are open, people will go back to trying to get the schools open.”
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