Several of the privately operated day-care centers that lease surplus classroom space in Montgomery County elementary schools have had to relocate to other schools because of increases in regular school enrollment, a school system spokesman said.
Operators of centers at Glenallen, College Gardens, Twinbrook, Galway and Bannockburn elementary schools have been told to find new locations for their businesses, which serve about 250 children, some of them all day and others before and after regular classes. The county has been leasing out space since 1978 for $100 to $150 a classroom a month. Most of the centers have been offered the opportunity to lease surplus space in other, nearby schools, school system officials said.
The county leases surplus rooms to private groups and about 50 day-care operators, who charge an average of $65 a week for all-day care of a child.
Robert Posilkin, the coordinator of joint occupancy for the Montgomery County School District, said that while the county and the school district have attempted to find a new home for Joytown, one center that is having difficulty relocating from the Glenallen school, the responsibility for relocation does not lie with the county.
"We seek to help because we believe the need does exist for the day-care centers. But we're not obligated to find them a new space; our duties don't include child-care," Posilkin said.
Linda McLean, the coordinator of the center at Twinbrook in Rockville, said she received the run-around from the school district and that finding a new location has been a "hassle."
McLean must move because the Twinbrook school is being closed for a year of renovation. While the students of Twinbrook will attend nearby Northlake school, the day-care program will operate at Meadow Hall elementary in Rockville. Students attending Northlake and the after-school center will have to be bused by the county, McLean said.