The Franklinville day-care center where an infant girl died Wednesday was operated with "gross incompetence, negligence, and misconduct," and conditions there presented "serious danger to the life and health of the children" according to a state report issued Thursday.
As a consequence, the Pennsylvania Department of Human Services on Thursday shut down Sisters Childcare Center at 3539 Germantown Ave.
In the report, DHS investigators detailed more than a dozen violations at Sisters Childcare - including that no one at the facility on Wednesday had up-to-date training in first aid or cardiopulmonary resuscitation.
The report states that staff knew that the 10-month-old girl was not well when she was dropped off Wednesday morning, but nevertheless did not provide her with any "additional care or supervision" for hours afterward.
And when she became unresponsive that afternoon, no one called 911 or performed proper CPR, according to the report. Instead, a staffer attempted CPR while carrying the child to Temple University Hospital. She was pronounced dead on arrival at Temple.
Sisters Childcare's owner, Magnus Connor, could not be reached for comment Thursday. He can appeal the closure, but the center must remain closed in the meantime, state officials said.
Police have not yet released the girl's name, or the cause of death.
"Our hearts go out to the family on this profound loss, and our thoughts are with them," DHS spokeswoman Kait Gillis said in a statement.
The day care's closure, known as an "emergency removal," was effective immediately - "to help ensure the safety of the children in care" there, Gillis said.
The DHS report detailed 17 violations that officials found when they arrived to investigate the baby girl's death.
In addition to the staffers' deficient CPR training, state investigators found that two of the staffers working at the facility Wednesday did not have proper security clearances.
The report also said that too few caretakers were looking after too many children: only four staffers were present to see to 39 children. State regulations require one staffer for every four children.
The report found that the center's walls and vents were dirty and covered in dust.
Investigators also discovered that the staff did not have emergency contacts on file for the child, and were only able to get in touch with her family by calling a relative's cellphone.
DHS employees were trying to contact the families of children who attended Sisters Childcare, Gillis said. DHS officials will be at the day care Friday morning to speak with families and help them find new child care options.
In July, the facility was found to be out of compliance with 24 state regulations. Afterward, the day care corrected some violations and provided the state with a plan to correct others.
Business owners at nearby shops Germantown Avenue said the center had been a presence for years. Day-care employees walking rows of children up and down the sidewalk were a familiar sight.
A woman who works at a beauty shop down the street said she had sent her 4-year-old son to Sisters Childcare for about a year because it was convenient to her job. She said she was trying to withhold judgment on the death until more details were clear. The woman, who declined to give her name, said she had never noticed any problems there, and was surprised to hear of its regulatory woes.
The July report from state investigators also detailed issues with employees' security clearances, and inappropriate employee-to-child ratios. Some staff members did not know the names of the children they were caring for, according to state records, and one was observed yelling at children.
The mother who spoke to The Inquirer on Thursday said she had spent half an hour on the phone that morning, trying to determine whether the facility would be open for the day.
No one ever answered, she said, and she sent her son to a babysitter.
email@example.com 215-854-2961 @aubreyjwhelan