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Suspended Southfield child care center has two locations, recently changed directors

Posted at 6:20 PM, Mar 12, 2019
and last updated 2019-03-12 18:20:02-04

SOUTHFIELD, Mich. (WXYZ) — Monday, Michigan’s Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs (LARA) pulled the license of a Southfield child care center, following allegations of staff misconduct.

According to a complaint, a staff member at ABC Early Learning Center on Telegraph Road on two separate occasions poked a child with a thumb tack.

According to the state, another employee filmed some of the alleged behavior and reported it.

ABC Early Learning Center staff is accused of lying to LARA about their knowledge of the incident, and failing to report it.

State rules dictate that once a license is suspended or revoked, the licensee is prohibited from operating at any location.

7 Action News heard from parents that ABC had a second location; on Southfield Road.

Tuesday, that facility was open.

According to the child care center’s website, which states it has two locations, the Southfield facility is called ABC Early Learning Center South, while the now-closed Telegraph Road location is ABC Early Learning Center North.

ABC South staff told told 7 Action News it has no affiliation with the other ABC location.

However, according to the state, the facilities once shared a program director, Rhonda Draper-Brown. Ms. Brown, who was cited in the official complaint against ABC North, was just recently removed from the ABC South location.

A LARA spokesperson explained the two facilities have different operating licenses. ABC North operated under Brown Investment Group, while ABC South operates under Brown Educational Services.

“Since summarily suspending the child care license of Brown Investment Group, LARA and Brown Educational Services LLC have agreed on a corrective action plan that removes Rhonda Draper-Brown as the licensee designee at the facility at 21100 Southfield. A new licensee designee has replaced Rhonda Draper-Brown at 21100 Southfield,” a LARA spokesperson said via email.

ABC South rents space out of First Baptist Church. Rev. Theodore Turman told 7 Action News the allegations against ABC North are concerning.

“We’ve been in conversation with our legal counsel. We’re still trying to ascertain all of the facts of the case,” he said regarding ABC South.

“They continue today to rent space from us. And again as we continue to get more understanding and direction from the state and again from our legal counsel on how we should proceed, that can change.”