Parents meet with MU chancellor over fate of daycare

Student Parent Center meeting with MU chancellor

COLUMBIA, Mo. - The future of the Student Parent Center daycare at University Village could be decided in just a few weeks.

Parents of the daycare met with Chancellor Bowen Loftin Tuesday to give him their petition to save the daycare, as well as hear what the university feels about saving the daycare.

The daycare is set to close with the rest of University Village on June 30 and be demolished shortly after because it was found unsafe without major repairs after a walkway collapse killed Columbia firefighter Lt. Bruce Britt.

Right now, Chancellor Loftin has several groups on campus determining the need of a student parent daycare center to see if it should re-open somewhere else.  He also has staff looking into costs of renovating an existing building into a daycare versus opening a new facility.

"I hope he considers the cost of a new center plus the cost of losing the daycare all together," Naomi Clark, a parent at the daycare, said.

Another student parent agreed.

"There are capital costs and operating costs but hopefully they'll also weigh the importance to student parents which is less quantifiable," Christopher Englehardt said.

Parents said they felt reassured finding out Loftin had once been in their sitation.

"I have experience being a married graduate student with two kids," Loftin said.

"The chancellor assured us he's been in our situation as a studenting parent and he's wanting to do what he can for us," Clark said.

But nothing will be decided until the groups gather their data and return their findings to the chancellor.  He said they have until April 30 to turn their results in.

As of right now, the university hasn't decided what to do with the land the complex is currently on once it is torn down.

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