Caulkins: Child Care Providers Can Reopen May 29

Governor Pritzker announced that child care providers can reopen May 29th thanks to political pressure from child care advocates and State Representative Dan Caulkins (R-Decatur), led by State Representative Margo McDermed (R-Mokena) and their House Republican colleagues.

“The shortage of child care providers began on the first day Governor Pritzker forced them to close two months ago,” said Rep. Caulkins. “With more people heading back to work next week, we knew it was critical for child care providers to reopen at the same time. I want to thank my colleague Rep. Margo McDermed for leading the charge. Otherwise child care providers could have remained closed for another month as written in Phase 4 of Pritzker’s plan.”

On May 15th, Representative Dan Caulkins and 27 other House Republican members sent a letter to Governor Pritzker, urging him to allow all Illinois child care providers to reopen as regions move to Phase 3. The reopening of childcare centers was previously listed as a Phase 4 item in Pritzker’s “Restore Illinois” plan. Today the Governor announced that all 5,500 of Illinois’ child care centers that were not deemed as “essential” may indeed reopen on May 29 when all four regions of the state move to Phase 3.

According to Governor Pritzker’s announcement today, “Newly reopened providers will have reduced capacity, of no more than 10 children per Illinois is encouraging all of the currently closed licensed child care providers to reopen when their Region moves to Phase 3 to serve the many families who will be returning to work. Those providers that have been closed and will reopen must develop a Reopening Plan that ensures they have revised operational and preparedness policies in place before opening.

These newly reopened providers will have reduced capacity, of no more than 10 children per classroom, for the first 4 weeks. Once they have provided care safely for four weeks and have followed the new health, social distancing, and sanitation routines and guidelines, they will be able to expand to larger group sizes, though not their full licensed capacity.”

Beginning Friday, May 29th, as outlined in Phase 3 of Governor Pritzker’s ‘Restore Illinois’ plan, the following can reopen; manufacturing, offices, retail, barbershops, and salons.