Coronation Park Day Nursery has been given a three-week reprieve.
Lambton County councillors agreed last week to postpone a decision on closing the popular but money-losing facility until June 4.
County staff have advised shutting down the Oak Avenue day care because it’s running a $1.1-million deficit.
But a coalition of staff and parents quickly came together when word of the recommendation broke. They’re upset that councillors were ready to vote May 8 before closure had been debated or alternatives explored.
Sarnia Mayor Mike Bradley has said the layoff of 40 staff would have a “profound impact” on workers, parents and the city.
The problem is a 10% decline in child-care funding from Ontario and relatively high staffing costs. The move to full-day junior kindergarten has also shifted many children to schools, leaving day cares with more expensive to care for infants and toddlers.
A confidential report prepared for county council urged a quick decision so the centre can be shut down by Sept. 1.
Built in 1972, Coronation Park has licensed day care for 94 children to age six, as well as a Best Start Hub, satellite programs and before and after class support for Queen Elizabeth II and St. Benedict school students.