U to close its campus day care. Parents are not happy

The University of Minnesota will be closing its campus day care center in 18 months, the Star Tribune reports.

The decision was announced Monday in a letter to the parents of the roughly 140 children enrolled in the day care center. So far, the move has not been popular.

University of Minnesota political science professor Kathryn Pearson was one of the parents who got that letter. She spoke with MPR News host Cathy Wurzer, and said the closure came as a total shock.

"Parents, teachers, staff," she said. "We are all stunned. Outraged."

The university's Child Development Center was opened in 1974 to provide child care for faculty, staff and graduate students. Over the last 45 years, it has developed a strong reputation.

Pearson said there's a long waiting list.

"This center is excellent," she said. "It's used as a tool to recruit families that either have or plan to have young children."

In her recent letter to center parents, Jean Quam, dean of the College of Education and Human Development, said the closure will make room for expansions to the Shirley Moore Laboratory School.

The center will close in the summer of 2019, which Quam wrote, should give parents "enough time to evaluate and choose options without worrying about an immediate need."

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