Enchanted Child Care allowed to reopen two locations

The Enchanted Child Care Center on Dietz Avenue Northeast is being allowed to reopen after the owner agreed to step aside as operator and director of child care. One of the businesses’ Salem locations is also allowed to reopen under an agreement with state officials.

Two Enchanted Child Care locations are being permitted to reopen days after accusations of child mistreatment were brought to light.

Under an agreement reached with state officials, Enchanted Child Care on Dietz Avenue in Keizer and a second location in Salem are both being permitted to resume care. The owner, Michelle Long, had to agree to step aside as operator and and director of the centers before state officials agreed to allow the reopening. Long is not allowed to be present at the facilities when children in care are present and cannot take part in direct caregiving.

A new operator and director of services has been appointed.

As part of the agreement:

• Children will be allowed to leave nap mats and provided a quiet activity when they are unable to fall asleep. They will also be permitted to use restrooms during nap times. This action is in response to allegations that children were being kept from using restroom during nap times even if they were not asleep. At least one child reported pain as a result of being kept from relieving themselves. At least two children were kept on nap mats in urine-soaked clothing after wetting themselves during the two-hour allotted nap time.

• Adequate food supplies will be procured to serve meals designated on menus provided to parents. The centers had been accused of not providing menu items displayed for parents and not recording substitutions.

• Proper amounts of paper towels and disposable cups will be available. This is a response to charges that Enchanted facilities ran out of paper towels frequently and forced children to reuse disposable cups that were supposed to be disposed of during the pandemic crisis to stop the spread of COVID-19.

• Reports of serious injuries must be made to Office of Child Care at the Oregon Department of Education and parents must be informed of injuries sustained while in care.

The agreement does not address the other accusations of harsh discipline and ridicule – deemed valid by state officials – during an investigation by state authorities that led to Long losing her license to provide child care during the pandemic.

That investigation concluded Long had “demonstrated behavior that has a detrimental effect on children, and should not have access to child care children.”