TARGET 8: Missouri-- The state of unlicensed summer camps

1 year 2 months 17 hours ago Wednesday, August 17 2016 Aug 17, 2016 Wednesday, August 17, 2016 11:05:00 PM CDT August 17, 2016 in Target 8
By: Megan Judy, KOMU 8 Anchor
loading

COLUMBIA — It’s back to school time, but during the summer, it’s a constant chess match for parents. The big question: where to put your kids during the work day. It’s safe to say summer camps are a staple in most households.

But, you may not realize summer camps in the state of Missouri don’t have to be licensed and do not require criminal background checks. Summer day camps don’t face the same regulations other childcare facilities face. It’s an issue that caught the attention of one Columbia family, the Gelnars.

Kelley and Dwaine Gelnar ran into a childcare problem during the summer and decided to put their kids in a gymnastics day camp. Unfortunately, their seven-year-old son Ethan was injured while playing.

“I needed childcare just for one day… it was highly recommended, it was inexpensive and it looked like it would be really fun,” said Kelley Gelnar. Ethan’s dad, Dwaine said, “They said Ethan had been feeling bad all afternoon and he had taken a nap. When I walked in, he was laying down and he looked pretty miserable. So, we took him to the hospital. Docs determined he had a severe concussion and a fractured wrist -- two bones fractured in his wrist.”

 The Gelnars said they understand accidents can happen anywhere. But, they took issue with the fact they weren’t notified immediately of their son’s injuries.

The Department of Social Services Children’s Division found the camp where Ethan was hurt, not guilty of any wrongdoing. However, the owner explained she’s personally implemented changes the agent suggested. She said her staff now attend twice-daily meetings to go over safety protocol. Also, they give parents a handout detailing the day’s activities and a detailed explanation of how to communicate in case of an emergency. The owner made these changes even though she isn’t required to do so by law.

 Summer camps in the state of Missouri are exempt from needing licenses as long as the summer camp is “conducted in good faith primarily to provide education, recreation… for children.”

Representative Stephen Webber, a Democrat from Columbia, is working with the Gelnars and wants to change the lack of oversight, but wouldn’t go as far as regulating camps in the same way as daycare facilities.

Webber said, “I think initially the legislature wanted to keep summer camps accessible. I mean it’s important that children have access to summer camps. So, I think the idea was accessibility. What we’re saying is that accessibility should probably be balanced with making sure children are safe.”

Webber said, “As of now, there’s no set ratio of children to adults and there’s no requirements that summer camps have any sort of medical training or any sort of medical staff available."

He plans to propose legislation when the next session starts in January. “I would like to propose some legislation so that parents have some degree of comfort when sending children to summer camps,” Webber said.

He said he thinks it’s important “that there’s somebody around who has some degree of medical training, that the ratio of children to adults is something reasonable.”

If you’d like to read the statute that exempts summer camps from licenses, you can find a link right here. http://www.moga.mo.gov/mostatutes/stathtml/21000002111.html

Missouri is one of only eleven states in the country that doesn’t require licenses for day camps.

Here’s the breakdown from the American Camp Association:

Alabama - Y

Alaska - Y

Arizona - Y

Arkansas - Y

California - N

Colorado - Y

Connecticut - Y

Delaware - N

Florida - Y

Georgia - N

Hawaii - Y

Idaho - Y

Illinois - Y

Indiana - N

Iowa - Y

Kansas - Y

Kentucky - Y

Louisiana - Y

Maine - Y

Maryland - Y

Massachusetts- Y

Michigan - Y

Minnesota - N

MIssissippi - Y

Missouri - N

Montana - N

Nebraska - Y

Nevada - Y

New Hampshire - Y

New Jersey - N

New Mexico - Y

New York - Y

North Carolina - Y

North Dakota - N

Ohio - Y

Oklahoma - Y

Oregon - Y

Pennsylvania - Y

Rhode Island - Y

South Carolina - Y

South Dakota - N

Tennessee - Y

Texas - Y

Utah - Y

Vermont - N

Virginia - Y

Washington - Y

West Virginia - Y

Wisconsin - Y

Wyoming - Y

More News

Grid
List
COLUMBIA - After an active threat on MU’s campus, some are disappointed with the MU Alert system and question its... More >>
27 minutes ago Wednesday, October 18 2017 Oct 18, 2017 Wednesday, October 18, 2017 6:51:00 PM CDT October 18, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA - The Downtown Leadership Council met Tuesday to decide how to spend fees paid by developers to compensate businesses... More >>
1 hour ago Wednesday, October 18 2017 Oct 18, 2017 Wednesday, October 18, 2017 5:33:00 PM CDT October 18, 2017 in News
SPRINGFIELD (AP) — An Arkansas man who made bomb threats to a county courthouse in Missouri so his court hearing... More >>
2 hours ago Wednesday, October 18 2017 Oct 18, 2017 Wednesday, October 18, 2017 4:31:00 PM CDT October 18, 2017 in News
MOBERLY - Police arrested a man Tuesday on suspicion of more than a dozen crimes, including rape, statutory rape, sodomy,... More >>
3 hours ago Wednesday, October 18 2017 Oct 18, 2017 Wednesday, October 18, 2017 3:31:00 PM CDT October 18, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA - Six years after being one of the first 16 schools to incorporate the Coulter Awards, MU has become... More >>
4 hours ago Wednesday, October 18 2017 Oct 18, 2017 Wednesday, October 18, 2017 3:14:00 PM CDT October 18, 2017 in News
JEFFERSON CITY (AP) — A judge has fined a central Missouri prosecutor more than $12,000 for failing to provide records... More >>
4 hours ago Wednesday, October 18 2017 Oct 18, 2017 Wednesday, October 18, 2017 2:52:00 PM CDT October 18, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA – Rep. Vicky Hartzler, (R)-Missouri, presented a new piece of legislation she says is aimed at getting more people... More >>
4 hours ago Wednesday, October 18 2017 Oct 18, 2017 Wednesday, October 18, 2017 2:24:00 PM CDT October 18, 2017 in News
SPRINGFIELD (AP) — A new report sheds light physical confrontations between a Missouri hospital's staff and patients that put the... More >>
5 hours ago Wednesday, October 18 2017 Oct 18, 2017 Wednesday, October 18, 2017 2:13:00 PM CDT October 18, 2017 in News
MOUNTAIN VIEW (AP) — Authorities have confirmed that remains found in March in southern Missouri are a woman who has... More >>
5 hours ago Wednesday, October 18 2017 Oct 18, 2017 Wednesday, October 18, 2017 2:08:00 PM CDT October 18, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA- The MU community made its voice heard Wednesday, laying out the characteristics, qualities and experiences it's looking for in... More >>
5 hours ago Wednesday, October 18 2017 Oct 18, 2017 Wednesday, October 18, 2017 1:20:00 PM CDT October 18, 2017 in News
BOONE COUNTY -As the U.S. House starts working on the 2018 Farm Bill, mid-Missouri's congressional representative talked with agricultural producers... More >>
7 hours ago Wednesday, October 18 2017 Oct 18, 2017 Wednesday, October 18, 2017 12:16:00 PM CDT October 18, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA - VALOR pulled into the parking lot at Welcome Home on Wednesday, ready to fill the organization's need for... More >>
7 hours ago Wednesday, October 18 2017 Oct 18, 2017 Wednesday, October 18, 2017 12:06:00 PM CDT October 18, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA - Police have found the person connected to the alert at MU, and have taken that person into custody.... More >>
7 hours ago Wednesday, October 18 2017 Oct 18, 2017 Wednesday, October 18, 2017 12:02:00 PM CDT October 18, 2017 in News
NAPA, Calif. (AP) — Authorities have identified the firefighter who was killed when the water transport truck he was driving... More >>
21 hours ago Tuesday, October 17 2017 Oct 17, 2017 Tuesday, October 17, 2017 9:49:00 PM CDT October 17, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA - In a quiet building tucked behind brick facades and looming trees off Vandiver Drive, the 2018 midterm election... More >>
23 hours ago Tuesday, October 17 2017 Oct 17, 2017 Tuesday, October 17, 2017 8:04:00 PM CDT October 17, 2017 in News
JEFFERSON CITY (AP) — U.S. Sen. Claire McCaskill says she didn't object to a bill weakening federal authority to stop... More >>
1 day ago Tuesday, October 17 2017 Oct 17, 2017 Tuesday, October 17, 2017 7:12:00 PM CDT October 17, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA – The Community Land Trust Organization Board is set to meet Wednesday to discuss further developments on the Lynn... More >>
1 day ago Tuesday, October 17 2017 Oct 17, 2017 Tuesday, October 17, 2017 7:11:00 PM CDT October 17, 2017 in News
JEFFERSON CITY (AP) — Missouri's unemployment has dropped slightly. Department of Economic Development data released Tuesday show the unemployment... More >>
1 day ago Tuesday, October 17 2017 Oct 17, 2017 Tuesday, October 17, 2017 7:08:32 PM CDT October 17, 2017 in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 64°
8pm 63°
9pm 61°
10pm 60°
11pm 58°

Select a station to view its upcoming schedule:

Coming Up Next

7:00p
The Blacklist
8:00p
Law & Order: Special Victims Unit
9:00p
Chicago P.D.
7:00p
Riverdale
8:00p
Dynasty
9:00p
KOMU 8 News @ Nine on The CW

Tonight's Schedule

7:00p
The Blacklist
8:00p
Law & Order: Special Victims Unit
9:00p
Chicago P.D.
7:00p
Riverdale
8:00p
Dynasty
9:00p
KOMU 8 News @ Nine on The CW
9:30p
Seinfeld