Parents Upset With Decision to Close Student Parent Center

5 years 8 months 3 weeks ago Wednesday, March 12 2014 Mar 12, 2014 Wednesday, March 12, 2014 1:05:00 PM CDT March 12, 2014 in News
By: Alexandra Pierce, KOMU 8 Reporter
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COLUMBIA - The University of Missouri Chancellor R. Bowen Loftin announced Wednesday the University Village Apartment Complex and Student Parent Center will close June 30 and be demolished shortly after.

Loftin will ask MSA, GPC and other campus organizations to begin discussing the possibility of a child day care center on the MU campus in the future.  Loftin didn't give a set timeline for the possibility of this new program.

Some parents are not happy with the decision to close the day care and wonder why one hasn't been made earlier.

Currently, the center cares for 29 children, 16 of which are student's children.

The Student Parent Center was created in 1974 to accommodate students who are also parents.  The center was originally funded by student fees. Since then, as a way to keep fees at an affordable rate for parent-students, MU has been using additional student fee funds to subsidize the operations of the center.

University spokesman Christian Basi said MU can now use the money that was going toward the day care center for other projects the university needs to work on.

"That funding will now be used for additional deffered matienence projects that have been not been able to get to as well as other academic priorities," Basi said. 

"It's important to note that even though we have made this decision, the facilities have been declared safe by licensed, professional engineers," Loftin said. 

Parents can still bring their children to the Student Parent Center until it closes but some are now making alternative plans.

"We will provide assistance to any students who are looking for alternative housing, as well as provide resources to those parents searching for child care," said Cathy Scroggs, vice chancellor for student affairs.

This past Friday a petition was started urging MU to ensure the Student Parent Center be moved to a new safe location on campus.

Kimberly Bodner, a doctoral psychology student at MU, started the petition after she pulled her four-month-old son from attending the day care.

She says that even after the university's decision to close University Village she hopes her petition will still be heard.

There is no set timeline for when MU will begin discussions on relocating the Student Parent Center but Basi says he expects it to be before the demolition.

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