Calgary daycare shuttered due to cockroach, mouse infestation

A Calgary daycare, shutdown by AHS, due to cockroaches and mouse droppings has re-opened leaving many questioning the safety of the facility. Silvia Naranjo reports.

By Alejandro Melgar, Nadia Moharib

Cockroaches and mouse droppings were found at a southwest Calgary daycare, prompting health officials to shut it down.

Sun Valley Kids Academy and Montessori has been temporarily shuttered to deal with 21 breaches of various acts, including the Public Health Act, revealed during a recent Alberta Health Services (AHS) inspection Wednesday.

AHS tells CityNews in an email a member of the public made a complaint about the facility, leading to the inspection.

“This inspection revealed a significant infestation of mice and cockroaches in the daycare, and unsanitary conditions overall,” said AHS spokesperson Diana Rinne.

The facility was closed on Feb. 6 for “immediate action” to be taken at the daycare and remained closed with a formal notice on Feb. 8.

The report on the AHS website states inspectors say the current conditions “are or may become injurious or dangerous to the public health.”

Among the findings were several live and dead cockroaches in the kitchen food prep area, including in the fridge and under the sink.

AHS says mouse droppings were observed throughout the facility, including on the carpet near the napping area, next to the play kitchen, near the diaper cabinet in the senior toddler room, and around the cabinet “beside the handwashing sink in the preschool room and near children’s baskets in the kindergarten room.”

“Mouse droppings were in contact with children’s toys and personal items, including bite marks and droppings observed on foam toys in the baby room,” the report reads.

The extensive list of violations also includes no hand soap at the kitchen sink nor an approved food-safe sanitizer solution, broken or damaged or missing equipment, and dirty equipment and surfaces seen throughout the facility with inspectors stating that “staff demonstrated a lack of food safety knowledge.”

“This facility will remain closed until appropriate pest mitigation strategies and thorough cleaning and disinfection have been put into place by the daycare operator, and a reinspection by AHS has been completed. There have been no reported illnesses linked to this investigation to date.”

The 24 tasks the facility must complete include getting a pest control operator to “eliminate the cockroach and mouse infestation” and to have a pest management plan monthly.

CityNews has reached out to Sun Valley Kids Montessori for comment.

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