DeKalb County

Day cares and preschools reopen soon, but will parents send their kids?

DEKALB COUNTY, Ga. — As more and more parents get back to work, childcare is a big concern.

Many parents are also wondering what will happened with pre-K and when it will start.

Channel 2′s Tyisha Fernandes was in DeKalb County, where one YMCA never closed its doors

Many YMCAs and other licensed child care facilities kept their doors open for children of medical workers and other parents who had to keep working. But now that everyone is returning to work in some capacity, Fernandes asked state officials what childcare would look like as COVID numbers continue to rise.

[RELATED: FULL LIST: What cities are requiring face masks?]

Parents have until August to register their children for any licensed child care facilities, whether it’s before- and after-school programs, preschool or pre-K.

“We are very early in the process, but beginning next week, we’ll be contacting all the directors for the Georgia pre-K programs and asking them which models they prefer,” Reg Griffin with the Department of Early Care Learning said.

Options include full-time face-to-face learning with strict social distancing guidelines, or a hybrid model that includes virtual learning too.

Parents that Fernandes spoke to, who didn't want to be on camera, said they just don't see young children abiding by hardly any of the state guidelines on social distancing.

[RELATED: Cobb County schools to require face masks, school board member says]

"I personally will not be sending my baby," one parent told Fernandes. "It's a community-based program and it typically services low-income people, and I think out of ignorance and not knowing, people are doing things."

State official said at least 35 people within child care facilities have tested positive for COVID-19.

Parents are worried they might not be told about exposure right away.

Officials said that so far, directors at their facilities are handling the cases properly by notifying their public health agency and letting parents know what's going on.

Still state officials want to hear from parents who have specific concerns.

"They can contact us and we can do an investigation to find out what is going on and make sure health and state regulations are me," Griffin said.

State officials hope to have a solid plan in place by early August, but admit it’s difficult to do when the coronavirus data keeps changing.