ABC News reported yesterday that, “A teacher at a Morgan Hill, Calif., preschool has been arrested after the school accused her of slipping sleeping pills in sippy cups of children under the age of two.” The school commented, “We do not know the quantity, but we believe she was breaking the pill into smaller pieces and putting it into the children’s sippy cups, Morgan Hill Sgt. of Investigations Troy Hoefling told ABC News.”
According to Whas11.com, The school told ABC News it had “terminated” Debbie Gratz, 59, last Friday “for failure to follow Kiddie Academy standards and processes. “ “Ms. Gratz was witnessed adding a substance to the water cups for her classroom of 10 children, Morgan Hill Kiddie Academy added in a prepared statement. “The cups were confiscated before they came in contact with any children prior to the academy opening for business that day.”
The school is disappointed that they only found out after the cups were washed. This meant the evidence was missing. The police will not charge the school for the delay; however, the district attorney can review the case.
Whas 11.com further reports, “Gratz was charged with two counts of child endangerment and released on her own recognizance. She was set to appear in court later this month, police said.”
“The pills that she said were used were Sominex, which is over-the-counter sleep aid medicine.”
“Police said they were notified on Monday, when they arrested Gratz and before serving a search warrant at her home that evening. While the teacher allegedly admitted to the accusations, police said, she had not yet commented on a motive.”
Parents have reason to be concerned about the care a preschool will take with their children. The Gratz case is a violation of preschool standards. According to eHow mom, parents can check for violations in California. “eHow mom goes on to say,”Every parent wants the best, most nurturing environment for her child. One of the most challenging parts of being a parent is securing quality childcare. A simple way to ensure this care is to perform a violations check on a facility prior to enrolling children. If a preschool is licensed in the state of California, information on violations is available to the public. The concerned parent can get the information they require by going to the California Department of Social Services website at ccld.ca.gov. Unfortunately, Not all preschools and day cares are licensed. Unlicensed daycares will not be listed in the state database.”