Parents voice concerns with Antioch childcare facility run by Metro School Board member
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WZTV) —
Several parents say they are fed up with the owner of an Antioch childcare facility, citing what they say is unprofessional, disrespectful behavior. The owner, Fran Bush, is the newest member of the Metro Nashville School Board, serving District 6. She says that she’s done nothing wrong.
Antioch parent Mykal Whitney said he enrolled his 3-year-old son Myles at the Model Kids Learning Academy in Antioch in March.
Whitney said from the beginning, he’s known about Bush’s strict $50 late tuition payment fee.
This Monday, after finishing an overnight shift, Whitney said he rushed to the childcare facility to make his payment in cash, due by 9 a.m.
Late by five minutes, he said Bush still insisted on the late fee, which he hadn’t brought with him. After leaving, Whitney said he and Bush started exchanging text messages. He said in one of them, Bush called him a “pathetic parent.”
"I have four sons, we have two step kids, I have a child on the way,” Whitney said. “I break my back every day for my family. Every single day. And for her to just let that come out of her mouth, I can't believe it."
He said Bush continued to tell him that Myles wouldn’t be allowed at the facility after that day.
"Be mad at me all day. Be mad at me, she called me names,” Whitney said. “Call me names, but don't take it out on the children, it has nothing to do with it at all."
According to Bush’s attorney, Lorraine Wade, Whitney had made late payments several times. She also said he posted inaccurate photos of the texts on Facebook, leaving out threatening messages he sent to Bush. She said she plans on reviewing the texts between the two.
In the meantime, Wade said Bush has filed a harassment complaint against Whitney because he shared her personal cell phone number on Facebook. After the post was made, she said she started receiving harassing phone calls, including injury threats.
After Whitney posted his story, along with the text messages on Facebook, he said several parents came forward, sharing similar stories of payment issues and alleged lack of professionalism on Bush’s part.
"She doesn't care about our children,” Nicole Harris, whose child used to attend the learning academy, said about Bush. “It's money that she cares about. It's all about money. If she cared about our children, she would be more empathetic when it came to our situations as parents."
"This didn't have anything to do with me, it wasn't a vindictive thing, it was just awareness. If you go over here, this is how you might get treated, and everybody else just came out,” Whitney said.
Whitney said several other parents shared similar stories, but many did not wish to be identified as their children still attend the facility.
According to the Tennessee Secretary of State’s Office, Bush’s business is listed as inactive through the Division of Business Services.
“However, this relates only to the Corporation’s registration with our office; it will not directly pertain to any business licenses issued by other governmental entities,” Assistant General Counsel for the TN Secretary of State Lauren Topping said.
Wade said this doesn’t mean she can’t legally conduct business in Tennessee, and she has applied for re-instatement, which will fix the issue.