On The Rise: Parents Face Childcare Shortage As City Grows

Posted at 6:30 PM, Aug 16, 2018
and last updated 2018-08-22 20:55:28-04

Parents in Nashville are in the midst of a childcare crisis, one that is only getting worse as the city continues to grow.

It's a simple issue of supply and demand. There just aren't enough childcare facilities in the downtown core to meet the number of families needing to put their kids in daycare.

In many instances, expecting moms and dads are being told they have to put on waiting lists just to have their kid in childcare, waiting lists that are often 18 months to two years long.

"I think families are scrambling, especially those who are in the home stretch and need childcare in the next six months, I don't know what they're going to do," says Cindy Lea Ligon who runs McKendree Childcare in downtown Nashville.

Cindy says the problem isn't getting any better in part because developers and businesses moving in to new buildings downtown aren't making childcare facilities part of their blueprints. State fire code mandates childcare facilities must be on the first floor, meaning if they are an after thought by companies, they likely won't exist.

Parents are often the ones stuck in the middle.

"It's just very expensive to offer high quality care, especially at the core of the city because land is so expensive. It's just really an economic hurdle."


On The Rise is NewsChannel 5's new initiative committed to highlighting growth in Middle Tennessee, including the challenges and success stories that growth can bring. Learn more about it here.