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Cheraw Police charge daycare teacher after giving melatonin gummies to students

Cheraw Police are investigating allegations of children receiving melatonin gummies at an area daycare.
On Wednesday, Feb. 14, Nayshia Quanteya Gillespie, 23, of Bennettsville, was arrested and charged with unlawful conduct towards a child.
According to a report from the Cheraw Police Department, police spoke to unnamed parents about an incident at
St. David’s Episcopal Daycare and Preschool on Thursday, Feb. 8. The parents said their child was shoved by Gillespie and given melatonin gummies without their permission.
Police went to the school and spoke with director Jimmy Carol Avent, who said she was notified of the incident on Tuesday, Feb. 13.                                                      

Nayshia Q. Gillespie

In the report, Avent said she had already contacted DSS about the incident and gone through protocols the school had in place.
Avent said she was advised that Gillespie kicked one of the children in her care and gave melatonin gummies, which are not allowed and against protocol, to make them sleep
.
According to the police report, when Gillespie arrived at the school, she was informed of the allegations and suspended by the school. Then, she was escorted to the Cheraw Police Department, where she was interviewed, arrested, and charged.
The report involves three juvenile victims, ages 2, 1, and 2.

On Wednesday, Feb. 14, officials at
St. David’s Episcopal Daycare and Preschool sent a letter to parents disclosing the allegations of a staff member violating the strict childcare policy at the school.
“We also notified the parents involved, as well as the local and state authorities. We have always been committed to being transparent with our families regarding the welfare of your children, and this commitment continues. However, given the legal aspects of this incident, there are certain details we cannot share at this time,” she wrote in the letter.
In an email to The Link, Avent said, “School leadership reported this accusation to the Department of Social Services within minutes of learning about it. The employee was placed on administrative leave without pay, never came into contact with a child in our care after school leadership learned of the accusation, and never will again.
Additionally, we have scheduled mandatory re-training for all staff members at the school to ensure that everyone who is entrusted with the care of these children fully understands our strict childcare policy and their responsibilities to immediately report any violations of those policies that they may witness.”
Cheraw parents, Brittany and Earl Goldsberry Jr., spoke to The Link about the incident involving their child, who started attending the St. David’s Episcopal Daycare and Preschool in January of this year.
“Now my worst nightmares ha
ve come true,” she said.
The Goldsberry shared details of an incident involving their two-year-old son.
Goldsberry said they were notified Feb. 14 by the director at St. David’s Episcopal School and were asked to meet with her, a priest at St. David’s and a board member.
“She said it is a
lleged that your son has been given melatonin while at daycare,” said Goldsberry. “Immediately, I looked at my husband and said, call the police.”
Also, during the meeting, the parents learned their son was shoved and kicked on the previous day by the same teacher.
“Why would a teacher think it is okay to shove him or put her feet on him in any type of way? I understand that children can be bad,” said Goldsberry.
The couple went to the Cheraw Police Department and to the DSS office in Chesterfield to file reports.
The Goldsberrys took their son to his pediatrician for evaluation and testing for any substances. The pediatrician found nothing wrong.
While at the pediatrician’s office, they learned
Gillespie had been charged and arrested. Gillespie has posted bail.
Goldsberry spoke highly of the Cheraw Police Department.
They were on it,” she said. “The chief has an amazing team. They are here for our county. They are here for our town.”
Goldsberry asked what if something would have happened to her two-year-old son.
“What if he would have gotten too much? What if he would have gone into a deep sleep and never woke up? Or, what if he was allergic to something in melatonin?” she said.
She admitted she would not stop until the teacher faced consequences for what she did.
“This is my baby that she could have killed. We’re our children’s voices,” said Goldsberry.

 

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