Now in her late 80s, Barbara Robinson founded The House of Little People in 1976.
With programs for infants, toddlers and preschool-aged kids, The House of Little People can be found at 122 East 91st Street; and a second location, The House of Little People Too, can be found at 129 East 90th Street.
An East Side Feed reader (thanks Ryan) recently told us the 91st Street location was shut down by the city. The reader had discovered this from a staff member.
We spoke with Robinson who said the Department of Health and Mental Hygiene shut them down because they are currently operating without a director, which is a legal requirement. She went on to tell us that the last director left the school about two months ago for financial reasons, and that they’ve been looking for a replacement ever since.
She was clearly hurt when we spoke, and her thoughts were with the parents and kids who now have nowhere to go.
Robinson tells us they’ll be able to reopen once a new director is in place, but it wasn’t immediately clear how long that process could take.
We’ve contacted the DOH for a statement.
UPDATE: at approximately 5:00 p.m. on Tuesday, we got a very different story from a Little People parent – which was soon confirmed by a second Little People parent.
Apparently, the school sent out an email on Friday afternoon saying the 91st Street location would be closed for some sort of emergency maintenance upgrade between March 20-24. On March 21, a second email was sent assuring parents there were no health concerns, and that more information would be provided soon.
We’ll provide updates as we learn more.
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