When your kids head for summer camp, there
is no state agency to oversee what happens once they show up.
Unlike standard day care centers, summer camps aren't licensed
by the state. North Carolina doesn't require criminal background
checks on counselors or training in C-P-R or first aid.
There is attention given to kitchen and food safety. Otherwise,
there is no state system to investigate safety or rate camp quality
in programs that don't receive federal subsidy money. North
Carolina doesn't keep track of complaints, and no state agency has
the authority to make sure counselors receive training on managing
groups of children or other safety issues.
Sue Russell of the Child Care Services Association says
licensing could force camps to spend additional money on training
and hiring more counselors to reduce staff-to-child ratios. The
state also would likely have to hire more monitoring staff -- all
of which could raise prices for parents.