Parents and former students share memories of Kandy Kastle

CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. (WDEF) — After more than 40 years, a well known Chattanooga daycare shuts its doors.

For the last time, parents are picking their kids up at Kandy Kastle. Leonda Lloyd’s son has been going here for most of his life.

“My son has been going here for six years. It is sad. It is real sad. I can’t believe they are closing,” Lloyd said.

She says the daycare taught him well.

“He learned manners, his ABC’s. He knows how to spell his name and everything he was prepared for kindergarten,” Lloyd said.

Former students are looking back at their time here. Hamilton County School Board member Karitsa Jones is a Kandy Kastle graduate.

“I attribute my success, honestly as a thriving adult to the foundation that I received early learning at Kandy Kastle School,” Jones said.

She says they provided an environment where kids were free to learn.

“They weren’t just keeping us, but they were teaching us. They provided cultural enrichment to us. They exposed us to things in our community. They talked to us about service. They prepared us for what Mr. Mason always called big school,” Jones said.

Graduates are proud of their early learning institution.

“We love Mr. Mason and his family. They have contributed to early learning in Hamilton County for 40 plus years, devoted their lives to children. And so all I can tell them is thank you for what they did for me as well as my peers. I think they did an awesome job,” Jones said.

As for Llyod, she says she will not look at other programs for her son, because she only felt comfortable with Kandy Kastle.

A sign from the Hope City Church says Kandy Kastle is closing because of ongoing financial troubles. The Brainerd church plans to form their own Daycare to replace Kandy Kastle.

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