Craig Harris/Macon County Times Approximately 130 children, including part-time students, will be affected by the center's closure.

Craig Harris/Macon County Times

Approximately 130 children, including part-time students, will be affected by the center's closure.

After months of court battles, Works In Progress Daycare Center shut down on Friday, although director Stacie Ritchie indicated that new management is in the process of taking ownership.

The ruling finalizes the Tennessee Department of Human Services' (DHS) initial decision to revoke the license in February.

"We feel like we've done everything to prevent this closure and regret the (Child Care Licensing Board of Review) would not see our efforts to assist our parents any further," Ritchie said in a statement posted at the facility. "I'm encouraged about the new management working diligently to obtain the temporary license … (and) I'm proud of the time I've had to serve our families, our teachers and the children here."

According to Ritchie, the new management was unable to start the process of obtaining a license until the center was shut down.

Ritchie herself will be unable to apply for a new child care license for one year as the center's former owner, according to TDHS Press Secretary Sky Arnold.

"TDHS will visit the site to ensure it is closed," Arnold said. "If they were to appeal in chancery court they would have to remain closed."

An appeal in chancery court is unlikely considering the center is now working to change over management, though a potential time frame for reopening is to be determined.

Approximately 130 students attending the center were affected by the decision to close, along with its employees.

The initial TDHS decision to revoke the license is based on 38 violations found during visits dating back to January of 2014, including an incident involving former employee Ashley Centers' arrest after allegedly abusing children at the center.

A record of those violations and the steps taken to correct them can be found on the TDHS website.