A two-year-old girl left a nursery unnoticed and walked half a mile home alone, police have confirmed.
The toddler, called Louise, left the nursery in Runcorn at about 13:00 on Wednesday and soon after knocked on her parents' door saying "Mummy, I'm home".
It is believed a door at the nursery was left open by a workman, police said. The nursery has not commented.
Louise's father John, said it was a "shocking ordeal" and called for sackings.
"She got out of school, electric gates and everything, walked half a mile, walked through the woods and was 50 yards away from the canal," he said.
"It's so shocking, it's unbelievable that the school cannot even notice she's gone. Anything could have happened. Somebody should be sacked."
Louise's father alerted police who said they had referred the incident to the council. He has since registered his daughter with a different nursery.
A spokesman for Halton Borough Council said: "The council has been providing advice and support to the nursery following notification of the incident."
The nursery is private and Ofsted-registered.
A Cheshire Police spokesman said: "At this stage it is believed the child escaped from the nursery after workmen left a door open.
"The child was unharmed and the matter has been referred to the local authority."