Ontario Building New Licensed Child Care Spaces in Schools
New Licensed Spaces Part of $120 Million Child Care Investment
Over the coming year, Ontario will begin construction on 766 more licensed child care spaces in local schools across the province to improve access to safe, high quality child care.
As announced earlier this year, Ontario is investing $120 million over the next three years to create approximately 4,000 new licensed child care spaces across the province. Funding for the first round of spaces has now been allocated to 13 schools to build a total of 42 new child care rooms housing 766 new spaces.
Creating more licensed child care spaces in local schools will give children the opportunity to transition from child care into full-day kindergarten at the same location, making for an easier adjustment. The new spaces are also being built in areas where there is significant demand, giving families more options when it comes to quality licensed child care that is close to home.
In addition to the province's investment, the past year has seen a more than 10 per cent increase in the number of licensed child care spaces in Ontario.
Continuing to improve education - from early years through to postsecondary education - is part of the government's four-part plan to build Ontario up. The plan includes investing in people's talents and skills, building new public infrastructure like roads and transit, creating a dynamic, supportive environment where business thrives, and building a secure savings plan.
- Since 2003, the number of licensed child care spaces in Ontario has grown to nearly 351,000 – an increase of 87 per cent.
- New child care rooms built through this investment will accommodate children from birth until they are ready to enter full-day kindergarten.
- The spaces that have been approved for construction will be ready for programs to open as early as September 2016 and will continue to open up until September 2018.
- Over the next 10 years, the province plans to provide school boards with more than $11 billion to help build new schools in areas of high growth, improve the condition of existing schools, and invest in projects to reduce surplus space through school consolidations.
- Offering more licensed child care spaces in schools aligns with the government’s commitment to support community hubs in offering client-focused, co-ordinated services such as child care, education, health care and social services.
“Our government is proud to invest in families by supporting a modernized child care and early years system with more capacity to care for our youngest learners. Adding nearly 800 child care spaces in local schools is an important step toward improving access to high quality, licensed child care for all families.”