Ontario Creating 100,000 More Licensed Child Care Spaces
Province Increasing Access to Affordable Child Care to Support Toronto Families
Within the next five years, Ontario will help to create another 100,000 new, licensed child care spaces so that more families in Toronto can find quality, affordable care.
Today's announcement reaffirms the commitment the government made in the recent Speech from the Throne. Ontario will help to create the new, licensed child care spaces for infants, toddlers and preschoolers within the next five years, with the first spaces opening in 2017.
Approximately 20 per cent of 0-4 year olds in Ontario are currently in licensed child care. Research indicates that demand is much higher. Creating 100,000 new spaces will double capacity, creating spaces for about 40 per cent of children 0-4 years old. This investment will help people in their everyday lives by promoting early learning and development and helping more parents find quality, affordable care.
This investment builds on ongoing work with the federal government, parents and partners to develop a child care and early years system focused on quality, affordability, accessibility, parent choice, and flexibility.
The Associate Minister of Education (Early Years and Child Care) will be leading consultations over the fall and early winter with parents, communities and everyone who makes high quality child care possible in this province to inform the government's five-year commitment and the broader policy framework that will underpin it.
Investing in new, licensed child care spaces is part of the government's economic plan to build Ontario up and deliver on its number-one priority to grow the economy and create jobs. The four-part plan includes helping more people get and create the jobs of the future by expanding access to high-quality college and university education. The plan is making the largest infrastructure investment in hospitals, schools, roads, bridges and transit in Ontario's history and is investing in a low-carbon economy driven by innovative, high-growth, export-oriented businesses. The plan is also helping working Ontarians achieve a more secure retirement.
- In April 2015, the province announced $120 million in new funding dedicated to building safe, high-quality, licensed child care spaces in schools across the province. So far, $113 million has been allocated, resulting in almost 3,800 new licensed child care spaces coming soon to communities across Ontario.
- Since 2003–04, the government has doubled child care funding to more than $1 billion annually, and the number of licensed child care spaces in Ontario has grown to nearly 351,000 – an increase of 87 per cent.
- Ontario’s ban on child care wait list fees took effect September 1, 2016.
“Our government is investing in families by supporting a modernized child care and early years system with more capacity to care for our youngest learners. Adding more child care spaces in Toronto is an investment in our children, and an important step toward improving access to high-quality, licensed child care for all families.”