Licensed child care operators in Toronto can start applying for Canada’s new Early Learning and Child Care (CWELCC) funding program starting Thursday.
What part of the deal announced earlier this year between the province and the federal government, all licensed child care programs in Toronto that serve children under the age of six, or those who turn six by June 30, can apply to participate in the program that offers fee reductions for eligible families.
Additionally, all licensed child care programs may request access to workers’ compensation supports for eligible staff under the CWELCC program.
Once a child care program has opted in and been approved, eligible families can expect child care fees to be reimbursed retroactively to April 1. CWELCC website includes details about the program, eligibility requirements, and upcoming information session dates for child care operators.
The plan includes a commitment to provide an average of $10 a day in child care by September 2025.
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CityNews spoke with several child care operators earlier this month who said they were unsure about participating in the program.
Childcare operators received a 74-page document from the Ministry of Education in April outlining funding rules, which many say is full of confusing language, many gray areas and leaves more questions than answers.
Many parents also felt betrayed by the promise of child care at $10 a day.
“There are no places anywhere. We’ve been on a waiting list for two years and there are no private or other spots right now,” Robyn Vanpee told CityNews.
The City of Toronto says that more than 1,000 child care centers and licensed family child care agencies are eligible to apply to the program. The deadline to participate is September 1.