This is an historic and exciting time for Saskatchewan families and the Early Learning and Child Care (ELCC) sector. The new Canada-Saskatchewan child care agreement and the $1.1 billion federal transfer to Saskatchewan sets the stage for creating a high quality, inclusive, accessible and affordable child care system, but important policy changes are necessary.
The Saskatchewan Early Childhood Association, Canadian Child Care Federation, Child Care Now and the Muttart Foundation worked with stakeholder’s from across the province to develop a made-in-Saskatchewan Roadmap that can help governments, service providers and communities begin the important task of system building. The Government of Saskatchewan has already announced some first steps to make child care more affordable for families and to increase the wages and educational preparation for early childhood educators. These are key starting points, but these will have to be expanded, and other policy initiatives developed, in the coming months and years. Saskatchewan’s child care plan will be focused on the best interests and rights of children and the inherent value of childhood.
The Roadmap identifies the key policy directions that will enable all families to benefit equitably from reductions in parent fees by half by the end of 2022 and average fees of $10 per day by 2025/26. It outlines strategies to help create the thousands of new affordable child care spaces needed to meet the needs of children and families, and identifies the important new investments required to ensure that early childhood educators are well-prepared, supported and paid for their important work.
The groups that released the Roadmap are calling on both the provincial and federal governments to work with the broad range of early learning and child care stakeholders to make the best decisions going forward.
“The Canada-Saskatchewan agreement is transformational, but it is essential that how we move forward is planned, evidence-based and focused on all elements of quality, including affordability, the ELCC workforce and spaces”, said Georgia Lavallee, Executive Director at the Saskatchewan Early Childhood Association.
Morna Ballantyne, Executive Director at Child Care Now, added, “The $10/day child care plan gives Saskatchewan the opportunity to shift from a market based, patchwork model of services to a comprehensive child care system.”
P.O. Box 34, Weyburn, SK S4H 2J8
Tel: (306) 861-7916
The Saskatchewan Early Childhood Association
Saskatchewan Early Childhood Association (306) 861-7916
Director, Child Care Now Saskatchewan
Executive Director, Child Care Now 613.791.3411
CEO, Canadian Child Care Federation 613-729-5289 ext 221
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