Parents in Ontario have been waiting decades for more affordable daycare options, but they don’t want to compromise on the quality of the experience for their child – and nor should they! Not all childcare options are the same, even under the Ontario regulations and under the new Canada-Wide Early Learning and Child Care plan (CWELCC), and parents are looking for clarity on what it all means. Let us help you!
What is CWELCC?
The Canada-Wide Early Learning Child Care (CWELCC) plan was announced by the Provincial and Federal Governments on March 28th, 2022, to support families by providing funding for licensed child care options. The goal of this funding is to reduce the cost of childcare for parents to an average of $12/day per child by 2025. Despite the media calling the program $10/day daycare, it is unlikely to get to that level – although $12/day is a real possibility in the coming years. In 2022, participating daycare centres and Licensed home childcare agencies provided parents with a rebate. In 2023, parents are enjoying reduced childcare rates by 52.75%. In order to participate, a licensed childcare program must apply to their Municipality for inclusion in the program and must be approved. Once approved, parents who are enrolled with the centre or agency, receive lower rates. These lower rates are applicable only to children under 6 years of age in an approved, licensed program.
The plan is also in place to:
- Support the childcare industry by improving educator wages
- Enhance the quality and accessibility of existing childcare settings
- Allow more women to participate in the workforce and contribute to the economy
- Allocate daycare spaces to allow diverse communities and children with special needs to have the same access to quality childcare
What This Means For Parents and Families
Parents or guardians of children who qualify do not have to apply to get the lower rates. If the agency or program is approved they will pay the lower rate. The difficulty for many parents will be finding a space in an approved centre or agency as there is still more demand than funded childcare spaces. When looking for a space for your child, remember that all programs are not equal – ensure you are looking for a program that puts quality first.
What to look for when selecting a home-based childcare option
- Is the program licensed by the Ministry of Education (that means the agency is meeting all requirements set out in the Childcare and Early Years Act for safety and programming)
- Does the Agency do anything above and beyond what is required by the Ministry of Education?
- How long has the Agency been in business?
- How are the childcare Providers screened? What training do they go through? How often are their homes inspected?
- Does the Agency provide equipment for the Providers to use?
- Does the Agency provide educational curriculum or programming?
- Do you have access to back-up care if your Provider is sick or absent?
The combined answers to the questions above will give you an idea of the overall quality of the program. At Wee Watch we can say that even with childcare fees going down, we have not changed our commitment to quality. The answer for us, to all questions above is YES. We go far above and beyond the standards required by the government for safety and programming. We ensure that our Providers are rigorously screened and trained. They receive coaching and on-going support and professional development as well as our educational programming to deliver to your child. Equipment is provided to them, items such as high chairs and strollers so parents know that the safety of their child is ensured. We are one of the only agencies in Ontario that provides back-up care so if your provider is sick or absent, you wont have to take a day off work.
For over 35 years, Wee Watch has been providing the highest quality childcare in a safe, nurturing, home environment. We focus on the development of your child through our Wee Learn education program and ensure parents have access to flexible care options (i.e. extended hours, weekends and overnights in some agencies).
Thorough the Canada-Wide Early Learning Child Care (CWELCC) plan, we are now able to serve more families, offer reduced childcare rates and provide the same quality service without compromise!
- Our Wee Watch families will get reduced fees for childcare – same quality we have always delivered
- Children are eligible until the end of the month they turn six
- When a child turns six between January and June, they are eligible until June 30th of that year
If your child’s care provider is not licensed under an agency and is not participating in the CWELCC program, you will not be able to benefit from the reduced childcare rates.
Why Pay More for Childcare? Experience our Difference
Trusted by Parents since 1984 for our expertise, our educational programming and because we set the bar high when it comes to the health, safety, and developmental needs of every child. Wee Watch offers full and part-time care for children six weeks to twelve years of age. The home environment combined with the small number of children, offers the flexibility and personal attention that is needed to ensure each child’s development and well-being.
We have a network of 44 Non-Profit Agencies and 1000 homes across Ontario that provide care to over 5000 children in loving, stimulating, and safe home environments. Agencies are deeply dedicated to helping families in their communities. All our agencies are licensed by the Ministry of Education, which means parents can be assured that standards for safety and nutrition are met. But we do more than meet standards, we exceed them. We believe that each child is unique and in partnership with our parents, we are committed to quality care for all children and their families. Licensed child care means peace of mind and now it also means more affordable childcare with reduced rates and the same quality we have always delivered.
In need of childcare, let us help you find a licensed agency to work with in your area.
To find A Wee Watch Licensed Home Child Care in your community – CLICK HERE