Free preschool child care for children aged 2½ until they start are eligible to start kindergarten, more child care spaces and more affordable child care
Early learning is crucial to a child’s development and helps them get the best possible start in life. And, according to the Bank of Canada, affordable and accessible child care boosts the economy by helping parents, especially mothers, return to the workforce.
In 2014, you elected us to build Ontario up. Since then, we have supported early learning by implementing Full-Day Kindergarten and improving access to child care for Ontario families. The number of licensed child care spaces in Ontario has grown by 38 per cent since 2012-13 and the Liberal government also stopped child care providers from charging fees to have children placed on a waiting list.
But we are hearing from people that we need to do more. Families shouldn’t have to struggle to find or afford child care.
That’s why the Ontario Liberals will make our province the first in Canada to provide free preschool child care and will continue to expand child care. Our plan will:
- Provide free preschool child care to children aged two-and-a-half to kindergarten age, beginning in 2020 and saving families an average of $17,000 per child
- Create 100,000 new licensed child care spaces over five years
- Invest $1 billion over three years to increase access to licensed child care for infants and toddlers, reduce fees and reduce or eliminate fee-subsidy wait lists
- Help children gain valuable social and learning skills that will lead to better preparedness for kindergarten
- Help parents, especially mothers, return to work when they choose to
- Support child care professionals through higher wages and professional development
- Create 4,500 new, culturally relevant child care spaces in First Nations communities