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FAQ

Choosing licensed child care gives children access to quality programming, school readiness and a range of community supports. Though the cost may at first seem expensive, the rates for licensed child care gradually get lower as children get older:

 

  • Approximately $950 per month for an infant
  • Approximately $860 per month for a toddler
  • Approximately $800 per month for a preschooler
  • Approximately $190 per month for school age children (before or after school)
  • Approximately $385 per month for school age children (before and after school care)
In order to be eligible for child care subsidy, each parent must complete an income tax return every year. Eligibility for fee subsidy is based on the family’s net income, shown on line 236 of your most recent Revenue Canada Notice of Assessment. The following table gives an example of the monthly amount that the family would have to contribute to child care costs.


If the actual child care costs exceed the parental contribution amount then you may be eligible for fee subsidy.

Fee subsidies are available across a broad range of income levels. Families with an adjusted annual income of up to $20,000 are eligible for full fee subsidy and no calculation of a parental contribution is required.

For families with adjusted annual income above $20,000, the parental contribution is calculated based on 10% of their adjusted income over $20,000.

For families with adjusted annual income above $40,000, the parental contribution is calculated at 10% of the amount over $20,000 up to $40,000 plus 30% of the amount over $40,000. For example:

The income test is designed such that parents pay the monthly parental contribution as calculated above in each month that their child(ren) need child care regardless of the number of days of childcare per week.

You must report changes to your Child Care Coordinator or Case Manager immediately to determine your continued ongoing eligibility for child care subsidy if your circumstances change for any reason, including, but not limited to the following:

  • Marital status or family size
  • Employment or schooling status (including change in hours of employment)
  • Enrolment in an educational program (including dropping or adding courses)
  • Changes in residence – if you move or change your phone number

Please note: You must file an income tax return each year, respond to all CDSSAB Child Care Coordinator requests and submit information by the deadlines given.

If you will be experiencing a loss in adjusted gross income (line 236 of your Notice of Assessment) of 20 percent or more within the calendar year, you may be eligible for a decrease in your child care contribution. Contact your Child Care Coordinator or Case Manager to determine if your decreased adjusted gross income impacts your assessed contribution amount.

If you fail to report any changes that may impact your child care subsidy, CDSSAB Children’s Services reserves the right to recover overpayments. An overpayment is the difference between the amount of Fee Subsidy paid on behalf of the Applicant(s) less the amount that actually should have been paid according to their circumstances.

Eligibility will be determined once verification is completed by your Child Care Coordinator or Case Manager. The time it takes to verify your application will be dependent on how quickly all of the required information is submitted.

At the 6 month mark, your child care subsidy file will be reviewed and you will be required to submit requested documents in order to determine your continued eligibility. You will then again be required to meet with your Child Care Coordinator or Case Manager on the one year date for review.

 

While receiving child care subsidy, your Child Care Coordinator or Case Manager will work with you to make sure you get the service and supports you need. If you still have unanswered questions, please contact your Child Care Coordinator or Case Manager.

When child care settings are licensed, they are regulated to ensure high standards of safety and quality. This means your children will benefit from a positive atmosphere in a safe environment where staff interact with children in a variety of fun and inviting activities.

The Child Care and Early Years Act (CCEYA) regulates all licensed child care settings. The CCEYA sets provincial safety and quality standards in many areas such as staff-to-child ratios, safe playgrounds, establishing healthy eating and sleeping habits as well as age-specific play areas.

In Ontario, anyone who cares for more than five unrelated children under the age of 10 years has to be licensed by the Ministry of Education. Licensed child care providers have to meet certain provincial health, safety and caregiver training standards.

To learn about the differences between licensed (formal) and unlicensed (informal) child care, visit the Ontario Ministry of Education’s page on Choosing Child Care.

The Child Care and Early Years Act, 2014 is the legislation that replaced the Day Nurseries Act (DNA) and established new rules governing child care in Ontario.

The Child Care and Early Years Act (CCEYA) regulates all licensed child care settings. The CCEYA sets provincial safety and quality standards in many areas such as staff-to-child ratios, safe playgrounds, establishing healthy eating and sleeping habits as well as age-specific play areas.

Licensed child care programs employ Registered Early Childhood Educators (RECEs) who study child development, curriculum development and behaviour management. The two-year ECE diploma also includes child care placements. Early Childhood Educators are also registered with the College of Early Childhood Educators.

Qualified RECEs are instrumental in establishing a warm and stimulating environment for your child. Home child care centres have carefully screened, approved and supported providers who keep current with early childhood education development issues and trends.

The public register informs parents, employers and the public if an RECE is a member of the College. Providing this information assures the public that individuals practising the profession of early childhood education are qualified, competent and accountable.  

The College can help if you want to find out more information about the ethical and professional standards that guide our members, registered early childhood educators. Find out what to do if you have a concern about an RECE.

You can also read Connexions, the College’s publication and their annual reports online.

www.college-ece.ca/en/Public/Parents

 

How Does Learning Happen? Ontario’s Pedagogy for the Early Years is a professional learning resource for those working in child care and child and family programs. It supports pedagogy and program development in early years settings that is shaped by views about children, the role of educators and families, and the relationships among them. It builds on foundational knowledge about children and is grounded in new research and leading-edge practice from around the world.

How Does Learning Happen? inspires critical reflection and discussion among those who work with children and their families in early years settings. It includes goals for children, expectations for programs and questions for reflection that provide a starting point for thinking about the types of environments, experiences, and interactions that bring out the best in children, families and educators. It will help to strengthen the quality of early years programs and services across Ontario as we explore together, how learning happens.

Children in licensed child care centres are usually grouped according to their age.

  • Infant: is a child under 18 months of age.
  • Toddler: is a child from 18 months to 30 months (2 ½ years old).
  • Preschool: is a child from 2½ years up to and including 5 years old.
  • Junior kindergarten: is a child 3½ years of age or over and up to and including 5 ½ years old as of August 31 of the year, who is eligible to attend junior kindergarten.
  • Senior kindergarten: is a child 4½ years of age or over and up to and including 5½ years old as of August 31 of the year, who is eligible to attend senior kindergarten.
  • School Age: is a child 5½ years of age or over as of August 31 of the year (who is eligible for grade one attendance) and up to 12 years old.

With Mixed Age Groupings, up to 25% of children in one age group can be combined with another age group. This occurs to allow children from one age group to transition into the next older age group and to allow for family groupings.

It is important for parents to be informed when making decisions about child care.

Child care should be an enriching and satisfying experience for your child. You should always feel confident that your child is in a healthy, safe and happy environment.

If you have concerns about a Registered Early Childhood Educator providing care to your child, contact the College of Early Childhood Educators to submit a complaint.

If you have concerns or complaints about an unlicensed child care provider, please contact 1-844-516-6263 or use the registry of unlicensed child care violations to find out if your unlicensed child care provider has any violations against him or her.

Parents should be aware that in Ontario, unlicensed child care providers are not regulated by the government. This means they are neither licensed nor inspected. However, the ministry does investigate all complaints from the public about child care providers who may be:

  • providing care to more than five unrelated children without a licence.
  • providing private-home day care at more than one private residence without a licence.

Ministry of Education website: http://www.edu.gov.on.ca/childcare/concerns.html