Released on March 22, 2022
The Ministry of Education is offering a one-time grant to regulated and operational child care centres to assist them in recruiting and retaining qualified early childhood educators (ECEs). Funds awarded will be calculated at $145 per regulated child care space. This grant is supported by funding provided through the Canada-Saskatchewan Canada-Wide Early Learning and Child Care Agreement.
“Early childhood educators are at the very core of the Canada-wide system we are building with provinces and territories,” said Canada’s Minister for Families, Children and Social Development, Karina Gould. “Today’s announcement in Saskatchewan is another meaningful step in valuing their essential work and providing them with the tools, resources and training they need to succeed.”
“The Government of Saskatchewan understands that qualified ECEs are an essential part of providing high-quality, affordable child care,” Education Minister Dustin Duncan said. “This workforce enhancement grant benefits early childhood educators, the centres that employ them, and the families that use child care services.”
Regulated child care centres will be able to apply the funding in ways that support their centre’s recruitment and retention of qualified ECEs. Some potential uses of the grant are advertising campaigns to recruit certified ECEs, bonuses for staff who complete an ECE certification level, or monetary long-service awards for certified ECEs.
“From providing incentives for new hires to supporting educators within the field who have gone back to school, this grant will provide licensed child care centres and family day homes across the province the flexibility to address the needs within their own organizations,” Eastview Centre for Early Learning Director April Berg said. “For our organization, it will provide us the opportunity to develop a retention strategy for our educators who have worked tirelessly through the pandemic over the past two years.”
The Workforce Enhancement Grant is just one part of a larger initiative by the Governments of Canada and Saskatchewan to support and advance child care in Saskatchewan. The Canada-Saskatchewan Canada-Wide Early Learning and Child Care Agreement, signed in August 2021, provides a federal investment of nearly $1.1 billion over five years for regulated early learning and child care programs and services for children under the age of six in Saskatchewan. With 50 per cent child care fee reductions already announced in the province, the goal is to bring down average fees for regulated child care to $10-a-day by the end of March 2026.
The Government of Canada is making a transformative investment to build a Canada-wide early learning and child care system in partnership with provincial, territorial and Indigenous partners. More than half of Canada’s provinces and territories, including Saskatchewan, have either announced child care fee reductions or have already achieved an average cost of $10-a-day or lower for regulated child care.
For more information, contact:Chelsey Balaski