Increasing access to child care
Prince Edward Island continues to increase access to early learning and child care across the province. More than 230 affordable child care spaces are being added across the province, with five additional early childhood centres receiving an official Early Years Centre designation from the province.
Increasing the number of designated Early Years Centres helps to grow access to high-quality, affordable, flexible and inclusive child care services for Island children and families.
The five centres that have received designation include:
• Island Montessori Academy, Charlottetown
• Island Montessori Academy, Stratford
• Wekatesk Aboriginal Headstart
• Mighty Oaks Academy, Grand Tracadie
• Tiny Tot Early Childhood Centre, Sherwood
“At Mighty Oaks Academy we are delighted to become a designated Early Years Centre. This designation will allow us to better support our rural families by implementing lower parent fees and pay a wage that will attract and strengthen our program with highly qualified educators, while delivering a nationally recognized play based curriculum for children,” said Darla Farquharson from Mighty Oaks Academy in Grand Tracadie.
Designated Early Years Centres receive operational funding from the province to follow a provincial curriculum framework, recognized as one of the best in the country. These centres provide provincially regulated fees for parents, and they are staffed by trained Early Childhood Educators who are compensated according to the provincial wage grid. There are now 66 provincial Early Years Centres on Prince Edward Island.
“Early childhood development is one of the best investments that government can make in the future of our province. We are working to provide children with a solid foundation and help them build the skills and confidence they need to thrive. We will continue to make important investments like this that support children and families and help make our Island communities stronger.”
- Education and Lifelong Learning Minister Natalie Jameson
“Every child deserves the best start in life. Thanks to their designation, these centres will help grow the Canada-wide early learning and child care system and allow more families and children in Prince Edward Island to have access to high-quality, affordable, flexible and inclusive early learning and child care,” said Canada’s Minister of Families, Children and Social Development, Karina Gould.
Approximately $1.35 million from the Canada-Prince Edward Island Canada-wide Early Learning and Child Care Agreement is also being invested to expand the number of child care spaces at 13 centers across the province. 220 new spaces have been approved, with new access coming to Charlottetown, O’Leary, Souris, Kensington, Cornwall, Summerside, Slemon Park, Stratford, St. Teresa’s and Murray River.
Increasing the number of child care spaces in Early Years Centres may require Centres to modify existing facilities to take in additional children or purchase the necessary equipment. Through the Canada-Prince Edward Island Canada-Wide Early Learning and Child Care Agreement, Capital Grants of up to $37,500 per Centre are available to approved applicants, an investment of up to $363,000.
The Canada-Prince Edward Island Canada-Wide Early Learning and Child Care Agreement, includes a commitment to designate up to 20 new Early Years Centres over the next two years and add 452 new licensed childcare spaces. The next round of applications for child care centres interested in applying for designation as an Early Years Centre will take place in the coming months.
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. This includes a historic federal investment of nearly $121.3 million for Prince Edward Island. Through the Canada-wide system, all families in the country will have access to regulated early learning and child care for an average cost of $10-a-day by March 2026.
Senior Communications Officer
Department of Education and Lifelong Learning
Office of the Minister of Families, Children and Social Development, Karina Gould