More early childhood centres receive Early Years Centre Designation
Seven early childhood centres received an official Early Years Centre designation from the province, which will provide more affordable childcare options for Islanders.
Increasing the number of designated Early Years Centres helps to grow accessible, affordable and inclusive childcare services for Island children and families. The seven centres that applied and received the designation include:
- CHANCES Smart Start Murphy’s, Charlottetown
- CHANCES Smart Start O’Leary 2, O’Leary
- CHANCES Smart Start Stratford, Stratford
- Island Montessori Academy Cornwall, Cornwall
- Kinkora Early Learning Centre, Kinkora
- Little Ducklings Pond, Stratford
- Precious Jewels Daycare, Charlottetown
“I am so proud of Precious Jewels and the amazing team we have. This designation means that we will be able to continue with the great things that we have been doing all along, and we will now be part of a Canada-wide early years system that will provide us with the resources and support to help us thrive and grow,” said Cheryl MacKay, Director of Precious Jewels Daycare.
Designated Early Years Centres receive operational funding from government to follow a provincial curriculum framework, recognized as one of the best in the country. These centres provide government-regulated fees for parents and they are staffed by trained Early Childhood Educators who are on the provincial wage grid. There are now 61 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 deserve the best start in life. Thanks to their designation, these centres will allow more families and children in Prince Edward Island to have access to high-quality, affordable early learning hand child care.” said Canada’s Minister of Families, Children and Social Development, Karina Gould.
Investments in early childhood education have increased by 41 per cent in the provincial government’s 2021-2022 operational budget. This includes increased wages for early childhood education, autism assistants and special needs assistants; increased annual funding through quality enhancement grants for licensed private centres; increased grants for children with special needs; and the designation of new Early Years Centres. These investments will support growth in the sector and lead to more spaces and better access for children and families.
PEI, through the Canada-Prince Edward Island Canada-Wide Early Learning and Child Care Agreement, is committed to designating 20 new Early Years Centres over the next two years and adding 452 new licensed childcare spaces.
The next round of applications for PEI childcare centres interested in applying for a designation will open on Monday, November 29, and will remain open until Friday, December 17, 2021.
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. The goal is to bring fees for regulated child care down to $10 per day on average within the next five years. By the end of 2022, the Government of Canada is aiming to reduce average fees for regulated early learning and child care by 50 per cent to make it more affordable for families.
Senior Communications Officer
Office of the Minister of Families, Children and Social Development, Karina Gould