I would like to take a moment to advise residents of some changes taking effect this fall regarding the City’s Before and After School recreation programs with information provided from the City’s Recreational Manager.
As a result of the Provincial Child Care and Early Years Act, effective September 1, 2017, the City’s recreation programs will only be permitted to offer programs to children between the ages of 6 and 12 years of age by December 31, 2017.
As well, the City will only be able to provide each child with a maximum of 3 consecutive hours of programming per day, meaning that the same child will not be able to participate in both our before and after school programs.
Over the last few months, City and Provincial officials have explored all options available that would allow the City to continue to serve 4 and 5-year-old children, as Authorized Recreation Providers under the Act. This goal could only be accomplished by converting the 33 before and after school recreation programs into licensed child care facilities.
City staff has reviewed the option of moving to licensed child care at all of our service locations and concluded that this would lead to a significant cost increase for parents. Providing licensed programs would require the City to significantly change its present staffing and supervisory structure to meet licensing requirements. Less than 6 per cent of our existing clients will not be able to register in the fall as a result of the change in regulations as they will be under the age of 6. In order to accommodate the 6 per cent the City would have to increase fees by approximately 76 per cent for all before and after school participants in order to offset the additional program costs. This would place the price for the City’s recreation programs in the same range as those currently offered by licensed care providers and extended day school based programs.
To support the families who may need support with the transition the following information is being provided to assist with finding child care options in the community.
There are many licensed childcare providers available in the City of Ottawa for families to consider, including school boards who offer extended day programs to 4 and 5 year olds. Families can go to www.ottawa.ca/daycare and register on the City’s Child Care Registry and Waitlist which will allow families to explore child care options in the community.
If you need help with paying for your child care costs, parents can also apply for fee subsidy using the Child Care Registry and Waitlist. With the recently announced Federal and Provincial investments in child care there is additional funding available to assist families.
The Province and the City of Ottawa are committed to helping parents find quality and affordable child care. If you have any questions, you can e-mail email@example.com, or visit the City’s website at www.ottawa.ca/daycare.