The cost of child care in Toronto is considered the highest in all of Canada. Parents often struggle to find a quality child care program and balance work as well as the expenses of ensuring their children are adequately cared for. It can be downright frustrating for those having a tough time affording quality care in Toronto. Especially those who want a daycare centre with years of experience, quality staff members and those that have your children’s interests in mind.
The good news is that The introduction of the $10 a Day Child Care Deal in March 2022 by the Federal and Ontario governments marked a significant step towards providing affordable, inclusive, and high-quality childcare services to families across the province.
$10 a day Child Care Deal in Ontario
In March 2022 the $10 a day Child Care Deal was introduced. Under this agreement, the federal government is set to allocate $10.2 billion to Ontario over five years. The goal is to slash the average cost of a child-care spot to $10 per day by 2025, as revealed by both federal and provincial authorities. The aim is to allow parents to find safe and affordable childcare for their children. The program will be phased in and childcare centres will need to opt-in to the program.
Additionally, the deal outlines a comprehensive strategy to establish 86,000 new daycare programs in Ontario by 2026, primarily focusing on fostering the growth of not-for-profit operators. These spots are going to fast so we have tips to help you find daycare in Toronto.
How to Find Daycares in Toronto
There are a few sources that can be used to find Daycares in Toronto. You can use the City of Toronto A-Z listing of services or Child Care Centres – Toronto Central – torontocentralhealthline.ca. The A-Z listing will also let you know if they are participating in CWELCC ($10 a day program) or if they accept Toronto Daycare Subsidy.
These resources have comprehensive lists of child-care centres, home daycare centres, and more to help you find the right program. Whether you are looking for a toddler program, part-time care, full-time care or anything in between, there are several child care services available in Toronto for children of all ages.
Daycare Centres in Toronto
Tips to Get Daycare Subsidy
In order to get the daycare subsidy, you can follow a few tips.
- Apply Early: There is a waiting list for child care fee subsidies, so applying as soon as possible is advisable.
- Consider Costs: It’s worth noting that having a subsidy may not always make a spot cheaper; for instance, you might find a non-subsidized spot that costs less.
- Evaluate Options: Explore various daycare options, including home daycares or daycare centers, as costs and offerings can vary. Each case is unique, so applying is recommended regardless. Making sure that you have detailed information is important when it comes to the child care system.
- Use Child Care Locator: Before applying, use the Child Care Locator to generate a list of four preferred day care centers. This tool helps you identify centers with or without subsidies, so be mindful of including those offering subsidies in your list.
- Confirmation and File Number: Upon application, expect a confirmation letter or email with your file number. Keep this number safe. If you don’t receive the letter, make a confirmation call to ensure your name is on the waiting list.
- Waiting List Updates: Regularly check the waiting list status. If your name comes up and an available spot aligns with your preferences, the City of Toronto will contact you by phone.
- Spot Availability and Confirmation: Upon receiving notice of an available spot, contact the City of Toronto promptly. Arrange a meeting to confirm and finalize the necessary information for your child’s enrollment.
How to Get a Daycare Subsidy
Even with the $10 a day daycare, costs can add up quick. You may qualify for additional daycare subsidy. You can apply for your daycare subsidy on the City of Toronto website.
Utilize the website’s calculator to determine your eligibility and calculate the childcare expenses you might incur. The calculated amount represents the total daily fee your family must contribute, covering full daycare and before-and-after-school programs.
Timeline for Lowering Fees
In a commitment to enhance affordability for families seeking child care, a phased approach has been implemented to lower average fees in participating licensed child care programs:
- Child care fees for children under the age of six have been reduced by an average of 25%, retroactively applied from April 1, 2022.
- As of December 31, 2022, an additional reduction of 37% in child care fees has been enacted, bringing the provincial average fee to $23 per day, equivalent to 50% of the 2020 fees.
- By September 2025, the objective is to further decrease licensed child care fees to an average of $10 per day.
There are several daycare providers for eligible families to choose from. If you are looking for a child care centre in Toronto, make sure to see if you are eligible for the daycare subsidy. Childcare centres, home-based daycare centres and more are available in Toronto. Make sure you choose the one that fits your child’s needs.
This daycare subsidy can help to give ontario families peace of mind when it comes to finding quality programs at an affordable rate. Lowering daycare fees can help to ensure that young children and school age kids can receive the care they need.