McGuinty Government Launches Online Guide to Licensed Provincial Child Care



    New Resource Helps Parents Make Informed Decisions About Child Care

    QUEEN'S PARK, ON, Aug. 16 /CNW/ - The McGuinty government has launched a
website to help parents make informed decisions about child care, Minister of
Children and Youth Services Mary Anne Chambers announced today.
    "When parents place their children, and their trust, in a licensed child
care program, there is no room for compromise," said Chambers. "This is a new
tool to help parents find information on licensed child care so they can be
confident in the well-being of their children."
    The site is easily accessible at www.ontario.ca/licensedchildcare. A
search tool allows parents to search for child care by city, postal code, type
of program, age group, program name, operator name or language of service
delivery. The site also provides the status of the licence of any licensed
program parents might be considering or about which they might be concerned.
The ministry will enhance the site in future with additional resources for
parents.
    This initiative supports Best Start, the government's plan for child
care, early learning and healthy development to help make sure Ontario's
children are ready to achieve success in school when they enter Grade 1. In
July, the government announced a first-of-its-kind regulatory College of Early
Childhood Educators as part of its commitment to support excellence in early
learning and child care and maintain professional standards for child care
professionals. Other government investments supporting Ontario's young
children and their families include:

    
    -   An additional $142.5 million this year to enhance and strengthen the
        government's Best Start program and sustain 7,374 licensed childcare
        spaces, including 300 new licensed and culturally-appropriate child
        care spaces for Aboriginal children in targeted off-reserve
        communities
    -   Creating more than 22,000 new Best Start licensed child care spaces
        province-wide over the past 2 years
    -   Streamlining the eligibility process for child care fee subsidies
        based on family net income so more families are now eligible
    -   Increasing support for Ontario's student nutrition program to ensure
        that more than 361,000 elementary and secondary students received
        healthy, nutritious meals and snacks this school year - an increase
        of nearly 15 per cent over the previous school year
    -   More support to children in vulnerable families through an expanded
        Healthy Babies Healthy Children program
    -   More support for the health and well-being of children through the
        $2.1 billion five-year investment in the Ontario Child Benefit, which
        provides low-income families with a one-time down payment of up to
        $250 per child in 2007, growing to a maximum of $1,100 annually per
        child by 2011

     "We've listened to parents who want to know that their children are safe
and well looked after by well-trained professionals when they are in licensed
child care facilities," said Chambers. "This initiative responds to their
concerns and is part of our government's continuing plan for high quality,
affordable child care."


    Disponible en français

                           www.children.gov.on.ca
    





For further information:

For further information: Tricia Edgar, Minister's Office, (416)
212-7161, (416) 571-7247 (Cell); Anne Machowski-Smith, Ministry of Children
and Youth Services, (416) 325-5156

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ONTARIO MINISTRY OF CHILDREN AND YOUTH SERVICES

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