The Government of Manitoba has announced how it intends to move forward on the report of the Manitoba Early Learning and Commission. The report was commissioned to provide direction on how to introduce universal early learning and child care for Manitoba by creating 12,000 new spaces over 5 – 7 years.
The recommendations are part of a comprehensive policy framework to guide implementation, and include governance, access, affordability, quality, human resources, and data collection.
MCCA is most excited that government has committee to introduce a provincial salary scale beginning September 1, 2016. We believe that government should ensure all child care centre employees earn a salary range reflective of classification, job, and years of experience according to our research based Market Competitive Salary Guideline Scale for Early Learning and Child Care Centres, 2015 – 2016. Page 72 of the Commission Report says that “Manitoba should introduce a provincial wage scale that is incorportated into a new funding formula for licensed centres that recognizes…….recommended wage levels as proposed by the MCCA Competitive Market Wage.”
We believe the plan to move school age child care (6-12) to school divisions needs a careful approach to ensure families continue to have access to the hours of care and days of care they need, affordable fees, subsidy for low income families, skilled staff, and safe, quality care. The Province has committed to pilot this new model in 2 school divisions initially – Seine River and Seven Oaks. MCCA will work with government to ensure child care is represented in developing the transition plans and that support is provided to centres to replace school age spaces with infant and preschool spaces. Pages 22 – 25 of the Commission Report outlines several phases to follow in the transition to ensure there is a process for communication, consultation, and collaboration.
-reprinted from Manitoba Child Care Association