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N.L. announces expanded measures to help child care providers

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Talks of benefits and pensions for ECEs continuing
Kennedy, Alex
Publication Date: 
17 Apr 2024


The Newfoundland and Labrador government has announced more funding for child-care providers offering spaces for infants, as well as other short-term implementations to support the sector.

Education Minister Krista Lynn Howell said Wednesday the province will fund an additional $30 a day per space for infant care spaces offered by providers participating in the province's operating grant program, which funds regulated child-care centres and some day homes in Newfoundland and Labrador.

The need for more infant spaces was one of four main items that came out of a review of the operating grant. Howell said it's one of the areas of highest demand.


Two other items Howell said could be addressed in the short term are the continuation of two paid leave days for professional development for child-care providers and expanding the number of statutory holidays a provider can receive funding for to 12.


Howell also announced changes to the funding structure of the operating grant program, saying it will put providers on a more level playing field.


There are currently 2,206 early childhood learning and child-care spaces in development with various timelines to opening, according to a press release. More than 1,500 spaces for $10 a day spaces have been created since January 2023.

Pensions and benefits for ECE part of discussions: Howell

Wednesday's announcement comes three weeks after a report from the Newfoundland and Labrador Federation of Labour which said 42 per cent of the province's early childhood educators are considering finding a new job because of low wages and a lack of benefits.


Howell said conversations about pensions and benefits are ongoing.

"That's part of our conversation as we build a workforce and recognize the value that they bring. I think we've moved the dial, but there's still much work to be done," Howell said.