About 60% of children under the age of 6 participated in some form of formal or informal child care in the previous three months. This represented almost 1.4 million young children. The type and quality of non-parental child care in the early years has been linked to healthy childhood development and school readiness.
Findings from the new Survey on Early Learning and Child Care Arrangements are now available. This survey, which was collected from mid-January to mid-February 2019, was designed to inform policies aimed at ensuring Canadians have affordable, accessible and quality child care options for their young children. The survey fills an important data gap on the use of various child care arrangements across Canada.
Early learning and child care arrangements include any form of care for children, formal or informal, by someone other than their parent or guardian. Examples include the use of daycare facilities, in-home care by a relative or non-relative, as well as before and after school programs. Occasional babysitting or kindergarten were excluded from the survey.