The child care funding agreement between the Government of Canada and the Government of Alberta signed last week and the more than $3 billion federal transfer to the province sets the stage for big reductions in parent fees, a major expansion of not-for-profit and public child care services, and solutions to the ongoing problem of recruiting and retaining qualified staff in the sector. However, how the Alberta government will fulfil its obligations is still not clear. With this in mind, child care advocates have released their policy recommendations for building a transformed system of child care that puts children at the centre and also meets the needs of families, especially mothers of young children who end up paying the biggest price when they do not have the supports they need to participate fully in the paid labour force.
The Roadmap to a Quality Early Learning and Child Care System in Alberta was developed through a partnership between the Canadian Child Care Federation, Muttart Foundation, YMCA of Northern Alberta, and Child Care Now, and in consultation with a broad spectrum of organizations and individuals who have particular knowledge and experience with child care.
Alberta’s Roadmap identifies and explores four key elements to building a robust and responsive child care system:
- Ideas and vision
- Public policy, planning, and management
- Workforce development and support
The partners behind the Roadmap will continue to work together to inform all those who have a stake in the future of child care in Alberta about the proposed policy options and to engage broad diverse public support for change.