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Toronto launches opt-in application for licensed operators to get $10-a-day child care

Click to play video: 'Ontario and Ottawa ink deal to reduce child-care costs' Ontario and Ottawa ink deal to reduce child-care costs
WATCH ABOVE: Ontario has become the last province to sign on to the $10/day child-care deal. CEO of Rising Oaks Early Learning, Lori Prospero sheds light on the deal and how it will help parents and child-care facilities. – Mar 29, 2022

The City of Toronto says starting Thursday, all licenced child-care operators in the city can apply to be part of the Canada-wide Early Learning and Child Care (CWELCC) funding program that promises $10-a-day daycare in three years.

In March, the Ontario government inked a $13.2 billion child-care deal with the federal government to deliver $10 a day daycare for parents by September 2025.

Since then, Toronto officials said it had been developing an application processes engaging with more than a thousand child-care operators and home child agencies. That process officially opened up on Thursday.

Read more: Ontario inks $13.2B child-care deal with the feds, $10 a day by September 2025

All licenced child-care programs in Toronto, that serve children under six years old or who turn six before June 30, can apply to the CWELCC to get fee reductions for parents and families.

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The deadline for child-care operators to opt into the CWELCC program is Sept 1.

The City also said once a child-care operator has opted in — and has been approved —  eligible families can expect money back on child-care fees retroactive to April 1.

“Developing policies and the opt-in process for licensed child-care operators for the Canada-Wide Early Learning and Child Care funding program has been complex work, but I am excited that we are at the point where we can begin the application process,” said Shanley McNamee, GM for City of Toronto’s Children Services.

“I encourage all licensed child-care providers to learn more about this funding and consider how it will support the families they serve.”

Read more: High cost of child care in Ontario could persist through the summer

In the proposed plan, Ontario families with children five years old and younger in licensed child-care centres will see fees reduced up to 25 per cent to a minimum of $12 a day, retroactive to April 1. In September 2024, families will see further cost reductions, with the price for child care falling to an average of $10 a day by September 2025.

Ontario was the last jurisdiction in Canada that signed onto the federal government’s plan.

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The $13.2 billion will be delivered over six years, with an additional year of funding of at least $2.9 billion.

— With files from Global News’ Hannah Jackson

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