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Canada-Wide Early Learning and Child Care (CWELCC) System

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Current Situation

Halton Region is working with local licensed child care centres and licensed home child care agencies to implement the Canada-Wide Early Learning and Child Care (CWELCC) System in Halton.

As of December 31, 2022, child care providers enrolled in the CWELCC System are required to reduce their child care fees for eligible children by 52.75 per cent from their March 2022 rates to a minimum of $12 per day.

Child care providers who apply to enroll in the System and are approved after January 1, 2023 will be required to reduce fees by 52.75 per cent from March 2022 fees, once they are enrolled. They will not be eligible for funding to provide retroactive fee rebates to families.

More information will be made available in 2023 for licensed child care centres and licensed home child care agencies who are interested in applying for participation in CWELCC.

Learn more

Background

On March 28, 2022, the Federal and Provincial Governments announced a funding agreement that will reduce the cost of child care in Ontario to an average of $10 per day by 2025-2026. The Canada-Wide Early Learning and Child Care Agreement includes $13.2 billion for Ontario over six years. This agreement will:

  • Allow licensed child care centres and licensed home child care agencies that opt-in to the system in 2022, to reduce parent/caregiver fees for children under the age of six by 25 per cent, retroactive to April 1, 2022. Participating child care operators will further reduce child care fees by 50 per cent, on average, by January 1, 2023. There will be further fee reductions in 2024 and 2025.
  • Set a minimum wage floor of $18/hour for Registered Early Childhood Educators (RECE) and $20/hour for RECE supervisors and RECE home visitors retroactive to April 1, 2022, increasing $1 per hour each year until 2026, up to a maximum of $25 per hour.
  • Create 86,000 licensed child care spaces in Ontario for children under the age of six by the end of 2026 to meet the growing demand for affordable child care.

Halton Region is working closely with the Ministry of Education and child care providers to implement the Canada-Wide Early Learning and Child Care system to provide more accessible, high-quality child care to families.

Wage Compensation

Child care providers enrolled in the Canada-Wide Early Learning and Child Care (CWELCC) System may be eligible for wage compensation funding to support an annual wage increase and a minimum wage floor for eligible staff.

To be eligible for wage compensation funding, staff must be employed in an eligible position by a child care provider that is enrolled in the CWELCC System. Eligible positions include:

  • RECE Program Staff
  • RECE Child Care Supervisor
  • RECE Home Child Care Visitor

Annual Wage Increase

Child care providers enrolled in the CWELCC System are required to increase the hourly wage of eligible staff by $1/hour, plus benefits, on January 1 of each year from 2023 to 2026, up to a maximum of $25 per hour, including Wage Enhancement Grant.

Wage Floor

The minimum hourly wage floor amounts for RECEs were set by the Province of Ontario and came into effect on April 1, 2022. A new minimum wage floor will come into effect on January 1 of each year. The hourly wage floor amounts for 2022-2026 are noted in the table below:

Table: Minimum Hourly Wage Floor 2022 to 2026

Eligible Positions 2022 2023 2024 2025 2026
RECE Program Staff $18 $19 $20 $21 $22
RECE Child Care Supervisorsor RECE Home Child Care Visitors $20 $21 $22 $23 $24

Minimum Wage Offset

Child care providers enrolled in the CWELCC System may be eligible for minimum wage offset funding for eligible staff.

To be eligible for the minimum wage offset funding, staff must be employed by a child care provider that is participating in the CWELCC System and be in a position as follows:

  • Non-RECE Program Staff
  • Non-RECE Child Care Supervisor
  • Non-RECE Home Child Care Visitor

As of October 1, 2022, child care operators were required to comply with minimum wage legislation and bring the wages of their staff to $15.50 per hour. To offset the minimum wage increase, Halton Region is providing funding to operators enrolled in the CWELCC system to cover the incremental amount needed to bring wages for eligible staff to $15.50/hour.

To be eligible for a minimum wage offset, operators must have employed staff in positions that were earning less than $15.50 per hour on September 30, 2022. Positions created after September 30, 2022, are not eligible.

Please contact please contact our Children’s Services team at childcareservices@halton.ca for questions about wage compensation.

Guidance and Resources

The following information is intended for child care centre owners, operators and staff on the CWELCC system:

Guidelines

For guidance from the Ministry of Education and Halton Region, please review the documents below.

Resources

To find out more information on the CWELCC system, refer to the Provincial and Regional supporting documents below.

Application Information

More information will be made available in 2023 for licensed child care centres and licensed home child care agencies who are interested in applying for participation in CWELCC.

Contact our Children’s Services team

Do you operate or intend to operate a licensed child care centre or licensed home child care agency in Halton? You can email our Children’s Services team with any questions about the CWELCC system at childcareservices@halton.ca.

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