Due to significant demand for the child care subsidy, there are currently higher than normal wait times. To learn how to apply for the subsidy or start the application process, see below.
Canada-Wide Early Learning and Child Care System
On March 28, 2022, the Federal and Provincial Governments announced a new funding agreement that will reduce the average cost of child care in Ontario.
Families will pay lower fees if their provider chooses to enroll in the CWELCC system, and their children are eligible.
As of December 31, 2022, child care providers enrolled in the CWELCC System must 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.
The Province will introduce additional fee reductions by September 2024, with a final reduction by September 2025 to an average of $10 a day.
- 88% of Halton’s licensed child care programs (child care centres and home child care agencies) are enrolled in the CWELCC System. There are currently 272 sites representing a total of 18,332 spaces that are part of the CWELCC System in Halton.
- Child care fees have been reduced by 52.75% from March 2022 rates across CWELCC programs in Halton, providing significant savings for families.
- Parental contributions for families receiving fee subsidy for child care have also been reduced by 50%.
- Funding has been provided to ensure RECEs are paid at the 2023 wage floor of $19/hour for RECE program staff and $21/hour for RECE supervisors and RECE home visitors, and to support a $1 per hour wage increase in 2023.
- More than 1,000 RECEs benefitted from increased wages as a result of CWELCC annual increase and wage floor funding in 2023.
Approved child care providers
For a list of child care providers in Halton approved to participate in the Canada-wide system, please select your community below.
2023 CWELCC Growth and Participation
For 2023, Halton Region was provided with a directed growth space allocation by the Province which outlines the number of spaces Halton is permitted to add in the CWELCC system. The directed growth allocation specifies how many community-based spaces and school-based spaces can be created for each year of the CWELCC agreement, up to 2026.
Community-based spaces are located anywhere outside of schools. Halton was provided with 190 spaces for 2023. The 190 spaces in 2023 have already been allocated to child care providers who opted into CWELCC in 2022, and whose enrollment was delayed until early 2023.
The next allocation of community-based spaces is anticipated to be 347 spaces in 2026. Space allocations will be reviewed annually with the Ministry of Education.
School-based spaces are those that are located in schools, and are determined through Ministry of Education’s capital planning process. Halton will be able to add 792 school based spaces by 2026, through school-based, child care construction projects which are already planned and underway.
Enrollment for additional child care providers to join the system is currently closed as there is no provincial funding to support growth of the CWELCC system at this time.
Only families with eligible children enrolled in participating child care programs will receive lower fees. If your licensed child centre or licensed home child care agency does not participate, your provider is not required to lower your child care fees.
All eligible children receiving licensed home child care at a premises overseen by an agency are eligible for fee reductions (both agency-placed and privately-placed children).
Fee reduction funding is intended to support children under the age of six. Fees must be reduced for eligible children, which includes:
- Any child, until the last day of the month in which the child turns six years old (irrespective of the type of licensed child care program in which they are enrolled).
- Up until June 30 in a calendar year, any child who:
- turns six years old between January 1 and June 30 in that calendar year; and
- is enrolled in a licensed infant, toddler, preschool, or kindergarten group, a licensed family age group, or home child care.
Child Care Fees and Reductions
As of December 31, 2022, participating sites are required to reduce their child care fees by 52.75 per cent from their March 2022 rates to a minimum of $12 per day.
Child care providers that enroll in the CWELCC System in 2023 will receive funding only for the portion of the year between the enrollment date and December 31, 2023, with no funding provided towards retroactive rebates.
There are two types of child care fees: base fees and non-base fees.
Base fees are mandatory costs that parents/caregivers must pay to receive child care. This includes anything a child care provider is required to provide under the Child Care and Early Years Act, 2014, and any items or services that are part of the fee outlined in the operator’s Parent Handbook. Base fees are eligible for fee reductions.
Non-base fees are optional items or services that parents/caregivers are not required to pay to receive child care. For example, where a separate fee is charged for optional music classes. Non-base fees are not eligible for fee reductions.
Further information about base and non-base fees are available in the CWELCC Halton Region Guidelines for Child Care Operators 2023 (PDF file).
Families receiving fee subsidy
If your family has a child under the age of six in receipt of fee subsidy, effective December 31, 2022 or the date of enrollment of your provider in 2023, you will see your parental contribution amounts reduced by 50% from the parental contribution charged prior to your child care provider’s participation in the CWELCC System.
If your child care provider does not participate in the CWELCC System, you will continue to receive your current fee subsidy without any change to your parental contribution.
Frequently Asked Questions
- My child care centre wants to enroll in the CWELCC System. When will they be able to enroll?
Enrollment for additional child care operators to join the system is currently closed as there is no provincial funding to support growth of the CWELCC System in Halton at this time.
Halton Region will continue to advocate to the provincial government for additional funding to support expansion of CWELCC spaces in Halton to meet demand.
- If my child care provider opts out of the CWELCC System or is not approved by Halton Region to participate, are they required to tell me?
Yes. Child care providers must tell parents if they opt out of the CWELCC System or are not approved by the Region to enroll.
- I have questions or concerns about my CWELCC fee reductions, who should I talk to?
Please contact your child care provider with any questions or concerns about your fee reductions.
- How can I find child care providers who have enrolled in the CWELCC System?
A list of child care providers in Halton approved to participate in the CWELCC System is available.
For additional information about child care options in Halton contact the Child Care Directory and Information Line service (external link).