Chinazor is an Early Childhood Educator in Victoria, British Columbia and a member of the CCCABC Wage Grid Committee. She has a message about the importance of a fair province-wide wage grid for educators. Please watch...
Evaluation of Early Care and Learning Recruitment and Retention Strategy
In 2018, British Columbia launched the Early Care and Learning Recruitment and Retention Strategy (ECL R&R Strategy). It is part of a larger ten‐year (“Childcare BC”) plan, to increase the quality, affordability, and availability of child care spaces in British Columbia. Its initial $136m investment included many tactics such as the wage enhancement and supports for professional development. While they have been expanded in various ways since 2018, it remains with its original intent. It seeks to meet the following three overarching long‐term goals:
- An adequate and stable workforce comprised of qualified and skilled early care and learning professionals
- Early care and learning as a viable, sustainable, and valued career
- Appropriate compensation plans and human resource strategies.
The Ministry of Advanced Education and Skills Training (AEST) simultaneously engaged the Early Childhood Educators of BC (ECEBC) to lead an evaluation. The goal was to enable a mechanism for regular sector feedback on the overarching impacts of the ECL R&R Strategy. ECEBC selected Social Research and Demonstration Corporation (SRDC) to undertake the sector-led evaluation.
This evaluation report for 2021 includes project results and lessons to the end of 2021. It includes the project management work plan and a report on Sector Steering Committee activities. It updates the implementation of the evaluation methodology. These include tentative plans for the extension of the evaluation to cover 2022 and 2023.
- Read the full report here.
- Download the summary infographics below:
Media Release December 9, 2022
New Federal Legislation for Child Care: It’s been a long time coming!
52 years after the Royal Commission on the Status of Women in Canada first recommended a national day care act, we are now on the brink of seeing that vision set out in law. Times have changed since 1970! Families today know that high-quality child care provides social and economic benefits, and they need access to affordable, inclusive programs more than ever before.
Over a decade ago the Coalition of Child Care Advocates of BC and the Early Childhood Educators of BC partnered to develop the $10aDay Child Care Plan - and now we see federal legislation that proposes to enshrine the vision of $10aDay across Canada.
“We celebrate the introduction of Bill C-35, the Canada Early Learning and Child Care Act, which sets out the federal government’s vision for a Canada-wide, community-based early learning and child care system” said $10aDay researcher Lynell Anderson, “and we applaud the federal government’s important commitment to upholding Indigenous rights and jurisdiction in the legislation.”
Sharon Gregson, spokesperson for the $10aDay Child Care campaign, points out the legislation confirms a federal commitment to long-term funding for child care. “Over the last few years, BC has invested significant provincial funds on the road to $10aDay” she noted. “With new federal funding in place, BC is accelerating progress towards a system that meets the diverse needs of families and values early childhood education professionals.”
“The new legislation confirms federal funds will continue to prioritize expansion of non-profit and public programs,” notes Emily Mlieczko, on behalf of the Early Childhood Educators of BC. “Bill C-35 also supports key priorities in BC, which includes implementing fair compensation to support educators in their multifaceted work while ensuring families pay no more than $10aDay for child care.”
We fully support a Canada-wide system of early learning and child care that strengthens policy frameworks and funding agreements in alignment with the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, as well as Canada’s international obligations under the Convention on the Rights of the Child, the Convention on the Elimination of all Forms of Discrimination Against Women and the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.
The need for a province-wide fair wage grid with a focus on Indigenous rights and reconciliation.
In British Columbia we are celebrating the measurable progress achieved in our province since 2018 towards creating a $10aDay child care system to meet the needs of children, families, communities, and the economy.
After decades of neglect there is of course much more to do - but - child care in our province is increasingly more affordable with the rapid expansion of $10aDay sites, and significant fee reductions in other programs. There are thousands more licensed spaces across the province, and early childhood educators have a $4/hour publicly funded wage enhancement. Importantly, there are new investments with First Nations, Métis Nation and in Aboriginal Head Start for the expansion of Indigenous-led programs, with affordable fees, and improved educator wages.
These important milestones reflect provincial and federal policy and funding commitments to achieve a quality $10aDay system. A system that ensures culturally safe child care services reflecting Indigenous rights, jurisdiction, and worldviews that strengthen the gifts of children, families, and communities. A system that must prioritize increased access for all Indigenous children, including those living away from their home nations to their languages and cultures.
However, the main obstacle to expanding access to licensed child care and achieving quality goals is a shortage of early childhood educators and other child care professionals. It’s a problem that requires much more significant action than is reflected in the government's current recruitment and retention strategies. The lack of qualified educators today is preventing many existing programs from operating at full capacity and is an obvious barrier to achieving the expansion required to ensure child care is available for all families who choose it.
With BC’s adoption of the Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples Act it is especially vital to encourage and sustain Indigenous educators within the growing child care sector. As so clearly stated by the Metro Vancouver Aboriginal Executive Council, we must move towards restoration and reconciliation while prioritizing the implementation of trauma informed practices within our services in order to create cultural safety. And, to further advance decolonized funding structures by providing more than a “living wage” to Indigenous staff we must provide them with a thriving wage so that families can transcend conditions of scarcity.
A province-wide publicly funded and fair wage grid for educators, as recommended by the Coalition of Child Care Advocates of BC and Early Childhood Educators of BC, along with allies such as the Metro Vancouver Aboriginal Executive Council, needs to be the next milestone in BC as we lead the way on implementing $10aDay child care across Canada.
After decades of undervaluing child care professionals by making their compensation largely reliant on parent fees, the 2021 Canada-wide Early Learning and Child Care Agreement commits the Government of BC to develop a wage grid for educators. Now is the time for us all to advocate for BC Budget 2023 to transition the current ECE wage enhancement into a competitive province-wide wage grid for the child care sector, learning from the wage grids implemented by BC Aboriginal Child Care Society and Aboriginal Head Start Association of BC.
Together we advocate - together we make progress.
Indigenous Early Learning Child Care Planner at Metro Vancouver Aboriginal Executive Council
Spokesperson $10aDay Child Care Campaign with the Coalition of Child Care Advocates of BC
November 30th, 2022
Celebrating and Supporting Educators
We’re at a historic moment for child care. Promises by the BC and federal governments to build a quality $10aDay Child Care system are becoming reality. The number of life-changing $10aDay spaces is steadily increasing, as are fee reductions for families not yet in a $10aDay program. There is more to do! The next urgent step is to compensate professionals in the sector with a fair provincial WAGE GRID recognizing credentials and years of experience!
BC needs to recognize educators in child care programs as professionals with a fair, provincial, publicly funded wage grid NOW!
For the November 30 Day of Action, we’re calling on government to ensure all educators in child care programs:
- Are paid professional wages and benefits, based on a provincially funded wage grid, in line with their qualifications, experience and crucial role in society - just like K-12 teachers - to help solve the recruitment and retention problem.
- Have paid time dedicated to professional development and advancement of BC’s Early Learning Framework and Indigenous Early Learning and Child Care Framework.
- Are supported to enter the profession through tuition-free access to public post-secondary programs, student loan waivers and ongoing bursaries.
On November 30 across BC and Canada there will be many ways to celebrate educators and push for a fair wage grid. We encourage you to add your voice: create signs and post them on social media and tag #childcaredayofaction, hold an open house at your program and invite local politicians, give the educators in your program a special treat … lots of ideas, and we can provide t-shirts, buttons, stickers!
The Canada-wide Day of Action is supported by Child Care Now (Child Care Advocacy Association of Canada) www.childcarenow.ca sign the petition now.
The $10aDay campaign strives to advance our goal of an inclusive, equitable and accessible child care system in ways that reflect the values and culture of the system we are advocating for. This means we are committed to reconciliation, diversity, equity, and inclusion.
As the BC and federal governments are now — finally! — beginning to implement their significant child care commitments, it is important that our advocacy works to include the diversity of BC families, children, and educators. We are committed to centring voices that have historically been excluded from our work and the broader BC women’s movement. We are taking concrete steps to include the lived experiences of families, children, and educators who identify as Black, Indigenous, People of Colour, 2SLGBTQIA+ and persons with disabilities.
As part of this commitment, we conducted a $10aDay Supporter Survey to better understand the extent to which $10aDay supporters reflect the diversity of BC families, children, and educators, and to identify supporters' priorities for making BC's child care system more inclusive.Read more
MEDIA RELEASE September 23, 2022
Child Care gets More Affordable in BC — Great News for Families
Promise made, promise kept. One year ago, BC signed the Canada-wide child care agreement promising to significantly reduce fees by December 2022. Today, the BC government delivered on that promise.
For families with young children, child care fees are often their second biggest expense after housing. The announcement today is a major step toward ensuring all families who choose child care pay no more than $10aDay. “This is a welcome investment in BC families and BC’s economy,” said Researcher Lynell Anderson.
Publicly funded fee reductions for the families of infants and toddlers in centre-based care are increasing from $350 to $900 per month — and the fee reduction for 3–5-year-olds in centre-based care is increasing from $100 to $545 per month. There are similar reductions for families using family and multi-age care. “This fee reduction is meaningful for our family” confirms mother of two young children, Sara Langlois. “It will significantly reduce the pressure on our family’s finances.”
Today’s announcement of increased affordability for families is in addition to the expansion of $10aDay to 12,500 spaces across the province.
But too many families are still struggling to find a child care space — affordable or not. So, it’s more good news that capital funding is available to expand non-profit, public, and Indigenous child care programs. “We recommend a planned approach, with child care included in all schools and public buildings” confirms $10aDay spokesperson Sharon Gregson.
However, the biggest child care challenge right now is the recruitment and retention of qualified early childhood educators. “The $4/hour publicly funded wage enhancement is certainly helpful but needs to transition to a fair, province-wide wage grid, with benefits, as part of improved compensation for early childhood care and education professionals,” said Emily Mlieczko of ECEBC.
We applaud today’s announcement and look forward to ongoing progress toward full implementation of the $10aDay child care system BC wants and needs.
Send a message to BC’s Minister of Education and Child Care @JM_Whiteside telling her we need school-age child care in every elementary school, for every family who chooses it.
This week, federal, provincial and territorial first ministers, with primary responsibility for early learning and child care, gathered in British Columbia to discuss progress made in the first year since the signing of the first Canada-Wide Early Learning and Child Care agreement. Open letters from Child Care Now and the Canadian Child Care Federation urge ministers responsible for early learning and child care to make the child care workforce crisis a top priority in the coming year by developing a comprehensive workforce strategy that addresses compensation and working conditions of the Canada-wide child care workforce.