Media Release May 2, 2017 Statement on Child Care in Schools:
The recent Supreme Court ruling on classroom size and composition means that there will now be more teachers and smaller classes in BC schools. That’s great news! But, as a result, recent news stories indicate that some school-based child care programs are being shut out of their existing space in schools to meet the increased demand for classrooms. Once again, the BC Liberal government failed to prioritize and plan for the needs of BC families in these child care programs.
“We don’t bump Grade 1 children out of a school when enrollment goes up” says Sharon Gregson, spokesperson for the $10aDay Campaign. “We expand to meet demand by building new schools and adding portables where necessary. The same must be so for child care programs.” It’s important to note that thirty-one school districts across BC – the majority of BC school districts – support the $10aDay Plan because they recognize the vital link between early childhood education, school-age child care, family support and children’s school success (see http://www.10aday.ca/endorse).
The $10aDay Plan addresses 3 key areas of action needed to solve the BC child care crisis. It lowers fees, improves quality and creates more spaces.
The $10aDay Plan also expects all stakeholders - including local and provincial governments, school districts, community groups and parents – to work together to prioritize and plan for the child care needs of families and increase the number of licensed spaces as required.
In the short term, clearly there should be an immediate emergency stakeholder meeting in every school district where school-based child care spaces are at risk. Public partners and community stakeholders should collaborate to find space for child care, which may require creative approaches to existing public spaces. This action should be supported by a commitment from the provincial government to immediately invest in renovating facilities as necessary to make space available and appropriate.
“The BC Liberal government has allowed the child care crisis to worsen every year. The result is that children, their families, and the B.C. economy are not being well served. This is yet one more example of the previous governments’ failure to be accountable for the current child care chaos” says Lynell Anderson, CPA, CGA and co-author of the socio-economic impact analysis of the $10aDay child care plan for British Columbia.
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Contact: Lynell Anderson 604-313-6904 or Sharon Gregson 604-505-5725