Ontario gives additional $234 million for safe reopening of childcare centres

Aug 7 2020, 7:28 am

The Province of Ontrio, in partnership with the federal government, is providing $234.6 million in funding for the safe reopening of childcare centres.

On Friday, Premier Ford and Education Minister Stephen Lecce said the funding will help support enhanced cleaning costs as well as health and safety requirements set out to support the reopening of licensed child care and early years programs.

“My number one priority is the health and safety of our children. Thanks to our federal partners, we’re putting over $230 million on the table as part of the Safe Restart Agreement to help deliver our plan to reopen child care safely at full capacity in September,” said Ford.

“With these additional supports in place, we have the best plan anywhere in the country, informed by the best medical advice and science available. Parents can have peace of mind knowing that every measure has been taken to keep their children, and the staff who care for them, safe.”

“We are investing more in child care to ensure it is safe, accessible and affordable for working moms and dads,” said Lecce.

“This agreement will ensure funding continues to flow so that child care remains available to parents as they return to work today and into the future.”

And when asked about the province’s back to school plan, Ford and Lecce reiterated the benefits of their recommendations.

The plan has raised some concern over classroom size for elementary students which will not be reduced for kindergarten to Grade 3.

However, Ford and Lecce have defended their decisions saying it was based on the “best medical minds” and classroom sizes are already the lowest in the country.

They also emphasized that no other plan in the country has mandated students wear masks Grade 4 and up, and that Ontario is investing the most money per student.

On July 30, the announced an additional $309 million funding for schools in order for students to have a conventional five-day week.

However, on Thursday night, Toronto Public Health recommended that the city’s largest school board reduce their class size for better physical distancing, which will reduce virus spread.

Lecce commented that they’ve provided additional funding for the TDSB to enhance safety measures.

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