Briefs from the Edmonton Council for Early Learning and Care | Association of Early Childhood Educators of Alberta

Briefs from the Edmonton Council for Early Learning and Care

In 2015, the Mayor’s Task Force for the Elimination of Poverty identified affordable and quality child care as a game-changer for eliminating poverty in Edmonton. The Early Council for Early Learning and Care (ECELC) was convened to take the steps necessary for implementing this action. 

The mandate of the ECELC is to support the development of high-quality early learning and care services in Edmonton with an emphasis on meeting the local needs of low income and vulnerable families. The council has the capacity and the responsibility to collect, analyse, and understand information about current issues that affect early learning and care in Edmonton. 

In response to the COVID pandemic and its effect on the early learning and care sector the council has develop two briefs one entitled "Reopening Early Learning and Care Centres in Alberta: Key Questions and Options" and the other “Family Day Home and Agency Funding and Support: Key Questions and Options.”

The brief entitled "Reopening Early Learning and Care Centres in Alberta: Key Questions and Options" highlights the financial sustainability of early learning and care centres during and after the COVID crisis.  The current situation has implications for whether centres will be able to survive financially and whether the ones that survive will be able to provide affordable, high-quality, and accessible care for young children and their families in Edmonton and Alberta.  In the brief they suggest some options that could be pursued that would help early learning and care centres to thrive so that they can provide affordable, high-quality, and accessible care now and in the future.

The brief entitled "Family Day Home and Agency Funding and Support: Key Questions and Options” highlights particular concerns with the financial sustainability of family day homes during and after the COVID crisis.  The current situation has implications for whether family day homes will be able to survive financially and whether the ones that survive will be able to provide affordable, high-quality, and accessible care for young children and their families.  They have outlined some of the problems.  As is the case for child care centres, the financial burdens fall on the operator, which in turn will likely lead to increased costs (working against affordability), cutting corners (which will work against quality), and/or closures (which will work against accessibility). In the brief they suggest some options, such as designating family day homes as essential services, that could be pursued and that would help family day homes to thrive so that they can provide affordable, high-quality, and accessible care now and in the future.

In response to the COVID pandemic and its effect on the early learning and care sector the council has develop a third brief entitled "Approved Family Day Home Monitoring and Ratios: Questions and Options” highlights particular concerns with temporary changes to the rules and regulations for family day homes and agencies. The decreased in-person monitoring and increased ratios introduced as a result of the COVID crisis have implications for young children and their families in day homes across Edmonton and Alberta.  We have outlined some of the key concerns around these changes to monitoring procedures and ratios for care, which are important quality-enhancing requirements for family day homes. In the brief we suggest some options that could be pursued and that would help family day homes to thrive so that they can continue to provide high-quality care now and in the future.

Reopening Early Learning and Care Centres in Alberta Family Day Home and Agency Funding Support Approved Family Day Home Monitoring and Ratios: Questions and Options