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The Government of Canada and the Government of Nunavut sign a bilateral agreement on early learning and child care

20 septembre 2017 

News Release

The Government of Canada and the Government of Nunavut sign a bilateral agreement on early learning and child care
More spaces, professional development opportunities and focus on Nunavut’s official languages

September 20, 2017                  Iqaluit, Nunavut           

The Government of Canada is making significant investments in early learning and child care systems to improve the lives of Canadian children and their families. Today, on behalf of the Honourable Jean-Yves Duclos, Minister of Families, Children and Social Development, Adam Vaughan, the Parliamentary Secretary and the Honourable Paul Aarulaaq Quassa, Minister of Education, announced a three-year bilateral agreement that reaffirms their commitment and support of the unique early learning and child care needs of Nunavut. 

The agreement allocates just over $7 million, over three years, to Nunavut for early learning and child care investments. The territory`s funding will focus on early learning and child care programs and services to support parents, families, and communities to ensure the best possible future for children in the territory.

This announcement follows a historic agreement, made on June 12, 2017 by Federal-Provincial/Territorial Ministers Responsible for Early Learning and Child Care on a Multilateral Early Learning and Child Care Framework. The Framework sets the foundation for governments to work towards a shared long-term vision where all children across Canada can experience the enriching environment of quality early learning and child care. The Framework principles include increasing the quality, accessibility, affordability, flexibility, and inclusivity of early learning and child care, with consideration for families that need child care the most.

The bilateral agreement is another step to help ensure that Nunavut children get the best start in life and is supported by long-term Government of Canada investments in early learning and child care announced in Budgets 2016 and 2017, totalling $7.5 billion over 11 years. 

Quotes

“The development of early learning and child care systems is one of the best investments our government is making to strengthen Canadian families, society and the economy. Through the agreement signed with the Government of Nunavut, we will be able to better support parents, families and communities in their efforts to offer their children the best possible future.”
– The Honourable Jean-Yves Duclos, Minister of Families, Children and Social Development

“The Nunavut Department of Education believes in the positive outcomes associated with access to Early Learning and Child Care programs and services. This partnership sets the framework for our governments to work toward a shared long-term vision; one where all young Nunavummiut can have the best possible start in life, and allow them to reach their full potential.”
– The Honourable Paul Aarulaaq Quassa, Minister of Education      

Quick Facts

Federal Budgets 2016 and 2017 proposed to invest $7.5 billion over 11 years, starting in 2017-2018, to support and create more high-quality, affordable child care across the country, particularly for families more in need. Of this investment:

$95 million will go towards closing data gaps to better understand what child care looks like in Canada and track progress;

$100 million will go towards early learning and child care innovation; and

a portion will be dedicated to strengthening culturally appropriate early learning and child care for Indigenous children.

The federal government will work with each province and territory to enter into three-year bilateral agreements that will address the early learning and child care needs unique to its jurisdiction and funding allocation.

Through the bilateral agreements, the Government of Canada will provide provinces and territories with $1.2 billion, over the next three years, for early learning and child care programs. Governments will report annually on progress made in relation to the Framework and bilateral agreements. 

The Department of Education has developed a three-year action plan that identifies four areas for further investment to fit within the parameters of the funding set by the Multilateral Framework.They are:

  • Top-up funding to assist all licensed childcare facilities to help with operations and maintenance costs and as well as maintaining or lowering parental fees.
  • Create child care spaces in underserved communities and re-open previously closed facilities.
  • Territory-wide professional development in early learning and child care and financial literacy.
  • Programming resources and training to develop standardized language and culturally-based program material for facilities.

Associated Links

Multilateral Early Learning and Child Care Framework

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For media enquiries, please contact:

Émilie Gauduchon-Campbell
Press Secretary
Office of the Honourable Jean-Yves Duclos, P.C., M.P.
Minister of Families, Children and Social Development
819-654-5546

Jean Philippe Laprise
Communications Manager
Department of Education
Government of Nunavut
867-975-5649

For general information, please contact:

Media Relations Office
Employment and Social Development Canada
819-994-5559
media@hrsdc-rhdcc.gc.ca

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Backgrounder

CANADA–NUNAVUT EARLY LEARNING AND CHILD CARE AGREEMENT

On June 12, 2017, Federal, Provincial and Territorial Ministers Responsible for Early Learning and Child Care signed a Multilateral Early Learning and Child Care Framework. This is a significant milestone in which governments agree to work together to address some of the key early learning and child care issues across the country.

Governments will work towards achieving the shared long-term vision of the Framework where all children across Canada can experience the enriching environment of quality early learning and child care. They have committed to increase the quality, accessibility, affordability, flexibility and inclusivity of early learning and child care with consideration for families that need child care the most.

The implementation of this framework, and a separate Indigenous Early Learning and Child Care Framework to be co-developed with Indigenous peoples, is supported by federal investments announced in Budgets 2016 and 2017, totaling $7.5 billion over 11 years. Through bilateral agreements, the Government of Canada will provide provinces and territories with $1.2 billion, over three years, that outline the unique early learning and child care needs that will be addressed and funding allocation for each jurisdiction.

The Governments of Canada and Nunavut have signed an early learning and child care bilateral agreement. Through this bilateral agreement, the Government of Nunavut will receive just over $7 million, over three years, for investments towards operations and maintenance funding, creation of child care spaces in underserved communities, greater training and professional development opportunities of the early learning and child care workforce and the development of learning and teaching resources and programming materials in all of Nunavut’s official languages.

By the end of the three-year agreement, this funding will:

  • early learning and child care programs are of high quality;
  • support the training and professional development of the early learning and child care workforce;
  • support the delivery of early learning and child care programming in every community;
  • acknowledge and recognize the importance of early learning and child care and its educators; and
  • promote and resource early learning and child care to enable and support greater use of Inuktut.