For families with young children, access to child care is critically important. When more parents have access to affordable child care, they can make the choice to return to work. In this Budget, Ontario is making an additional investment of more than $2.2 billion over three years to increase access to child care and increase affordability for more families.

Before- and After-School Care

Giving families with children up to age 12 better access to before- and after-school care programs by requiring school boards to provide programs in most elementary schools.

Free Preschool Child Care

Providing more affordable quality child care for families by introducing free preschool child care for children aged two-and-a-half until they are eligible for kindergarten, building on the savings families get from full-day kindergarten.

More Child Care Spaces

Helping over 100,000 kids access high-quality child care — and offering additional financial support to families with subsidies for approximately 60 per cent of all new spaces.

Free preschool

Ontario is:

  • Saving families an average of $17,000 per child by making preschool child care completely free for children aged two-and-a-half until they are eligible for kindergarten, beginning September 2020.
  • Investing $534 million over the next six years to build 10,000 preschool child care spaces in schools and 4,000 community-based spaces to ensure there is appropriate capacity.
  • Investing $1.6 billion over five years in capital funding to create 45,000 new licensed child care spaces across the province.

Increasing access and improving the child care system

Ontario is:

  • Delivering an additional $2.2 billion over three years to increase access to child care and increase affordability for more Ontario families.
  • Providing more than 1,800 children and their families in First Nation communities with improved, culturally relevant child care, and child and family programs.
  • Providing First Nation communities with $40 million over three years in additional funding for new and existing child care programs on-reserve.
  • Supporting child care professionals by increasing their wages and investing in hiring, retention and professional development.
  • Developing a wage grid to guarantee that high-quality child care continues to be delivered by engaged and knowledgeable educators.
Updated: March 28, 2018
Published: March 28, 2018