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Child Care Awareness Days OpEd


first_imgChild Care Awareness Days are held the month of June, which gives me the perfect opportunity to share with Nova Scotians some of the work government has undertaken to improve child care in our province. Not long ago, my colleagues and I signed off on updated regulations for the province’s licensed child care centres and family home day cares. Introduced in April, the amended regulations were designed to help child care providers offer children the best possible care in safe and secure environments. Child care centres are far more than babysitting facilities. They are staffed by professionals who help establish the building blocks for lifelong learning, and we know that the early years of a child’s life are vitally important in shaping their futures. Government works very hard to support the child care sector. The last thing we want to do is create difficulty or red tape for those who take on the important responsibility of guiding our children through their early years. With that in mind, we gathered input on how best to update the regulations to ensure children’s safety while minimizing obstacles for providers. We met with more than 100 representatives of the child care sector, including child care centre and family home day care operators, early childhood educators, and other child care staff. That input was invaluable. Based on what we heard, we developed regulations that we believe are clear, fair and will work best for our province. It’s natural that there will still be those who have questions about how changes will affect them. As always, our staff are available to answer those questions and help providers to make the transition as smooth as possible. Ultimately, we all have the same goal: to help give Nova Scotian children the best possible start in life. Government is committed to making life better for Nova Scotians and improving child care is an important part of this. We have already taken steps to show that commitment. We’ve added 250 subsidies to help make child care more affordable, created hundreds of licensed child care spaces, and awarded dozens of loans and grants to help centres expand, enhance their programs and provide staff with professional growth opportunities and improved salaries. We’ll continue working with our partners in the sector to strengthen the quality and accessibility of child care in Nova Scotia. I encourage people to visit www.gov.ns.ca to learn more about how government is making life better for families. -30-last_img

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