Daycare reopening in Ontario: What changes parents can expect

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The Ontario government announced child care centres will be able to resume services on Friday, June 12, 2020.

Specific requirements must in place for these operators, these include:

  • Cohorting ― putting children and staff in groups of 10 or less day over day

  • COVID-19 response plan ― all child care settings will be required to have a plan in place if a child, parent or staff member/provider is exposed to COVID-19

  • Screening ― all staff and children must be screened prior to entry to the child care setting. Anyone feeling unwell must stay home

  • Daily attendance records ― child care settings must keep daily records of all attendees in order to support contact tracing

  • Cleaning ― child care settings must be thoroughly cleaned before opening and frequently thereafter

  • No visitors ― only essential visitors are permitted entry into the child care setting

  • Implementing drop-off and pick-up protocols in a way that facilitates physical distancing

Stephen Lecce, Ontario’s Minister of Education, said he expects some parents in the province will choose to keep their children at home for the time being, assisting child care providers with staying in the capacity limits. Lecce added anyone to chooses to keep their children at home will not not lose their spot and will not have to pay for the service they are not using.

When asked if any additional financial assistance will be given to child care operators, the Minister of Education said there are already tools in place to support these centres, including the wage subsidy program, commercial rent assistance and additional support from the Ministry of Education for fixed costs.

Ontario’s day camps will also be able to resume operations this summer, while overnight camps remain restricted.