Canada-Wide Early Learning and Child Care

Ontario has entered into a Canada-Wide Early Learning and Child Care agreement (CWELCC) that will lower fees to an average of $10.00 per day for children five years and younger in licensed child care by September 2025.

Licensed child care providers can choose to participate in the CWELCC to help reduce fees. If your licensed child care provider does not participate, your fees will not be reduced. Camps and Authorized Recreation programs are not eligible to participate in this program.

What this means for parents

Parents or guardians of children five years of age and younger do not have to apply to receive a child care fee reduction.

You may be eligible for reduced fees if:

  • your licensed child care provider chooses to enroll in the CWELCC, and
  • you pay more than $12.00 per day for child care: and
  • your child is:
    • five years of age and younger, or
    • six years old and enrolled in a licensed preschool, kindergarten or family age group or a licensed home child care premises, until June 30

The amount that you will save depends on the current fees your child care provider charges.

It will require some time for your child care program to enroll in the new system. The fee reduction will be retroactive to April 1, 2022. This means that you will be eligible to receive a refund for the higher fees you have paid after your child care program is fully enrolled.

Your child care provider will be in touch with you as to whether they enter an agreement with the CWELCC and when you can expect to receive your retroactive fee reduction payment if they have enrolled in the program.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is National Child Care / $10 per day child care / Canada-wide Early Learning and Child Care?
  • The Federal Government of Canada and the Provincial Government of Ontario signed an agreement in March 2022 to make child care more affordable for Ontario residents. The agreement is called the “Canada-wide Early Learning and Child Care Agreement” (CWELCC).
  • Eligible families can expect to receive a 25% rebate on child care fee paid retroactive to April 1 2022 before the end of 2022.
  • In early 2023 child care fees will be reduced by another 25% (making a 50% total reduction in fees from March 2022).
How do I know if I am eligible?
  • In order to be eligible for a retroactive rebate and ongoing fee reduction, the following criteria must be met:
    • Child attends a CWELCC-participating child care site
    • You pay more than $12 per day for child care (unless your child is in a fee subsidy placement and you pay a parental contribution amount. In this case you are eligible for a 25% rebate on your parental contribution, retroactive to April 1 2022); and
    • Child is under the age of 6
      • Children who turn 6 between January 1 and June 30th, and who are enrolled in a kindergarten, family age group or a licensed home child care premises, are eligible until June 30th of the year they turned 6.
      • Children who turn 6 between July 1 and December 31 are eligible until the last day of the month in which they turn 6.
How do I know if my provider has enrolled in CWELCC?
  • Child care agencies must provide communication to parents/guardians regarding:
    • A) Their decision to opt-in or out of CWELCC; and
    • B) The outcome of their opt-in application (e.g., whether or not their application was successful).
    • If you have not heard from your child care provider, contact them to confirm whether they are planning to opt in or opt out of the CWELCC system.
      • The deadline for child care providers to opt-in to the CWELCC system is November 1, 2022.
    • Implementation is an ongoing process. Child care providers who have opted into CWELCC will be enrolled by the end of 2022.
When can I get my rebate?
  • Rebates will be issued by child care providers to families no later than December 31, 2022.
  • As some child care providers are opting into CWELCC earlier than others, some families may receive rebates earlier than others. 
  • Rest assured that if your child is eligible, and attends a CWELCC-participating site, you will receive your rebate and it will be retroactive to April 1, 2022.
  • Rebates may be paid out, or issued in the form of a credit. This is at the discretion of the child care provider.
Will this new system impact the other rebates or subsidies I am currently eligible for?
  • The child care tax credit will continue for eligible families.
  • The Ontario child care fee subsidy program will continue to be available for families who are eligible.
Why hasn’t my child care signed on?
 
  • The decision to opt-in or out of the CWELCC system is at the discretion of individual child care providers.
  • Contact your child care provider if you haven’t heard whether they have opted in or out.
  • Contact your child care provider to learn more about their decision to opt out.
Why can’t I get the lower rates if I attend private home child care?
  • Only licensed child care programs are eligible to receive CWELCC funding, as per the agreement between the Federal Government of Canada and the Provincial Government of Ontario.
  • Beginning in November, families can use OneList to see which local child care sites are enrolled and which sites are not enrolled in CWELCC.
Where can I find more information?
  • Visit the Ontario Government website.
  • Contact your child care provider to get more specific information related to their decision to opt-in or out and timelines for rebates and fee reduction.