The Region of Waterloo argues that a quality assurance program called “Raising the Bar” will prevent corporate child care from coming to the community. Unfortunately, that is simply not the case. Quality assurance programs are one way that muncipalities try to make sure public funds to child care are well spent – that a child care centre has higher standards than the minimum of the Day Nursuries Act. However, considering studies have shown that, on average, not-for-profit child care is higher quality, the Region could also ensure quality by ensuring that public funding go to not-for-profit child care centres, rather than any company trying to make money off of child care as a business.
From the Chronicle: “Waterloo regional Coun. Sean Strickland, the chair of the region’s community services committee, said everyone is concerned about the big-box model of day-care delivery as established by the ABC Learning Centres in Australia. But the policies they’ve put in place have safeguards against that type of service provider coming to the community.
“We have a mixed system right now and all of them are providing a pretty good quality of child care regardless if they are for profit or not for profit,” said Strickland.
The region is also asking for those centres who apply for subsidies to meet a new standard that should raise the overall quality of care.
“We’ve decided to put into place something called raise the bar quality initiative,” said Strickland. “Right now child-care providers in the region can participate in this on a voluntary basis. With the policy we’ve put into place that is no longer voluntary, it’s compulsory.”
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