While few question the benefits of Pascal's early learning recommendations, Ontario day-care operators and school boards are anxious about the haste with which the government is implementing the first phase of the program.
About 35,000 four-and five-year- olds will be among the first classes. Full-day learning will be offered at nine local schools in the fall. Under the new plan, teachers will work with early childhood educators in the classroom.
But many questions about how the program will work remain unanswered. School boards have been told they must provide before-and after-school care for these young students, but not how administration and operating costs for the after-hours service will be covered. Cash-strapped school boards also don't know who will cover extra expenses for lighting, heating, transportation and school cleaning, and how care will be provided on non-school days, including PA days, March Break and during the summer.
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