D'Amato: With child care in schools, all’s well that ends well

The Record

Sometimes, a wrenching thunderstorm gives you beautiful flowers afterwards. That's what happened with child care that's offered in public schools.  The board wanted all the before- and after-school business so that they could use the revenue from bigger schools in new suburbs to help pay for marginal-demand sites at smaller schools in poorer neighbourhoods. The child-care agencies were concerned that if the school board started to run these programs for the lucrative four- to seven-year-olds, they wouldn't be able to continue providing all-day care at other sites for the more expensive infants and toddlers. There are now about 3,100 children locally whose care — in and out of the schools — is paid for by government subsidies. Of the 80 elementary schools that now offer before- and after-school care, 64 of them — 80 per cent — are operated by the board. Local non-profit providers operate the service at the remaining 16 sites.

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