Canada – Manitoba Early Learning and Child Care Agreement – 2021 to 2025

Official title: Canada-Manitoba Early Learning and Child Care Agreement

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List of abbreviations

ABA
Applied Behavioural Analysis
CCA
Child Care Assistant
CCQTC
Child Care Qualifications and Training Committee
COS
Circle of Security
CBA
Competency Based Assessment
ECE
Early Childhood Educator
ELCC
Early Learning and Child Care
FPM
Fédération des parents du Manitoba
MCCA
Manitoba Child Care Association
MCT
Minister’s Consultation Table
RRC
Red River College
RRSP
Registered Retirement Savings Plan
SECD
Science of Early Child Development
TFSA
Tax-Free Savings Account

Canada-Manitoba Early Learning and Child Care Agreement

Between:

Referred to collectively as the “Parties”.

Preamble

Whereas, Canada and Manitoba agreed to a Multilateral Early Learning and Child Care Framework on June 12, 2017 which articulated their shared vision for early learning and child care (ELCC) and describes their approach to achieve this vision.

Whereas, the governments of Canada and Manitoba have committed to work together to further develop child care, in full respect of their responsibilities to their citizens, and recognizing that the Government of Manitoba is responsible for the design and delivery of early learning and child care programs and services in the Province of Manitoba.

Whereas, the Department of Employment and Social Development Act (DESDA) authorizes the federal Minister to enter into agreements with the provinces and territories, for the purpose of facilitating the formulation, coordination and implementation of any program or policy within the mandate of DESDA.

Whereas, The Community Child Care Standards Act and The Executive Government Organization Act authorize the Manitoba Minister to enter into agreements with the Government of Canada under which Canada undertakes to provide funding toward costs incurred by the Government of Manitoba for the provision of early learning and child care programs and services.

Whereas, Canada has, pursuant to its Policy on Transfer Payments, established a transfer payment program to provide funds to the provincial and territorial governments for the development and delivery of regulated early learning and child care programs and services for children under 6 years of age, with consideration for families more in need.

Whereas, Canada and the Assembly of First Nations, Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami, the Métis National Council jointly released the co-developed Indigenous ELCC Framework in September 2018, which establishes overarching principles and sets a vision for happy and safe Indigenous children and families, strong cultural identity, and a comprehensive and coordinated system that is anchored in self-determination and centered on children and grounded in culture, and can be used as a guide for all actors involved in Indigenous ELCC.

Whereas, Manitoba invests in early learning and child care for Indigenous children.

Whereas , the Canada-Manitoba Early Learning and Child Care Agreement was signed on December 14, 2017 (2017 to 2020 Agreement) and extended by 1 year on August 24, 2020.

Whereas, in accordance with section 3.0 of the agreement signed in 2020, Canada and Manitoba wish to extend the agreement for a period of 4 years commencing April 1, 2021 and ending March 31, 2025, on the same terms and conditions as in the agreement, save and except for amendments as provided herein.

Whereas, intentions to extend the agreement were stated in writing and negotiations had commenced prior to the expiry of the 2020 to 2021 Agreement.

Whereas, Canada and Manitoba will continue to work together towards the mutual goal of establishing a Canada-wide child care system as recognized by the Canada-Manitoba Canada-Wide Early Learning and Child Care Agreement.

Now therefore, Canada and Manitoba agree as follows.

1.0 Vision for early learning and child care

1.1 Canada and Manitoba agree that the long term vision, principles and objectives for early learning and child care, which are set out in the Multilateral Early Learning and Child Care Framework that is attached as Annex 1, will guide the investment of funds provided under this Agreement.

2.0 Early learning and child care objectives and areas of investment

2.1 Objectives

2.1.1 Canada and Manitoba agree that over the period of this Agreement, with financial support from Canada, Manitoba will further build its early learning and child care system by addressing local, regional and system priorities that have an impact on families more in need, as described in the Multilateral Framework included in Annex 1, by increasing the quality, accessibility, affordability, flexibility and inclusivity in early learning and child care, towards achieving the objectives of:

Manitoba’s approach to achieving these objectives is set out in its action plan attached as Annex 2.

2.1.2 Canada and Manitoba agree that for fiscal year 2021 to 2022 only, Canada will provide a one-time contribution to Manitoba that will be used to support the recruitment and retention of the early childhood workforce, in accordance with Annex 3.

2.2 Eligible areas of investment

2.2.1 Manitoba agrees to prioritize funds provided by Canada under this Agreement in regulated early learning and child care programs and services for children under the age of 6 where:

2.2.2 Acceptable investments under this Agreement may include, but are not limited to: capital and operating funding for regulated early learning and child care, fee subsidies, training, professional development and support for the early childhood workforce, quality assurance, parents information and referral, and certain administration costs as described in section 4.5.1 incurred by Manitoba in implementing and administering this Agreement.

2.2.3 Canada and Manitoba also agree to promote, define, and deliver innovative approaches to enhance the quality, accessibility, affordability, flexibility, and inclusivity of early learning and child care systems, with consideration for those more in need.

2.2.4 Canada and Manitoba agree that funding will be targeted toward regulated programs and activities, as described above, that will have an impact on families more in need such as:

Needs also include having limited or no access to early learning and child care programs and services in the children’s official language.

2.2.5 In fiscal year 2021 to 2022, given the extraordinary circumstances of COVID-19, Manitoba may allocate funding under this Agreement to support short-term measures to minimize the impacts of COVID-19 on Manitoba’s ELCC system. These measures must be aligned with the principles of the Multilateral ELCC Framework (Annex 1) and be used to sustain ELCC programs and services.

2.3 Official language minority communities

2.3.1 In developing and administering its early learning and child care programs and services, Manitoba agrees to take into account the needs of official language minority communities in the Province of Manitoba.

3.0 Period of agreement

3.1 This Agreement shall come into effect upon the last signature being affixed and will remain in effect until March 31, 2025, unless terminated in writing by Canada or Manitoba, in accordance with the terms and conditions set out in section 11. Funding provided under this Agreement, in accordance with section 4, will cover the period from April 1, 2021 to March 31, 2025.

3.2 Extension of bilateral agreements

3.2.1 Subject to Parliamentary approval of appropriations, Canada commits that the total annual allocation for all provinces and territories for the period of fiscal year 2025 to 2026 to fiscal year 2027 to 2028 will be no less than the total annual allocation for all provinces and territories for the fiscal year covered under the 2020 to 2021 Agreement. Funding during the fiscal year 2025 to 2026 to fiscal year 2027 to 2028 period will be provided upon the execution of another extension of this bilateral Agreement and conditional on Canada’s acceptance of a new Manitoba action plan and informed by the results achieved under the action plan set out in Annex 2.

3.2.2 The extension process will provide Manitoba and Canada the opportunity to review and realign new priorities in response to emerging local and regional early learning and child care priorities and to course correct, if required, in future bilateral agreements based on progress made to date.

3.2.3 In the event this Agreement is extended in accordance with the terms of section 3.2.1, Manitoba may continue to use funding provided thereunder to cover the same eligible areas of investment as those covered through funding received for the periods 2017 to 2020, 2020 to 2021, and 2021 to 2025, subject to the terms and conditions of that extended agreement.

4.0 Financial provisions

4.1 The funding provided through this Agreement is in addition and not in lieu of those that Canada currently pays to Manitoba through the Canada Social Transfer in order to support early childhood development and early learning and child care within the Province of Manitoba.

4.2 Allocation to Manitoba

4.2.1 Canada has designated the following maximum amounts of funding to be transferred in total to all provinces and territories under this initiative with a fixed base rate of $2 million per year for each province and territory and the balance of the funding on a per capita basis for the period starting on April 1, 2021 and ending on March 31, 2025:

4.2.2 The final yearly amount to be paid to Manitoba will be calculated using the following formula F x K/L, where:

4.2.3 Subject to annual adjustment based on the formula described in section 4.2.2, and subject to any adjustments that may be required over the period of this Agreement, Manitoba’s estimated share of the amounts described in section 4.2.1 will be as follows.

Table 1: Estimated amount to be paid to Manitoba
Fiscal year Estimated amount to be paid to Manitoba* (subject to annual adjustment)
2021 to 2022 $15,549,308
2022 to 2023 $20,085,732
2023 to 2024 $21,591,824
2024 to 2025 $21,591,824

*Amount represents annual estimates based on Statistics Canada population estimates.

4.2.4 For the purposes of the formula in section 4.2.2, the population of Manitoba for each fiscal year and the total population of all provinces and territories for that fiscal year are the respective populations as determined on the basis of the quarterly preliminary estimates of the respective populations on July 1 of that fiscal year. These estimates are released by Statistics Canada in September of each fiscal year.

4.3 In this Agreement, “fiscal year” means the period commencing on April 1 of any calendar year and terminating on March 31 of the immediately following calendar year.

4.4 Payment

4.4.1 Subject to Parliamentary approval of appropriations, Canada’s contribution under this Agreement as set out in 4.2.3 will be paid in approximately equal semi-annual installments as follows.

4.4.2 In fiscal year 2021 to 2022, the first installment will be paid within 30 days after the signatures from both Parties are affixed to the agreement. The second installment will be paid within 30 days after the first installment has been paid.

4.4.3 Beginning in fiscal year 2022 to 2023, the first installment will be paid on or about June 15 of each fiscal year. The second installment will be paid on or about November 15 of each fiscal year.

4.4.4 The amount of the first semi-annual installment in any fiscal year included within the terms of this Agreement will be an amount equal to 50% of the notional amount of Canada’s maximum contribution to Manitoba for the fiscal year, which will be calculated in the manner described in sections 4.2.2 and 4.2.4.

4.4.5 The amount of the second installment will be an amount equal to the balance of Canada’s contribution to Manitoba for the fiscal year based on the actual amount of the contribution determined under sections 4.2.2 and 4.2.4 for the fiscal year.

4.4.6 Canada will notify Manitoba at the beginning of the fiscal year of their notional amount. The notional amount will be based on the Statistics Canada quarterly preliminary population estimates on July 1 of the preceding fiscal year. Canada will notify Manitoba of the actual amount of the second installment in each fiscal year as determined under the formula set out in section 4.2.2 as soon as possible following the release in September of each year of the Statistics Canada quarterly preliminary population estimates referred to in section 4.2.4.

4.4.7 Starting in fiscal year 2022 to 2023, Canada shall withhold payment of its first installment for each fiscal year if Manitoba has failed to provide its annual action plan in respect of that fiscal year in accordance with section 5.1.2 until such time as the annual action plan is provided.

4.4.8 In fiscal year 2021 to 2022, Canada shall withhold payment of its second installment for that fiscal year until Manitoba provides its annual audited financial statement of the last fiscal year covered by the agreement signed in 2020 in accordance with section 5.2.2 (d) of that agreement. Beginning in fiscal year 2022 to 2023, Canada shall withhold payment of its second installment for the fiscal year if Manitoba has failed to provide its annual audited financial statement for the previous fiscal year in accordance with section 5.2.1 (d) until such time as the annual audited statement is provided.

4.4.9 The sum of both semi-annual installments constitutes a final payment and, subject to sections 4.7.2 and 4.7.3, is not subject to any further adjustment once the second installment of that fiscal year has been paid.

4.4.10 Payment of Canada’s funding for each fiscal year of this Agreement is subject to an annual appropriation by the Parliament of Canada for this purpose. Likewise, use of Canada’s funding by Manitoba is subject to an annual appropriation by Manitoba’s Legislature.

4.5 Maximum annual contribution in respect of administration costs

4.5.1 Canada’s contribution in respect of Manitoba’s administration costs referred to in section 2.2.2 and section 2.3 of Annex 3 shall not exceed:

4.6 Carry forward

4.6.1 At the request of Manitoba and subject to the approval of Canada’s Treasury Board, Manitoba may retain and carry forward to fiscal year 2022 to 2023, an amount of up to 25% of the contribution paid to Manitoba for fiscal year 2021 to 2022 under section 4.2. Any unexpended funds in excess of 25% of the contribution paid represents an overpayment subject to section 4.7.

At the request of Manitoba and subject to the approval of Canada’s Treasury Board, Manitoba may retain and carry forward to the following fiscal year any unexpended funds remaining from Manitoba’s annual contribution paid under section 4.2., up to a maximum of 10% of the contribution paid in fiscal year 2022 to 2023 to fiscal year 2024 to 2025. Any unexpended funds in excess of 10% of the contribution paid represents an overpayment subject to section 4.7.

4.6.2 Manitoba may only use the amount carried forward to the following fiscal year for expenditures on eligible areas of investment under section 2.2 incurred in that fiscal year.

4.6.3 For greater certainty, any unexpended funds remaining from Manitoba’s annual contribution paid under section 4.2, up to a maximum of 10% of the contribution paid to Manitoba in the last year of the agreement signed in 2020 is eligible for carry forward to the first year of this Agreement.

4.6.4 For greater certainty, any amount carried forward under section 4.6.1 and 4.6.3 is supplementary to the maximum amount payable to Manitoba under section 4.2 of this Agreement during the fiscal year in which the funding is carried forward.

4.6.5 All amounts carried forward to the next fiscal year, pursuant to section 4.6.1 and 4.6.3 must be spent by the end of that fiscal year. Manitoba is not entitled to retain any such carried forward amounts that remain unexpended after the end of that fiscal year, nor is it entitled to retain any balance of Canada’s contribution paid pursuant to section 4.2 that remains unexpended at the end of that fiscal year and that is not carried forward in accordance with section 4.6.1. Such amounts are considered debts due to Canada and shall be repaid in accordance with section 4.7.

4.7 Repayment of overpayment

4.7.1 Canada and Manitoba agree that every effort will be made to ensure that the calculation of Canada’s contribution installments to Manitoba will be accurate.

4.7.2 In the event payments made to Manitoba exceed the amount to which Manitoba is entitled under the agreement, the amount of the excess is a debt due to Canada and shall be repaid to Canada upon receipt of notice in writing to do so within 90 days.

4.7.3 In the event that the second installment payment made to Manitoba is determined to be less than the amount to which Manitoba is owed under the terms of section 4, Canada agrees to pay Manitoba, within 90 days, the amount determined to be outstanding upon receipt of written notice to do so.

4.7.4 Canada shall, in addition to any other remedies available, have the right to recover the debt by deducting or setting-off the amount of debt from any future contribution payable to Manitoba under this Agreement.

4.8 Use of funds

4.8.1 Canada and Manitoba agree that funds provided under this Agreement will only be used by Manitoba in accordance with the areas for investment outlined in section 2.2 of this Agreement.

4.8.2 Canada and Manitoba agree that, within each fiscal year of the period of this Agreement, Manitoba may move funding between the individual programming categories outlined in its action plan in Annex 2 to ensure the maximum use of funding. Manitoba agrees to notify Canada in writing of any such change in funding allocation, including the rationale for the change.

5.0 Accountability and reporting

5.1 Action plan

5.1.1 Manitoba has completed and shared its action plan for fiscal year 2021 to 2022 of federal funding with Canada, as set out in Annex 2 of this Agreement. Upon signature of this Agreement by both Parties, Manitoba will publicly release its action plan which:

5.1.2 By May 1 of each fiscal year during the period of this Agreement, starting in fiscal year 2022 to 2023, Manitoba agrees to share with Canada an annual action plan. The annual action plan shall include the elements described in section 5.1.1 a) to g). An annual action plan may include multi-year initiatives, and the same annual action plan may be submitted over a multi-year period, on the agreement of both Parties. Once the Parties agree that the annual action plan is final, it may be published after May 1 of each fiscal year.

5.2 Reporting

5.2.1 By no later than October 1 of each fiscal year during the period of this Agreement, Manitoba agrees to:

5.2.2 Canada, with prior notice to Manitoba, may incorporate all or any part or parts of the said report into any public report that Canada may prepare for its own purposes, including any reports to the Parliament of Canada or reports that may be made public.

5.2.3 As part of Manitoba’s reporting requirements under this Agreement, Manitoba will not share with Canada any personal information.

5.3 Audit

5.3.1 Manitoba will ensure that expenditure information presented in the annual report is, in accordance with Manitoba’s standard accounting practices, complete and accurate.

5.4 Evaluation

5.4.1 As per established policies and processes with respect to program effectiveness, Manitoba will evaluate programs and services receiving funds provided under this Agreement and make public the results of any such evaluations.

6.0 Long-term collaboration

6.1 Canada and Manitoba agree to share and release data as available, and to share knowledge, research and information on effective and innovative practices in early learning and child care, to further support the development of and reporting on quality and outcomes. Canada and Manitoba agree to work together, and with stakeholders, towards the development of common quality and outcome measures that could be included in bilateral agreements in the future that could reinforce the Framework’s long-term vision.

6.2 Canada and Manitoba agree to work together to improve data collection and dissemination on key early learning and child care information for children under age 6.

6.3 While respecting the federal/Indigenous partnership in the Indigenous Early Learning and Child Care Framework, Canada and Manitoba agree to exchange information regarding both streams of investment into early learning and child care within Canada.

7.0 Communications

7.1 Canada and Manitoba agree on the importance of communicating with citizens about the objectives of this Agreement in an open, transparent, effective and proactive manner through appropriate public information activities.

7.2 Canada will make publicly available up-to-date early learning and child care agreements entered into with all provinces and territories, including any amendments by posting them on a Government of Canada website.

7.3 Each government will receive the appropriate credit and visibility when investments financed through funds granted under this Agreement are announced to the public.

7.4 Canada reserves the right to conduct public communications, announcements, events, outreach and promotional activities about the Framework and bilateral agreements. Canada agrees to give Manitoba 10 days advance notice and advance copies of public communications related to the Framework, bilateral agreements, and results of the investments of this Agreement.

7.5 Manitoba reserves the right to conduct public communications, announcements, events, outreach and promotional activities about the Framework and bilateral agreements. Manitoba agrees to give Canada 10 days advance notice and advance copies of public communications related to the Framework, bilateral agreements, and results of the investments of this Agreement.

8.0 Dispute resolution

8.1 Canada and Manitoba are committed to working together and avoiding disputes through government-to-government information exchange, advance notice, early consultation, and discussion, clarification, and resolution of issues, as they arise.

8.2 If at any time either Canada or Manitoba is of the opinion that the other party has failed to comply with any of its obligations or undertakings under this Agreement or is in breach of any term or condition of the agreement, Canada or Manitoba, as the case may be, may notify the other party in writing of the failure or breach. Upon such notice, Canada and Manitoba will endeavour to resolve the issue in dispute bilaterally through their designated officials, at the Assistant Deputy Minister level.

8.3 If a dispute cannot be resolved by designated officials, then the dispute will be referred to the Deputy Ministers of Canada and Manitoba most responsible for early learning and child care, and if it cannot be resolved by them, then the federal Minister and Manitoba Minister shall endeavour to resolve the dispute.

9.0 Amendments to the agreement

9.1 This Agreement, including all attached annexes, except Annex 1, may be amended at any time by mutual consent of the Parties. To be valid, any amendments shall be in writing and signed by the Parties.

9.2 Waiver

9.2.1 Failure by any party to exercise any of its rights, powers, or remedies under this Agreement or its delay to do so does not constitute a waiver of those rights, powers, or remedies. Any waiver by either party of any of its rights, powers, or remedies under this Agreement must be in writing; and, such a waiver does not constitute a continuing waiver unless it is so explicitly stated.

10. Equality of treatment

10.1 During the term of this Agreement, if another province or territory, except the province of Quebec, which is not part of the Multilateral Early Learning and Child Care Framework, negotiates and enters into an agreement with Canada to extend a 2020 to 2021 Early Learning and Child Care Agreement, or negotiates and enters into an amendment to such an agreement and if, in the reasonable opinion of Manitoba, any provision of that agreement or amended agreement is more favorable to that province or territory than the terms set forth in this Agreement, Canada agrees to amend this Agreement in order to afford similar treatment to Manitoba, if requested by Manitoba. This includes any provision of the agreement except for the financial provisions set out under section 4.0. This amendment shall be retroactive to the date on which the agreement or the amendment to such an agreement with the other province or territory, as the case may be, comes into force.

11.0 Termination

11.1 Canada may terminate this Agreement at any time if the terms of this Agreement are breached by Manitoba by giving at least 12 months written notice of its intention to terminate. Manitoba may terminate this Agreement at any time if the terms of this Agreement are breached by Canada by giving at least 12 months written notice of its intention to terminate.

11.2 As of the effective date of termination of this Agreement under section 11.1, Canada shall have no obligation to make any further payments to Manitoba after the date of effective termination.

12.0 Notice

12.1 Any notice, information or document provided for under this Agreement will be effectively given if delivered or sent by letter, postage or other charges prepaid. Any notice that is delivered will have been received in delivery; and, except in periods of postal disruption, any notice mailed will be deemed to have been received 8 calendar days after being mailed.

The address for notice or communication to Canada shall be:

Federal Secretariat on ELCC

140 Promenade du Portage

Gatineau QC  K1A 0J9

NC-SSP-ELCC-GD@hrsdc-rhdcc.gc.ca

The address for notice or communication to Manitoba shall be:

205 – 114 Garry Street

Winnipeg MB  R3C 4V4

melcc-ed@gov.mb.ca

13.0 General

13.1 This Agreement, including Annexes 1, 2, and 3, comprise the entire agreement entered into by the Parties.

13.2 This Agreement is based on the Multilateral Early Learning and Child Care Framework, Annex 1, concluded on June 12, 2017.

13.3 This Agreement shall be interpreted according to the laws of Canada and the Province of Manitoba.

13.4 No member of the House of Commons or of the Senate of Canada or of the Legislature of Manitoba shall be admitted to any share or part of this Agreement, or to any benefit arising therefrom.

13.5 If for any reason a provision of this Agreement that is not a fundamental term is found by a court of competent jurisdiction to be or to have become invalid or unenforceable, in whole or in part, it will be deemed to be severable and will be deleted from this Agreement, but all the other provisions of this Agreement will continue to be valid and enforceable.

13.6 This Agreement is drafted in English at the request of the Parties.

Signed on behalf of Canada by the Minister of Employment and Social Development (“Canada”) and as represented by the Minister of Families, Children and Social Development at Ottawa this 21st day of February, 2022.

[Signed by] The Honourable Karina Gould, Minister of Families, Children and Social Development.

Signed on behalf of Manitoba by the Minister of Education and Early Childhood Learning at Winnipeg this 16th day of February, 2022.

[Signed by] The Honourable Wayne Ewasko, Minister of Education and Early Childhood Learning.

Annex 1: Multilateral Early Learning and Child Care Framework

Federal, Provincial and Territorial Ministers most responsible for early learning and child care (ELCC) agree on the importance of supporting parents, families, and communities in their efforts to ensure the best possible future for their children. For more details, please consult the Multilateral Early Learning and Child Care Framework.

Annex 2: Manitoba action plan for fiscal year 2021 to 2022

In this section

Introduction

The agreements between Canada and Manitoba – the Canada-Manitoba ELCC Agreement (including a one-time Early Childhood Workforce Funding allocation), and the Canada-Manitoba Canada-Wide ELCC Agreement are based on a common set of principles established between Canada and the provinces and territories under the Multilateral Framework in 2017. These principles work towards investments that will increase quality, accessibility, affordability, flexibility, and inclusivity in early learning and child care, with consideration for those more in need.

Manitoba’s action plans under both agreements were developed to be interconnected, and will inform Manitoba’s roadmap for the modernization of its ELCC system. Modernization work is focused on strengthening and building on existing services to ensure children receive high quality early learning and child care. This will better support Manitoba parents to be employed, return to work or undertake training.

The modernization work is based on key principles that align the ELCC Multilateral Framework and will measure the strategic, targeted outcomes of this priority work.

Manitoba’s initiatives under the Canada-Manitoba ELCC Agreement experienced success under the original pillars of the fiscal year 2017 to 2018 to fiscal year 2019 to 2020 action plan, and the 2020 to 2021 Extension Agreement. Despite the challenges presented by the pandemic, Manitoba has met or exceeded several of its target outcomes. This includes 1,732 new and newly subsidized child care spaces; 10,304 unique users accessing the Manitoba Access portal for Science of Early Child Development (SECD) Living Textbook for current research and best practices on early child development; and training 1,409 board members across 211 child care facilities through the Basics of Effective Board Governance initiative. With the proposed allocation of $15,549,308 for Manitoba in fiscal year 2021 to 2022, and a carry-forward of 10% ($1.5 million) from fiscal year 2020 to 2021, Manitoba’s action plan for fiscal year 2021 to 2022 builds on many of the initiatives contained in the original agreement, with some changes to reflect current programming needs.

The impact of COVID-19

At the outset of the COVID-19 pandemic, Manitoba responded to the needs of the ELCC sector and families throughout the province with emergency measures to help flatten the curve of COVID-19, which included:

Manitoba’s ability to deliver on the initiatives outlined in its 2020 to 2021 action plan were compromised by COVID-19 public health measures, including provincial shutdowns resulting from stay-at-home orders. Initiatives that were impacted by the pandemic either experienced delays, or were placed on hold for the fiscal year 2020 to 2021, which includes:

The pandemic demonstrated the need for flexibility to re-allocate financial resources under the Canada-Manitoba ELCC Agreement essential to support and stabilize the ELCC sector under such exceptional circumstances. To reduce the financial impact of COVID-19 and maximize the use of federal funding, Manitoba provided financial support to the ELCC sector with 2 separate funding grants:

The financial impact of the events of fiscal year 2020 to 2021 are outlined in the table below.

Table 2: Manitoba’s delivery of 2020 to 2021 action plan*

Note: This table was modified for accessibility reasons.

Pillars Fiscal year 2020 to 2021 action plan initiatives Allocations Actuals Variance
Pillar 1: Supporting new and newly funded, affordable and accessible spaces New and newly subsidized spaces through pilot enhanced capital funding approach $6,358,440 $2,823,477 $3,534,963
Pillar 1: Supporting new and newly funded, affordable and accessible spaces Subsidies for new expansion spaces $2,833,445 $2,833,445 $0
Pillar 1: Supporting new and newly funded, affordable and accessible spaces COVID-19 response grants (includes additional carry-over of $580,584) $2,120,692 $6,870,525 -$4,749,833
Subtotal N/A $11,312,577 $12,527,447 -$1,214,870
Pillar 2: Building sector capacity and stability Science of Early Childhood Development, Manitoba Access online platform $270,000 $281,600 -$11,600
Pillar 2: Building sector capacity and stability Circle of Security, Core professional development training on inclusion $200,000 $57,511 $142,489
Pillar 2: Building sector capacity and stability MCCA online board governance $86,370 $72,850 $13,520
Pillar 2: Building sector capacity and stability Mentorship program for home-based providers $15,000 $5,700 $9,300
Subtotal N/A $571,370 $417,661 $153,709
Pillar 3: Rural and northern strategy Competency Based Assessment programs in rural/northern communities $50,000 $150 $49,850
Pillar 3: Rural and northern strategy Hybrid Group Home Child Care Pilot $200,000 $0 $200,000
Subtotal N/A $250,000 $150 $249,850
Pillar 4: Diversity and inclusions Dual Stream Service Model and ABA Training with St. Amant Centre $4,823,000 $2,864,469 $1,958,531
Pillar 4: Diversity and inclusions Indigenous Programming Grant $50,000 $50,000 $0
Subtotal N/A $4,873,000 $2,914,469 $1,958,531
Pillar 5: Administrative General administration $1,560,193 $1,560,193 $0
Grand total N/A $18,567,140 $17,419,920 $1,147,221

*Manitoba’s ability to deliver on its fiscal year 2020 to 2021 action plan were impacted by the pandemic.

Carry-forward

Manitoba may carry-forward up to 10% of its full allocation from fiscal year 2020 to 2021, 25% from fiscal year 2021 to 2022 into fiscal year 2022 to 2023, and 10% in the remaining years of the Canada-Manitoba ELCC Agreement, in order to maximize funding allocations and support Manitoba’s action plans. The projected carry-forward amounts are listed in the table below, subject to final adjustment through audited financial statements.

Table 3: Projected carry-forward amounts

Note: This table was modified for accessibility reasons

Fiscal year Annual allocation (subject to final adjustment) Max percentage Carry-forward (from previous fiscal year)
2020 to 2021 to 2021 to 2022 $15,549,308 10% $1,147,221*
2021 to 2022 to 2022 to 2023 $20,085,732 25% $3,887,327

*Amount shown is less than the maximum of 10% based on the allocation from fiscal year 2020 to 2021, confirmed in Manitoba’s Audited Financial Statement provided to Canada.

The modernization of ELCC in Manitoba

In June 2019, Manitoba engaged in a review of its current ELCC provincial funding model aimed at modernizing the ELCC system and funding approach. The review focused on strategically assessing the effectiveness and sustainability of the current ELCC funding model and the development of an outcomes-based approach that ensures improved accessibility and affordability for low- and middle- income families.

On March 11, 2021, Manitoba introduced Bill 47 (The Early Learning and Child Care Act). The act provides the legislative framework to support the modernization of Manitoba’s ELCC system, and formally introduces the concept of early learning into legislation. Changes enabled through the act will strengthen and improve ELCC services across the province by prioritizing health, safety and well-being of children, provide diverse, inclusive and responsive child care options for families and ensure sector sustainability through responsible use of public funds. The new act builds on progress made through recent amendments to the Child Care Regulations and lays the foundation for greater equity through a modernized funding approach and, increased flexibility through regulations that support extended-hour child care options and part-time spaces. Until official proclamation of Bill 47 and the coming into force of new ELCC regulations, Manitoba will be undergoing a transitional period, and is committed to providing targeted operating grants to maintain current licensed programs and child care centers.

Fiscal year 2021 to 2022 bilateral agreement initiatives

Manitoba’s action plan for fiscal year 2021 to 2022 builds on the success of the previous fiscal year 2020 to 2021 action plan, including the continuation of initiatives previously delayed or placed on hold during the pandemic, strengthening ELCC services in Manitoba by emphasizing the vision of the original pillars. Changes to Manitoba’s action plan for fiscal year 2021 to 2022 include new initiatives such as the Renovation Expansion Grant, and funding for the Child Care Assistant 40-hour course. The Circle of Security (COS) training is re-aligned under the Dual-Stream Service Model in Pillar 4 and funding was increased to support Indigenous and Francophone programming.

Manitoba’s action plan for fiscal year 2021 to 2022 focuses its investments on:

Pillar 1: Supporting new and newly funded, affordable and accessible spaces

Manitoba will continue investments to meet target outcomes for increasing accessibility and affordability under Pillar 1 of the Canada-Manitoba ELCC Agreement: Supporting new and newly funded, affordable, and accessible spaces. Under the previous agreement, Manitoba exceeded its initial target outcomes of providing operating subsidies to unfunded spaces, and the creation of new spaces. For its fiscal year 2021 to 2022 action plan, Manitoba will allocate up to $8.8 million in federal funding in order to maintain operational costs associated with these spaces, aligning with the objectives for increasing accessibility and affordability.

Under The Community Child Care Standards Act, Manitoba provides capital grant funding to develop non-profit child care spaces through the ELCC Building Fund. Other recent provincial initiatives to increase space capacity include the Child Care Centre Development Tax Credit, and the Child Care Expansion Fund Start-Up grants, developed to assist operators in opening more spaces as part of Manitoba’s COVID-19 response. Manitoba’s fiscal year 2017 to 2018 bilateral action plan delivered an enhanced capital approach that leveraged existing project management resources within the Department of Families to support non-profit organizations in the construction and development of new child care spaces.

Under its fiscal year 2021 to 2022 action plan, Manitoba will provide a Renovation Expansion Grant to existing non-profit child care facilities to expand space capacity to meet community need. The grant will provide one-time funding for a facility to open a full group of infant or preschool spaces. Under Manitoba’s Child Care Regulations, a group of infant spaces is 4, and a group of preschool spaces is 8; group sizes align with the regulated staff-to-child ratio.

The Renovation Expansion Grant will provide funding to existing facilities to make incremental increases to their space capacity in response to community need. Funding will be based on the development of a full group for a type of space, as determined by the current child care regulations. Eligibility will be based on developing a full “new group” or increasing spaces within a potential group that currently is less than 50% of the group size, by providing up to $88,000 for a group of infant spaces and up to $140,000 for a group of preschool spaces for a total investment of $735,000. Funding will support the development of spaces and the administrative and overhead costs associated with opening new spaces to expedite development. The program will target the development of up to 42 new preschool or 32 new infant spaces, or a combination of both.

Pillar 2: Building sector capacity and stability

Successful initiatives implemented under Pillar 2 of the fiscal year 2017 to 2018 action plan include the web-based Science of Early Child Development (SECD), and the Basics of Effective Board Governance. In previous years, the SECD Access Portal has provided free access for all Manitobans to the most current research, education, and training information on early child development, with over 10,000 unique users that accessed the portal between fiscal year 2017 to 2018 and fiscal year 2019 to 2020. Noting the success of SECD, ELCC Branch will continue its partnership with Red River College (RRC), allocating up to $92,000 for SECD to maintain the access portal.

As per the Child Care Regulation, Child Care Assistants (CCAs) are required to complete 40-hours of course work that meets the criteria for certification, which must be completed within the first year of employment; the 40-hour Introduction to SECD course offered by RRC meets the criteria. Complementing recruitment and retention strategies outlined in the accompanying Early Childhood Workforce Agreement, Manitoba will allocate $130,000 to increase the number and size of cohorts offered by RRC, and decrease the barrier of entry. This will include expanding the number of cohorts from 3 to 4 in the spring and fall semesters of 2022, and from 6 to 8 in the winter semester of 2023; increasing the number of participants per cohort from 20 to 30; and providing tuition subsidies of $179 per CCA, and decreasing the costs of tuition for students from $429 to $250.

In the regulated non-profit sector, participation on a board of directors is voluntary, with high turnover rates as children change centres or age out of child care. The Basics of Effective Board Governance assists by mitigating the effects of high turnover, and supporting new members that require training on roles and responsibilities of board members. Manitoba will allocate an additional $50,000 to the development of new training modules in partnership with the Manitoba Child Care Association (MCCA) to continue providing supports and build on the foundation of the Basics of Effective Board Governance.

Manitoba’s fiscal year 2017 to 2018 action plan included the implementation of a pilot mentorship project for home-based child care providers, in which experienced home-based providers (mentors) were paired with newly-established providers or those who need support (mentees) to strengthen the delivery of quality child care services. Under the Canada-Manitoba Canada-Wide ELCC Agreement, Manitoba will work with community organizations through requests for proposals to establish a local agency-based model for recruiting, licensing assistance, monitoring and supporting home-based providers. This focused support through an agency-based model is anticipated to result in greater retention and quality programming that is responsive to higher need communities. The new model will be implemented in fiscal year 2022 to 2023.

To ensure home-based providers are supported during the transition to the agency-based model, Manitoba’s fiscal year 2021 to 2022 action plan will allocate $50,000 toward continued professional development for home-based providers that will support outcomes increasing quality in the regulated sector.

Pillar 3: Rural and northern strategy

Manitoba’s fiscal year 2021 to 2022 action plan will provide funding to continue offering the CBA Program for rural and northern participants. The Program continues to be an effective method for participants to obtain an early childhood education 2 certification, by recognizing the value of previous and related education and hands-on experience. Manitoba will allocate $50,000 in federal funding to the CBA Program to build sector capacity in rural and Northern communities; and it is anticipated that the number of interested participants will be greater than previous years, due to the program-pause during the pandemic. This will require Manitoba to contract with additional advisors to the CBA specifically to support Northern participants.

Pillar 4: Diversity and inclusion

Manitoba’s fiscal year 2021 to 2022 action plan, will expand supports for children with additional support needs, through ABA training and the addition of COS training (previously a Pillar 2 initiative), and increased funding for grants that enhance Francophone and Indigenous programming.

Manitoba will allocate $4.8 million in federal funding to continue supporting the Dual Stream Service Model to provide funding to effectively address the distinct needs of the children with life-long disabilities and those with emotional and behavioural needs. Funding will also be directed at ABA training for sector staff to support and meet the needs of the children for whom this approach is a best-fit. Manitoba’s 2017 action plan outlined COS training under Pillar 2; however, its focus is on inclusion by supporting the diverse needs of all children in a secure environment, and therefore supports re-alignment under Pillar 4.

The fiscal year 2021 to 2022 action plan funding will provide increased funding of $100,000 to support training for the Francophone ELCC sector. In previous years prior to fiscal year 2020 to 2021, the ELCC Branch provided block funding to Indigenous ELCC facilities based on the number of spaces, ranging from $2,240 for home-based providers, and up to $19,200 for larger child care centres. With significant demand for the Indigenous Programming Grant in fiscal year 2020 to 2021, the allocation for the initiative will be increased by 600% in Manitoba’s action plan, raising the total allocation from $50,000 in fiscal year 2020 to 2021 to $300,000 in fiscal year 2021 to 2022. Increasing the allocation of the Indigenous Programming Grant demonstrates Manitoba’s commitment to advancing reconciliation within the ELCC sector, supporting the expansion of culturally appropriate ELCC programming throughout the province, and the children and families accessing those spaces.

Pillar 5: Public reporting and community engagement

The Minister’s Consultation Table was initiated under the fiscal year 2017 to 2018 to fiscal year 2019 to 2020 bilateral agreement with the intent of being the primary mechanism to regularly consult on the bilateral agreement action plan with a membership that represents a wide range of provincial stakeholders including advocates, educators, facility directors and operators, parents and early childhood educators, from a cross section of cultural backgrounds including Francophone and Indigenous communities. In fiscal year 2021 to 2022, the Table was expanded with a focus on Manitoba’s modernization of the full provincial child care system. A bilateral subcommittee of the table is tasked with providing feedback and informing the Minister about matters related to the regulated sector and the federal ELCC agreements action plans.

Federal investments will also be made to enhance Manitoba’s information technology systems and staffing to help meet the progress tracking and public reporting commitments of the bilateral action plan.

The table below demonstrates Manitoba’s proposed allocations to maintain ongoing initiatives for its fiscal year 2021 to 2022 action plan.

Table 4: Proposed allocations to ongoing initiatives for fiscal year 2021 to 2022 Manitoba action plan

Note: this table was modified for accessibility reasons.

Pillars Fiscal year 2021 to 2022 Manitoba action plan initiatives Ongoing Costs
Pillar 1: Supporting new and newly funded, affordable and accessible spaces Operating costs for new and newly subsidized spaces $8,812,000
Pillar 1: Supporting new and newly funded, affordable and accessible spaces Renovation expansion grant $734,599
Pillar 1 subtotal N/A $9,546,598
Pillar 2: Building sector capacity and stability Science of early childhood development (SECD), access portal:
  • maintenance of the Manitoba access portal through RRC
$92,000
Pillar 2: Building sector capacity and stability 40-hour child care assistant course:
  • increasing the number of cohorts offered by RRC for the 40-Hour Introduction to SECD course
  • subsidizing tuition by $179 per CCA
$130,000
Pillar 2: Building sector capacity and stability Home-based mentorship:
  • professional development
$50,000
Pillar 2: Building sector capacity and stability Basics of effective board governance training:
  • new and expanded training modules
$50,000
Pillar 2 subtotal N/A $322,000
Pillar 3: Rural and northern strategy Rural and northern competency based assessment program:
  • advisor to the CBA program specific to rural and northern participants
$50,000
Pillar 3 subtotal N/A $50,000
Pillar 4: Diversity and inclusion Dual stream service model, children with additional needs:
  • supports for children with additional support needs
  • applied behavioral analysis (ABA) training with St. Amant Centre
  • circle of security (COS), facilitator training
  • child development supports
$4,823,000
Pillar 4: Diversity and inclusion Indigenous programming grant $300,000
Pillar 4: Diversity and inclusion Francophone training enhancement grant $100,000
Pillar 4 subtotal N/A $5,223,000
Pillar 5: Administrative
  • general administration
  • IT Platform
  • Minister’s consultation table
$1,554,930
Pillar 5 subtotal N/A $1,554,930
Pillar grand total N/A $16,696,529
Canada full allocation for fiscal year 2021 to 2022 N/A $15,549,308
Fiscal year 2020 to 2021 carry forward N/A $1,147,221
Full allocation and carry-forward N/A $16,696,529

A summary of Manitoba’s fiscal year 2021 to 2022 action plan is provided below, including financial allocations, previously achieved targets up to fiscal year 2019 to 2020, indicators, and initiative descriptions. Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, Manitoba’s ability to deliver on the initiatives outlined in the fiscal year 2021 to 2022 action plan may be affected, and as such, the target outcomes may require adjustment and expenditures may differ. All changes are subject to the approval of the Government of Canada, as outlined in sections 2.2.5 and 4.8.2 of the Canada-Manitoba ELCC Agreement.

Table 5: Pillar 1: Supporting new and newly funded accessible spaces

Note: The tables below were modified for accessibility reasons.

Note: Financial allocations in the following tables use an abbreviated notation.

Table 5a: Pillar 1: Operating costs for new and newly subsidized spaces
Initiative Principles supported Fiscal year 2021 to 2022 funding Indicators Fiscal year 2017 to 2018 to fiscal year 2019 to 2020 cumulative Fiscal year 2021 to 2022 targets Fiscal year 2021 to 2022 actuals
Operating costs for new and newly subsidized spaces Accessible, affordable, flexible, high quality $8.8 million Number and percentage of children who have access to regulated ELCC spaces and/or programs

Number and proportion of children from diverse populations served by the capital projects (that is, French language, low-income, low coverage, rural or northern)
1,732 new and newly subsidized expansion child care spaces were created:
  • a total of 316 new spaces were created from fiscal year 2017 to 2018 through fiscal year 2019 to 2020
  • a total of 390 spaces were created in fiscal year 2020 to 2021
  • a total of 282 were created in fiscal year 2021 to 2022
  • a total of 744 spaces received funding from fiscal year 2017 to 2018 through fiscal year 2019 to 2020
92 new spaces created and funded
Funding for 1,732 spaces to support financial stability of newly funded spaces
from fiscal year 2017 to 2018 to fiscal year 2021 to 2022
N/A

Description: Operating costs for new and newly subsidized spaces

Table 5b: Pillar 1: Renovation expansion grant initiative
Initiative Principles supported Fiscal year 2021 to 2022 funding Indicators Fiscal year 2017 to 2018 to fiscal year 2019 to 2020 cumulative Fiscal year 2021 to 2022 targets Fiscal year 2021 to 2022 actuals
Renovation Expansion Grant Accessible, affordable, flexible, high quality $735,000 Number of new spaces created N/A Up to 42 new preschool or 32 new infant spaces or; a combination of both created for children ages 0 to 6 N/A

Description: Renovation expansion grant initiative

Table 6: Pillar 2: Building sector capacity and stability

Note: The tables below were modified for accessibility reasons.

Table 6a: Pillar 2: The science of early childhood development (SECD) initiative
Initiative Principles supported Fiscal year 2021 to 2022 funding Indicators Fiscal year 2017 to 2018 to fiscal year 2019 to 2020 cumulative Fiscal year 2021 to 2022 targets Fiscal year 2021 to 2022 actuals
The science of early child development (SECD), living textbook High quality, inclusive $92,000 Maintenance of the online platform with RRC

Number of ELCC sector stakeholders accessing the portal for information and professional development
10,304 unique users accessed the portal 1,000 new users access the portal N/A

Description: The science of early childhood development (SECD) initiative

Table 6b: Pillar 2: Child care assistant 40-hour course initiative
Initiative Principles Supported Fiscal year 2021 to 2022 funding Indicators Fiscal year 2017 to 2018 to fiscal year 2019 to 2020 cumulative Fiscal year 2021 to 2022 targets Fiscal year 2021 to 2022 actuals
Child care assistant 40-hour course High quality, inclusive $130,000 Increasing the number of available cohorts through Red River College for the 40-Hour Introduction to SECD course N/A Up to 16 cohorts funded from spring 2022 through winter 2023 semesters

Up to 30 students per cohort
N/A

Description: Child care assistant 40-hour course initiative

Table 6b(i): Overview of cohorts and costs by semester
Semester Number of cohorts Students per cohort Cost per semester
Spring 2022 4 30 $31,170.00
Fall 2022 4 30 $31,170.00
Winter 2023 8 30 $66,540.00
Total 16 480 $128,880.00
Table 6c: Pillar 2: Home-based mentorship initiative
Initiative Principles supported Fiscal year 2021 to 2022 funding Indicators Fiscal year 2017 to 2018 to fiscal year 2019 to 2020 cumulative Fiscal year 2021 to 2022 targets 2021 to 2022 actuals
Home-based mentorship High quality, inclusive $50,000 Number of home-based ELCC providers participating in professional development N/A 65 home-based providers receive professional development training to enhance quality N/A

Description: Home-based mentorship initiative

Table 6d: Pillar 2: Basics of effective board governance training initiative
Initiative Principles supported Fiscal year 2021 to 2022 funding Indicators Fiscal year 2017 to 2018 to fiscal year 2019 to 2020 cumulative Fiscal year 2021 to 2022 targets Fiscal year 2021 to 2022 actuals
Basics of effective board governance training High quality $50,000 Number of licensed non-profit facilities trained

Number of francophone licensed non-profit facilities trained

Improved or additional modules
1,409 board members of 211 unique ELCC facilities have been trained

Created 2 new training modules related to running effective meetings
Up to 450 Board members and directors from up to 70 facilities access training
Development of 2 new training modules
N/A

Description: Basics of effective board governance training initiative

Table 7: Pillar 3: Rural and northern strategy

Note: The tables below were modified for accessibility reasons.

Table 7a: Pillar 3: Competency based assessment in programs in rural and northern communities
Initiative Principles supported Fiscal year 2021 to 2022 funding Indicators Fiscal year 2017 to 2018 to fiscal year 2019 to 2020 cumulative Fiscal year 2021 to 2022 targets Fiscal year 2021 to 2022 actuals
Competency Based Assessment programs in rural and northern communities High quality $50,000 Number and proportion of providers with early childhood education certification residing in rural and northern communities 6 participants and 1 rurally based contracted advisor 6 participants and 1 northern advisor N/A

Description: Competency based assessment in programs in rural and northern communities

Table 8: Pillar 4: Diversity and inclusion

Note: The tables below were modified for accessibility reasons.

Table 8a: Pillar 4: Dual stream service model initiative
Initiative Principles supported Fiscal year 2021 to 2022 funding Indicators Fiscal year 2017 to 2018 to fiscal year 2019 to 2020 cumulative Fiscal year 2021 to 2022 targets Fiscal year 2021 to 2022 actuals
Dual stream service model, children with additional needs Inclusive, flexible, high quality, accessible $4.8 million Number of children with additional support needs enrolled in ELCC programs

Number of facilities receiving ABA training

Number of facilities receiving COS training
846 children with additional support needs

Supported 265 staff from 28 facilities trained in ABA

150 facilitators trained from fiscal year 2017 to 2018 through to fiscal year 2019 to 2020
400 children with additional support needs

Support 200 staff from a further 25 facilities

10 facilitators trained in COS; 10 ELCC facilities receive COS training
N/A

Description: Dual stream service model initiative

1. Dual stream service model, service and funding approach for children with additional support needs
2. Applied behavioural analysis training for ELCC facilities
3. Circle of security (COS), facilitator training
Table 8b: Pillar 4: Indigenous programming grant initiative
Initiative Principles supported Fiscal year 2021 to 2022 funding Indicators Fiscal year 2017 to 2018 to fiscal year 2019 to 2020 cumulative Fiscal year 2021 to 2022 targets Fiscal year 2021 to 2022 actuals
Indigenous Programming Grant Diversity and inclusion, accessible, affordable, and flexible $300,000 Number of grants issued 14 self-identified Indigenous ELCC facilities received grant (1 facility closed) 28 facilities to implement culturally appropriate Indigenous programming N/A

Description: Indigenous programming grant initiative

Table 8c: Francophone training enhancement grant initiative
Initiative Principles supported Fiscal year 2021 to 2022 funding Indicators Fiscal year 2017 to 2018 to fiscal year 2019 to 2020 cumulative Fiscal year 2021 to 2022 targets Fiscal year 2021 to 2022 actuals
Francophone Training Enhancement Grant Diversity and inclusion, high quality, accessible $100,000 Number of Francophone ELCC facilities receiving resources and training supports $50,000 in grant funding provided to Fédération des Parents du Manitoba (FPM) to support training and professional development in fiscal year 2019 to 2020 25 facilities access resources to support French language programming N/A

Description: Francophone training enhancement grant initiative

Table 9: Pillar 5: General administration

Note: this table was modified for accessibility reasons.

Initiative Principles supported Fiscal year 2021 to 2022 funding Indicators Fiscal year 2017 to 2018 to fiscal year 2019 to 2020 cumulative Fiscal year 2021 to 2022 targets Fiscal year 2021 to 2022 actuals
General administration N/A Up to 10% of agreement, approximately $1.5 million N/A N/A N/A N/A

Description: General administration

Annex 3: Early childhood workforce funding

In this section

Introduction

Manitoba’s child care regulations recognize 3 different classifications of child care workers:

As per section 7(4) of the Child Care Regulation of The Community Child Care Standards Act, two-thirds of all staff working in licensed early learning and child care (ELCC) centers in Manitoba must be classified as an ECE 2 or ECE 3. As of March 2020, 76.5% of licensed ELCC centres meet the regulated requirements for trained staff; however, a number of higher-need areas of the province are below this provincial average including remote rural regions and Northern communities.

The Department of Families provided $9.4 million to child care providers in fiscal year 2019 to 2020 for supportive workforce initiatives including a wage adjustment grant, tuition support, pension reimbursements, staffing replacements grants, and college expansion funding and scholarships for ECE education and training.

The workforce challenges identified by the regulated care sector, including centres and home-based providers focus on recruitment and retention of qualified staff at all 3 certification levels. Barriers most consistently noted are:

The ability to recruit and retain staff has been further compounded by the COVID-19 pandemic, with health orders and meeting new fundamentals of practice resulting in temporary closures, reductions in enrollment capacity, adjusted hours of operation, and new position responsibilities to ensure safe and healthy learning and care environments.

In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, families struggled to find suitable child care to support parents who continued to work, and those that needed to seek new employment. The pandemic emphasized the invaluable service that the ELCC sector provides for families, and the critical need for more flexible and responsive child care programs. The need for greater professional recognition of the workforce was further amplified as essential in order to engage with the sector in expanding child care options for families and to continue providing high quality ELCC services.

With the single-year workforce allocation of $19,166,459 provided by Canada for fiscal year 2021 to 2022, Manitoba is focusing on recruitment and retention strategies to provide immediate measures aimed at increasing the number of new ECEs in the regulated sector. It will also provide recognition for existing CCAs and ECEs through enhanced wages and benefits in order to set the stage for transitioning to longer-term initiatives set out in the new Canada-Manitoba Canada-Wide ELCC Agreement.

Recruitment strategies

Manitoba’s recruitment strategies are focused on:

To receive certification as an ECE 2 in Manitoba, an individual must complete a 2-year diploma program, offered by one of 8 post-secondary institutions (PSI), with an average tuition cost of $4,000 per year. To increase accessibility, Manitoba will fund additional cohorts through a Request for Proposal process, including eligibility for cohorts in private vocational institutions not eligible for ongoing public funding. Approved proposals will need to demonstrate an ability to implement innovative measures (such as remote learning) to train ECEs for higher need communities including Indigenous, newcomer, racialized, Francophone and rural and Northern individuals. To maximize the Workforce funding, Manitoba will provide 2 years of funding upfront to support an additional 6 early childhood education training cohorts, with a size requirement of 15 to 20 students per cohort and targeting a 70% graduation rate. This is expected to result in the addition of approximately 74 additional ECEs who can be added to the workforce by September 2024. Manitoba’s allocation for this initiative is $2.4 million to cover a period of 2 years.

Additionally, Manitoba will allocate up to $2.0 million in tuition reimbursements for students either current enrolled in an early childhood education training program in the province for the 2021 to 2022 academic year, or the upcoming 2022 to 2023 academic year. Students will need to apply for tuition reimbursement by providing proof of enrollment, and tuition paid for each year. Tuition reimbursement will be for a maximum of $4,000 per year, which is targeted to support up to 250 early childhood education students.

As outlined above in Manitoba’s action plan under the Canada-Manitoba ELCC Agreement, the CBA program is a cost-effective program for CCAs with prior or related education (including international education) working toward an early childhood education 2 certification. While there are no direct costs associated with enrollment in the CBA program, there are personal costs incurred for materials including the purchase of materials for the development of portfolios, supplies to support assignments and journals for placement experiences. Participants in the CBA program will be able to apply for a benefit of up to $200 to reimburse for those costs, with Manitoba allocating a total of $6,000 for fiscal year 2021 to 2022.

The Child Care Qualifications and Training Committee (CCQTC) is established under The Community Child Care Standards Act to research, review and make recommendations for matters pertaining to training of all staff working in the early learning and child care sector. Along with reviewing and making recommendations to the Minister for approval of early childhood education programs offered by PSIs, the CCQTC is responsible for establishing the full continuum of workforce competencies. In 2019, the CCQTC re-developed competencies to inform ECE 2 training but has not been able to develop a broad continuum to encompass the full workforce landscape from entry level positions at the CCA level through to ECE 3s that hold managerial and leadership positions. Under the Early Childhood Workforce Agreement, Manitoba will allocate $400,000 to secure a consultant to work with the CCQTC to develop the continuum of competencies that support the full range of workforce training and inform potential new classifications to improve career laddering and bolster long-term recruitment and retention of the workforce landscape.

Under the Canada-Manitoba Canada-Wide ELCC Agreement, Manitoba is allocating a further $200,000 toward the procurement of a consultant to assist with the development of staff re-certification requirements, and the re-development of Manitoba’s ELCC curriculum framework, increasing quality and expanding inclusivity of child care services. Currently, once a child care worker receives their certification in Manitoba, they remain certified indefinitely. The re-certification process will require CCAs and ECEs to participate in professional development to remain certified supporting increased quality throughout the sector. Modernizing the workforce certification requirements and process to endorse continued professional development and career laddering in the early learning field will set the stage to ensure the workforce is delivering services based on current early learning information and approaches.

Retention strategies

Manitoba’s retention strategies are focused on:

In Manitoba, the regulations for public sector employee pension plans falls under the Child Care Worker Retirement Benefits Regulation of The Community Child Care Standards Act. The employee’s contribution to the pension fund of the license holder is equal to 4% of the employee’s wages, with the employer matching employee contributions of 4%. Section 3.1(2) of the Child Care Worker Retirement Benefits Regulation, authorizes disbursements of grants to reimburse an employee’s contributions to an employer’s pension plan equal to 2% of the employee’s regular wages. Manitoba will allocate up to $2.9 million in federal funding to enhance pension plans by providing an additional 2% to the employee pension plan contributions, based on employee wages, and targeting up to 6,261 eligible staff working in regulated non-profit child care centres that have been active over the past 20 months during the COVID-19 pandemic.

In Manitoba, home-based providers are not eligible for enrollment into a pension fund for reimbursement; however, they are eligible for reimbursement for Registered Retirement Savings Plan (RRSP) contributions under section 4(1) of the Child Care Worker Retirement Benefits Regulation of The Community Child Care Standards Act.  This reimbursement grant is up to 50% of the license holder’s contribution, or up to a maximum dollar amount, depending on the type of home-based provider they are, and if they have an early childhood education certification. As per section 4(2) of the regulations a license holder is eligible of up to 50% of the total amounts contributed by the license holder for that year, with a range depending upon their classification and type of child care operation (family home or group family home). To enhance the retention of home-based providers in the province, Manitoba will allocate a total of $117,500 to support up to 235 home-based providers with RRSP contribution benefits in the amount of $500 per license holder.

In addition to the enhanced pension contributions, Manitoba will also allocate up to $3.0 million in funding for a one-time Tax-Free Savings Account (TFSA) deposit, eligible for the regulated non-profit child care sector, including child care centres and home-based providers. To ensure equitable distribution of funds, the TFSA deposit will be based on a years-of-service model, providing a range of deposits from a minimum of $450 for ECEs with 2 to 5 years of service, up to a maximum of $1,400 for ECEs with 15 years or more of service, with an average of $1,083 per TFSA deposit. Manitoba will provide this benefit for up to 2,761 ECEs providing immediate economic benefits to eligible applicants. CCAs are ineligible for this benefit, as Manitoba has allocated significant investments supporting their career growth through workforce recruitment initiatives by providing tuition reimbursements. This one-time deposit will provide recognition to trained ECEs who have been long-time sector employees and demonstrate to new hires Manitoba’s commitment to supporting and growing a qualified trained workforce.

In Manitoba, child care facilities operate as private businesses, and board directors are responsible for establishing wages at non-profit centres, and owner/operators at for-profit facilities. This has resulted in a wide range of wages across the sector.  Under the Canada-Manitoba Canada-Wide ELCC Agreement, a minimum wage grid will be implemented in Manitoba to provide guidance to non-profit boards in developing equitable wage scales by establishing a minimum wage based on the position and classification of the employee, which will establish higher wages for entry-level ECEs and CCAs at the outset. Implementation of the minimum wage grid in Manitoba will require amendments to the regulations under The Community Child Care Standards Act in the form of a schedule or development of a robust policy with related reporting requirements.

In order to maximize funding and support the ELCC sector workforce until the minimum wage grid can be fully implemented, Manitoba will allocate up to $6.6 million from the Early Childhood Workforce Agreement to support Wage-Bridge initiatives, with $5.5 million allocated for ECEs, and $1.1 million allocated for CCAs. Manitoba has identified up to 48 ECEs that earn less than $16.58 per hour, which is the average hourly wage of an ECE with 2 years of experience or less; 960 ECEs earning less than the average starting wage of $20.90 per hour, and 115 ECE 2 supervisors who work on the floor that make less than $23.32. Manitoba’s current minimum wage is $11.95 per hour; there are approximately 815 CCAs, earning less than $13.11 per hour, as proposed in the Minimum Wage Grid. The Wage-Bridge initiative will strengthen the economic stability of sector staff earning below the entry-level wages of the proposed Minimum Wage Grid by immediately raising the wages of the identified sector personnel to the meet the average minimum wages noted above.

Through these initiatives, Manitoba will work to retain the ELCC workforce as Manitoba and Canada work together toward supporting a new Canada-Wide Child Care system, by providing appropriate remuneration to new and experienced employees, and benefits that provide economic stability for sector employees.

Carry-forward

To fully implement the initiatives Manitoba will carry-forward 25% of the fiscal year 2021 to 2022 allocation into the fiscal year 2022 to 2023. This is necessary to maximize allocated funds particularly for any initiatives requiring application for funds including:

The table below summarizes Manitoba’s allocation for its recruitment and retention strategies supported by the Early Childhood Workforce Agreement.

Table 10: Early childhood workforce agreement initiatives and allocations

Note: the table below was modified for accessibility reasons.

Strategies Initiatives Allocation
Recruitment strategy Early childhood education training programs, additional cohorts $2,400,000
Recruitment strategy Early childhood education tuition reimbursement $2,040,000
Recruitment strategy CBA program benefits $6,000
Recruitment strategy Competency continuum development, consultant $200,000
Retention strategy Retirement enhancement benefits $2,900,000
Retention strategy Tax-free savings account deposit $2,990,150
Retention strategy Wage bridge benefit, ECE $5,536,450
Retention strategy Wage bridge benefit, CCA $1,177,776
Retention strategy Administration costs $1,916,083
Allocation total N/A $19,166,459

A full summary of Manitoba’s recruitment and retention strategies, including detailed descriptions, financial allocations (abbreviated), and indicators and target outcomes, is provided in the tables below.

Table 11: Recruitment strategies

Note: The tables below were modified for accessibility reasons.

Note: Financial allocations in the following tables use an abbreviated notation.

Table 11a: ECE training programs
Initiative Funding Indicators Targets Outcomes
Early childhood education training programs, additional cohorts $2.4 million
  • number of early childhood education cohorts funded for 2 years
  • number of early childhood education students per cohort
  • total number of early childhood education students funded
  • number of new early childhood education graduates
  • number of post-secondary, vocational, and technical schools funded
  • up to 6 new ECE cohorts funded for 2 years, including public and private vocational institutions
  • 15 to 20 students per cohort
  • up to 74 potential new ECE graduates based on a 70% graduation rate
N/A

Description: ECE training programs

Table 11b: Early childhood education tuition reimbursement initiative
Initiative Funding Indicators Targets Outcomes
Early childhood education tuition reimbursement $2.04 million
  • number of students and new graduates applying for tuition reimbursements, and number of reimbursements provided
  • average tuition reimbursement ($) per ECE
  • up to 250 students and recent graduates receiving tuition reimbursements
  • maximum $4,000 tuition reimbursement per year, per student
N/A

Description: Early childhood education tuition reimbursement initiative

Table 11c: Competency based assessment (CBA) program benefit initiative
Initiative Funding Indicators Targets Outcomes
Competency based assessment (CBA) program benefit $6,000
  • number of CBA program participants applying for benefit
  • maximum benefit of $200 per CBA participant
  • up to 30 CBA program participants awarded the benefit in fiscal year 2021 to 2022 and fiscal year 2022 to 2023
  • total federal funding provided
N/A

Description: Competency based assessment (CBA) program benefit initiative

Table 11d: Competency continuum development project consultant initiative
Initiative Funding Indicators Targets Outcomes
Competency continuum development project, consultant $200,000
  • continuum of learning competencies to support the full career landscape for the early childhood workforce
  • development of competencies for early childhood education programs
  • continuum of competencies to inform training requirements from entry level to leadership positions in the early childhood educator career path
  • competencies for CCAs to ECE 3s
N/A

Description: Competency continuum development project consultant initiative

Table 12: Retention strategies

Note: The tables below were modified for accessibility reasons.

Note: Financial allocations in the following tables use abbreviated notation

Table 12a: Retirement enhancement benefit initiative
Initiative Funding Indicators Targets Outcomes
Retirement enhancement benefit $2.9 million
  • number of active employees during the past 20 months to receive retirement enhancement benefits
  • pension enhancement amount ($) provided by federal funding
  • number of RRSP contribution benefits
  • RRSP benefit amount ($) provided by federal funding
  • up to $2.9 million in federal funding provided to enhance pensions and RRSPs
  • up to 6,261 sector employees receiving pension enhancement benefits (2,566 centre-based ECEs)
  • up to 235 home-based providers eligible for an RRSP benefit of $500
  • up to $117,500 in federal funding for RRSP contribution benefits
N/A

Description: Retirement enhancement benefit initiative

Table 12b: Tax-free savings account (TFSA) deposit initiative
Initiative Funding Indicators Targets Outcomes
Tax free savings account (TFSA) deposit $3.0 million
  • total number of ECEs receiving TFSA deposits
  • average TFSA deposit ($) per ECE
  • up to 2,761 ECEs eligible to receive TFSA deposits
  • estimated average of $1,083 per TFSA deposit for ECEs
N/A

Description: Tax-free savings account (TFSA) deposit initiative

Table 12b(i): TFSA deposit by years of service
Years of service Number of ECEs TFSA deposit Total TFSA deposits
ECEs 2 to 5 years 221 $450 $99,450
ECEs 5 to 10 years 635 $700 $444,500
ECEs 10+ years 552 $1,000 $552,000
ECEs more than 15 years 1,353 $1,400 $1,894,200
Grand Total 2,761 $887 (average) $2,990,150
Table 12c: Wage bridge benefit for ECE initiative
Initiative Funding Indicators Targets Outcomes
Wage bridge benefit, ECE $5.5 million
  • number of ECEs earning less than $20.90 per hour eligible for the Wage Bridge Benefit
  • average ECE wage prior to wage bridge benefit
  • minimum wage raised to $20.90 for eligible ECEs
  • total federal funding used for wage bridge benefit
  • 48 ECE 2s identified as eligible for a wage increase to $16.58 per hour
  • up to 960 ECE 2s identified as eligible for wage increase to $20.90 per hour
  • 115 ECE 2 Supervisors eligible for a wage increase to $23.32 per hour
  • up to $4.5 million in federal funding used for wage bridge benefits
N/A

Description: Wage bridge benefit for ECE initiative

Table 12d: Wage bridge benefit for CCA initiative
Initiative Funding Indicators Targets Outcomes
Wage bridge benefit, CCA $1.1 million
  • number of CCAs earning less than $13.11 per hour eligible for the wage bridge benefit
  • average CCA wage prior to wage bridge benefit
  • up to 815 CCAs identified as target for wage bridge benefit
  • up to $1.1M in federal funding used for wage bridge benefits
  • minimum wage raised to $13.11 per hour for eligible CCAs
N/A

Description: Wage bridge benefit for CCA initiative

Annex 4: Early childhood workforce funding for fiscal year 2021 to 2022

In this section

Whereas, Canada and Manitoba agree that the early childhood workforce is integral to providing high-quality ELCC.

Whereas, the Multilateral ELCC Framework is based on 5 key principles, one of which is ensuring ELCC systems are of high quality.

Whereas, the Multilateral ELCC Framework recognizes the importance of qualifications and training for the early childhood workforce as part of a high quality ELCC system.

Now therefore, the Parties agree as follows.

1.0 Purpose

1.1 Canada and Manitoba agree that for fiscal year 2021 to 2022 only, a one-time financial support from Canada to Manitoba will be used support the recruitment and retention of the early childhood workforce.

2.0 Area of focus

2.1 Manitoba agrees to utilize funding in licensed/regulated settings to support the attraction and retention of a qualified workforce, including through training, professional development, wages, bursary programs, tuition support and grants.

2.2 For greater clarity, activities that may support the objective of attracting and retaining a qualified workforce include but are not limited to: providing employment and training supports, lowering the cost of education for those seeking their early childhood educator degree/certificate, supporting the workforce in providing quality ELCC, and improving the ability to provide support to families more in need, including lower-income families; Indigenous families; lone-parent families; Black and racialized children; families from Official Language Minority Communities; families in underserved communities; those working non-standard hours and/or families with children with disabilities and children needing enhanced or individual supports. Needs also include having limited or no access to programs and services in the children's official language.

2.3 Manitoba may use up to 10% of its workforce funding allocation towards administration costs.

3.0 Financial provisions

3.1 In fiscal year 2021 to 2022, to be paid concurrently with the contribution provided under section 4.2. of the agreement, Canada has designated the following maximum amount to be transferred in total to all provinces and territories under this initiative with a fixed base rate of $2 million per year for each province and territory, and the balance of the funding on a per child (0 to 12) basis: $420,000,000 for the fiscal year beginning on April 1, 2021.

3.2 The final amount to be paid to Manitoba is determined by the formula F x K/L:

3.3 Subject to adjustment based on the formula described in section 3.2 of this Annex, Manitoba’s estimated share of the amount described in section 3.1 of this Annex will be:

Table 13: Estimated amount to be paid to Manitoba (subject to adjustment)
Fiscal year Estimated amount to be paid to Manitoba (subject to adjustment)
2021 to 2022 $19,166,459

For the purposes of the formula in section 3.2 of this Annex, the population of children aged 0 to 12 in Manitoba for the fiscal year 2021 to 2022 and the population of children aged 0 to 12 in all provinces and territories for that fiscal year are the respective populations as determined on the basis of the preliminary estimates of the respective populations on July 1 of that fiscal year. These estimates are released by Statistics Canada in September of each fiscal year.

3.4 Sections 4.6.1 to 4.6.5 of the agreement, respecting carry forward, apply to funds provided under this Annex.

4.0 Accountability

4.1 Action plan

4.1.1 In addition to the requirements outlined in the agreement under section 5.1, for fiscal year 2021 to 2022, Manitoba agrees to include the following additional information in the action plan (as set out in Schedule 1) for that fiscal year:

4.2 Reporting

4.2.1 In addition to the requirements outlined in the agreement under section 5.2, for fiscal year 2021 to 2022, Manitoba agrees to:

The financial statement shall be prepared in accordance with Canadian Generally Accepted Accounting Principles and the audit shall be performed by the Manitoba Auditor General or his/her delegate, or by an independent public accounting firm registered under the laws of Manitoba and shall be conducted in accordance with Canadian Generally Accepted Auditing Standards.

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