Canada – Yukon Canada-Wide Early Learning and Child Care Agreement - 2021 to 2026

Official title: Canada-Yukon Canada-Wide Early Learning and Child Care Agreement

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List of abbreviations
DESDA
Department of Employment and Social Development Act
ECD
Early Childhood Development
ECE
Early Childhood Educators
ELCC
Early Learning and Child Care
FES
Fall Economic Statement
FN
First Nations

Canada-Yukon Canada-Wide Early Learning and Child Care Agreement

Between:

Referred to collectively as the “Parties”.

Preamble

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

Whereas, Canada and Yukon will work together to build a community-based system of quality, regulated early learning and child care, aiming for all families to have access to high-quality, affordable, flexible and inclusive early learning and child care no matter where they live.

Whereas, Yukon supports licenced non-profit, for-profit, family day home and First Nations government-operated child care centres reflecting the unique challenges of child care for northern and remote communities, in order to work toward all Yukon families having access to high-quality, affordable, flexible and inclusive early learning and child care no matter where they live.

Whereas, Canada recognizes that Yukon has reduced fees by 50%, relative to 2019 fees and since the inception of its average $10/day universal program, and will continue to expand the provision of $10/day out-of-pocket parent fees for all regulated child care spaces.

Whereas, Building on the 2020 Fall Economic Statement (FES), Budget 2021 commits almost $30 billion over 5 years and provides permanent ongoing funding to work with provincial and territorial, and Indigenous partners to support quality, not-for-profit child care, and ensure early childhood educators are at the heart of the system. Combined with previous investments announced since 2015, approximately $9.2 billion per year ongoing will be invested in child care, including Indigenous Early Learning and Child Care, starting in fiscal year 2025 to 2026.

Whereas, Canada’s spending in early learning and child care is intended to increase until it is roughly shared with provinces and territories by fiscal year 2025 to 2026.

Whereas, to further support a lasting federal commitment, Canada is committed to tabling Early Learning and Child Care Legislation in fall 2021, following consultations with stakeholders, provincial, territorial, and Indigenous partners, to enshrine the principles of a Canada-wide ELCC system into law.

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 falling within DESDA.

Whereas, the Yukon Child Care Act authorizes the Yukon Minister to enter in agreements with the Government of Canada under which Canada undertakes to provide funding toward costs incurred by the Government of Yukon for the provision of early learning and child care.

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 child care programs and services.

Whereas, the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada has called “upon the federal, provincial, territorial, and Indigenous governments to develop culturally appropriate early childhood education programs for Aboriginal families”.

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, Yukon invests in early learning and child care for Indigenous children and Canada and Yukon agree to work collaboratively with Indigenous governing bodies and organizations to achieve a Canada-wide ELCC system.

Now therefore, Canada and Yukon agree as follows.

1.0 Vision for early learning and child care

1.1 Canada and Yukon agree that the long-term vision and objectives for Canada-wide ELCC set out in the Multilateral Framework will guide the investment of funds provided under this Agreement. This includes the vision that all families in Canada have access to high-quality, affordable, flexible and inclusive early learning and child care no matter where they live.

1.2 Canada and Yukon aspire to the following objectives:

  1. expand the provision of an average of $10/day for all regulated child care spaces
  2. creating more high-quality, affordable regulated child care spaces, primarily through not-for-profit and public child care and family child care providers
  3. addressing barriers to provide inclusive and flexible child care
  4. valuing the early childhood workforce and providing them with training and development opportunities

1.3 Canada and Yukon agree that progress toward this vision will be undertaken by prioritizing federal investments in support of regulated early learning and child care and for children under age 6.

2.0 Canada-wide early learning and child care objectives and areas of investment

2.1 Objectives

2.1.1 Canada and Yukon commit to the following provincial objectives.

  • Affordability
    • Yukon commits to using federal funding to expand the provision of an average of $10/day out-of-pocket parent fees for full-time regulated ELCC spaces for children under age 6.
  • Accessibility
    • Yukon commits to using federal funding to increase the net number of regulated child care spaces for children under age 6 by 110 spaces, which is the number of new spaces required to achieve a coverage rate of 59% by fiscal year 2025 to 2026.
  • In creating these 110 child care spaces, Yukon commits that:
    • federal funding will be exclusively used to support creation of regulated spaces in not-for-profit and public child care providers/operators, as well as family-based child care
    • federal funding will be exclusively used to support licensed child care delivery by licensed providers
  • Quality
    • Yukon commits to use federal funds to demonstrate meaningful progress on improving quality, including:
      • developing and implementing evidence based quality frameworks, standards, and tools for early learning and child care
      • developing a wage grid for early childhood educators (ECEs) and committing to its implementation
      • increasing the percentage of child care workers providing regulated child care in the province who fully meet Yukon’s certification requirements to at least 60% by fiscal year 2025 to 2026
  • Inclusive
    • Yukon commits to develop and fund a plan to ensure that new space creation ensures diverse and/or vulnerable children and families, including children with disabilities and children needing enhanced or individual supports, Indigenous children, Black and other racialized children, children of newcomers, and official language minorities, have spaces equivalent to or greater than their share of the population in the Yukon.
    • In supporting inclusive child care, Yukon commits:
      • to track the number of inclusive spaces with inclusive programming created/converted as well as the annual public expenditures on child care programming dedicated to children from diverse and/or vulnerable families
  • Data sharing and reporting
    • Yukon commits to share financial and administrative data (including micro data) needed to monitor progress in establishing the Canada-wide system.

2.1.2 Yukon’s policy and approach to achieving these objectives is set out in its Action Plan attached as Annex 2.

2.2 Eligible areas of investment

2.2.1 Yukon agrees to use funds provided by Canada under this Agreement to support the expansion of regulated child care including not-for-profit (including publically delivered and family home child care) early learning and child care programs and services, for children under the age of 6, where:

  1. regulated programs and services are defined as those that meet standards that are established and/or monitored by provincial/territorial governments and Indigenous governments and authorities
  2. not-for-profit providers/operations, which includes publically delivered operations, are defined as those that provide child care services to a community for a purpose other than generating a profit. Providers may generate a profit, but the surplus earnings, or other resources, are directed towards improving child care services rather than distributed for the personal benefit of owners, members, investors or to enhance asset growth
  3. early learning and child care programs and services are defined as those supporting direct care and early learning for children in settings including, but not limited to, regulated child care centres, regulated family child care homes, early learning centres, preschools and nursery schools

2.2.2 In developing and delivering its ELCC programs and services, Yukon agrees to take into account the needs of official language minority communities in its jurisdiction.

2.2.3 Acceptable investments under this Agreement may include, but are not limited to: capital and operating funding for regulated ELCC; fee subsidies; training, professional development and support for the early childhood workforce; quality assurance; parent information and referrals; and certain administration costs incurred by Yukon to support the growth and expansion of the child care system, and the implementation and administration of this Agreement.

2.2.4 Canada and Yukon also agree to promote, define, and deliver innovative approaches to enhance the quality, accessibility, affordability, flexibility, and inclusivity of ELCC systems, with consideration for those more in need.

2.2.5 Canada and Yukon agree that funding will be targeted toward regulated programs and activities, as described above, for children under age 6, that will have an impact on families, including families more in need such as lower-income families, Indigenous families, lone-parent families, and families in underserved communities, including Black and racialized families; families of children with disabilities and children needing enhanced or individual supports; and families with caregivers who are working non-standard hours. Needs also include having limited or no access to ELCC programs and services in the children’s official language.

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, 2026, unless terminated in writing by Canada or Yukon in accordance with the terms hereof in section 10. Funding provided under this Agreement, in accordance with section 4, will cover the period from April 1, 2021 to March 31, 2026.

3.2 Canada-wide early learning and child care bilateral agreements

3.2.1 Extension of this Agreement beyond March 31, 2026 will provide Yukon and Canada the opportunity to review and course correct, if required, and realign new priorities in future Agreements based on progress made to date.

3.2.2 In the event this Agreement is extended in accordance with the terms of section 3.2.1, Yukon may continue to use funding provided to cover the same eligible areas of investment as those covered through funding received for the period 2021 to 2026 subject to the terms and conditions of that extended agreement.

4.0 Financial provisions

4.1 These contributions are in addition to and not in lieu of those that Canada currently pays to Yukon through the Canada Social Transfer, or any other agreement Canada has with Yukon in relation to ELCC.

4.2 Allocation to Yukon

4.2.1 Subject to Parliamentary approval of appropriations, Canada has designated the following maximum amounts to be transferred in total to all provinces and territories under this initiative with a fixed base rate of $2 million/year for each province and territory and the balance of the funding on a per child (0 to 12) basis for the period starting on April 1, 2021 and ending on March 31, 2026. This funding is for financial commitments made as part of the 2021 to 2026 Canada-wide Early Learning and Child Care Agreements:

  1. $2,948,082,433 for the fiscal year beginning on April 1, 2021
  2. $4,489,349,839 for the fiscal year beginning on April 1, 2022
  3. $5,538,345,183 for the fiscal year beginning on April 1, 2023
  4. $6,492,201,954 for the fiscal year beginning on April 1, 2024
  5. $7,718,943,823 for the fiscal year beginning on April 1, 2025

4.2.2 Subject to annual adjustment based on the formula described in section 4.2.3, Yukon’s estimated projected share of the amounts described in section 4.2.1 will be:

Table 1: Yukon’s estimated projected share of financial provisions by fiscal year
Fiscal year Estimated amount to be paid to Yukon* (subject to annual adjustment)
2021 to 2022 $5,523,308
2022 to 2023 $7,243,339
2023 to 2024 $8,452,787
2024 to 2025 $9,542,037
2025 to 2026 $10,930,043

* The notional allocations for fiscal year 2021 to 2022 use Statistics Canada’s population estimates as at July 1st 2020. Notional allocations for fiscal year 2022 to 2023 through fiscal year 2025 to 2026 are calculated based on Statistics Canada’s longer-term population growth models using the Medium Growth M1 Population Growth Scenario from the previous fiscal year.

4.2.3 The final amount to be paid to Yukon for the fiscal year will be calculated using the formula F x K/L plus $2 million, where:

  • F is the annual total funding amount transferred to provinces and territories for the fiscal year minus the base funding from all provinces and territories
  • K is the total population of children aged 0 to 12 in Yukon on July 1 of that fiscal year, as determined using population estimates from Statistics Canada
  • L is the total population of children aged 0 to 12 on July 1 of that fiscal year, as determined using population estimates from Statistics Canada

4.2.4 For the purposes of the formula in section 4.2.3, the population of children aged 0 to 12 for Yukon for each fiscal year and the total 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.

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 will be paid in approximately equal semi-annual installments as follows:

  • in fiscal year 2021 to 2022, the first installment will be paid within 60 days after the signatures from both Parties are affixed to the Agreement. The second installment will be paid on or about November 15
  • 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 once conditions in section 5.2 are satisfied

4.4.2 The amount of the first installment will be an amount equal to 50% of the total amount of Canada’s maximum contribution to Yukon for the fiscal year, which will be calculated using Statistics Canada 0 to 12 population estimates from the previous year.

4.4.3 The amount of the second installment will be an amount equal to the balance of Canada’s contribution to Yukon for the fiscal year based on the actual amount of the contribution determined under sections 4.2.3 and 4.2.4 for the fiscal year.

4.4.4 Canada will notify Yukon at the beginning of the fiscal year of their notional amount. The actual amount will be based on the Statistics Canada preliminary children (0 to 12) population estimates on July 1 of the preceding fiscal year.

4.4.5 In fiscal year 2023 to 2024, Canada shall withhold payment of its first installment if Canada has not received from Yukon its planned Action Plan for fiscal year 2023 to 2024 through fiscal year 2025 to 2026, in accordance with requirements outlined in section 5.1.

4.4.6 Starting in fiscal year 2022 to 2023, Canada shall withhold payment of its first installment for a fiscal year if Canada has not received from Yukon all information requested under section 4.4.8 for the payment of its second installment from the previous fiscal year.

4.4.7 Starting in fiscal year 2022 to 2023, Canada may withhold amounts payable in respect of fiscal year if Yukon is unable to meet the objectives of the Agreement, in accordance with section 2.2.1.

4.4.8 Starting in fiscal year 2022 to 2023, Canada shall withhold payment of its second installment for that fiscal year until Yukon provides an annual progress report outlining data and results achieved from the previous fiscal year in accordance with section 5.2.2 (a) and its annual audited financial statement of the previous fiscal year in accordance with section 5.2.2 (c).

4.4.9 The sum of both semi-annual installments constitutes a final payment and is not subject to any further adjustment once the second installment of that fiscal year has been paid, unless there is a debt due to Canada, which requires repayment in accordance with section 4.7.

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 the funding by Yukon is subject to an annual appropriation by Yukon’s Legislature.

4.5 Maximum annual contribution in respect of administration costs

4.5.1 Canada’s contribution in respect of Yukon’s administration costs referred to in section 2.2.3 shall not exceed:

  • in the fiscal years covered under this Agreement an amount up to 10% of the maximum amount payable for those fiscal years

4.6 Carry forward

4.6.1 In the fiscal year 2021 to 2022, at the request of Yukon, and subject to approval of Canada’s Treasury Board, Yukon may retain and carry forward to the following fiscal year any unexpended funds remaining from Yukon’s annual contribution payable under section 4.2, up to a maximum of 50% of the contribution payable. Any unexpended funds in excess of 50% of the contribution payable represents an overpayment subject to section 4.7.

4.6.2 In fiscal year 2022 to 2023, at the request of Yukon, and subject to approval of Canada’s Treasury Board, Yukon may retain and carry forward to the following fiscal year any unexpended funds remaining from Yukon’s annual contribution payable under section 4.2, up to a maximum of 30% of the contribution payable. Any unexpended funds in excess of 30% of the contribution payable represents an overpayment subject to section 4.7.

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

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

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

4.6.6 All amounts carried forward to the next fiscal year, pursuant to section 4.6.1 must be spent by the end of that fiscal year. Yukon 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 payable pursuant to section 4.2 that remains unexpended at the end of that fiscal year and 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 In the event payments made to Yukon exceed the amount to which Yukon is entitled under the Agreement and/or unexpended funding is in excess of the carry forward allowance, the amount of the excess is a debt due to Canada and shall be repaid to Canada upon receipt of notice to do so and within the period specified in the notice.

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

4.8 Use of funds

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

4.8.2 Canada and Yukon agree that, within each fiscal year of the period of this Agreement, Yukon may move funding between the individual programming categories outlined in its Action Plan in Annex 2 to ensure the maximum use of funding. Yukon agrees to notify Canada in writing of any such change in funding allocation, including the rationale for the change. The change will be implemented upon agreement between Canada and Yukon.

4.8.3 Canada and Yukon agree that funds provided under this Agreement will be used to ensure improvements in ELCC as outlined in 2.1.1 and will not displace existing provincial or municipal spending in place on or before March 31, 2021.

5.0 Accountability

5.1 Action plan

5.1.1 Yukon has completed and shared its Action Plan for fiscal year 2021 to 2022 and fiscal year 2022 to 2023 (Annex 2). Subsequently, Yukon will provide an Action Plan for fiscal year 2023 to 2024 through fiscal 2025 to 2026 by the beginning of fiscal year 2023 to 2024. Yukon will publicly release their Action Plan which:

  1. outlines an implementation plan towards achieving objectives set out in Section 1, including priority areas for investment, and targets by indicator, within the Framework’s parameters
  2. identifies specific targets for each indicator that will be reported on annually for tracking progress in relation to the objectives set out under section 2.1.1, and as outlined in its Action Plan in Annex 2, which may include the following indicators below where, data is available:
    1. total number of ELCC spaces available during the fiscal year, broken down by age groups of child and type of setting (for example, for profit/not-for-profit/public regulated child care centres, regulated family child care homes, etc.)
    2. the number of net new spaces created during the fiscal year, broken down by age groups of child and type of setting (for example, for profit/not-for-profit/public regulated child care centres, regulated family child care homes, etc.)
    3. total number of inclusive (as defined in section 2.1.1) spaces created/converted, broken down by age group of child and type of setting
    4. average daily parental out-of-pocket fee for regulated child care spaces at the end of each fiscal year, including at the beginning of fiscal year 2021 to 2022 and at the end of 2022
    5. number of children under age 6 and 6 to 12 years receiving fee subsidies, broken down by families receiving partial and full subsidies
    6. number and proportion of children under age 6 and 6 to 12 years in flexible regulated ELCC arrangements and number and proportion of centers/providers that provide flexible arrangements (for example, non-traditional arrangements such as flexible/irregular hours, weekend and emergency services; and geographic distribution of spaces)
    7. number of children under age 6 and 6 to 12 years with disabilities and children needing enhanced or individual supports that are in regulated ELCC spaces
    8. number or proportion of child care service providers who provide services that are adapted to the needs of children with disabilities and children needing enhanced or individual supports
    9. number of Indigenous children under age 6 years in regulated ELCC spaces, distinction-based (First Nations, Inuit, Metis) where possible
    10. number of racialized Canadian children, including Black Canadian children under age 6 in regulated ELCC spaces
    11. number and percentage of staff working in regulated child care programs in Yukon who fully meet the Yukon’s certification/educational requirements
    12. annual public expenditure on training and professional development of the early childhood workforce
    13. wages of the early childhood workforce according to the categories of certification, including any wage enhancements, top-ups and/or supplements
  3. identifies additional jurisdiction-specific indicators for tracking progress in relation to the objectives of the Agreement
  4. describes how Yukon plans to address the ELCC needs of its children/families more in need, as described in section 2.2.5
    1. if available, number and proportion of children under age 6 and 6 to 12 years from families more in need that are in regulated ELCC spaces
  5. outline any additional available information to be reported annually that would be useful to assess progress, including:
    1. information about waiting lists to access regulated ELCC spaces
    2. total child care subsidies provided by parents’ income level
    3. average child-to-staff ratio among licensed child care service providers
    4. total annual investment in ELCC
  6. a description of consultation processes referred to in section 5.1.2, the type of groups consulted and annual priorities related to stakeholder feedback

5.1.2 Yukon will consult with parents, child care providers, experts, Indigenous peoples, official language minority communities and other interested parties as an important step in developing and revising its Action Plan. Yukon will outline the results of consultations in its Action Plan as well as through its annual reporting.

5.1.3 By the beginning of fiscal year 2023 to 2024, Yukon commits to share with Canada its fiscal year 2023 to 2024 through fiscal year 2025 to 2026 action plan. The action plan shall include the elements described in section 5.1 (i) a) to f). Once the Parties agree that the annual action plan is final, the action plan may be published by one or both of the Parties and Canada will be able to provide Yukon with its first payment for the fiscal year 2023 to 2024 according to section 4.4.

5.2 Reporting

5.2.1 In the first fiscal year, Yukon agrees to provide baseline data on indicators set out in their Action Plan as soon as possible after the Parties sign this agreement.

5.2.2 Starting in fiscal year 2022 to 2023, by no later than October 1 of each fiscal year during the Period of this Agreement, Yukon agrees to:

  1. provide to Canada an Annual Report in the format and manner decided jointly by Canada and Yukon. The report shall show separately the results attributable to the funding provided by Canada under this Agreement and shall include:
    1. description of the activities, expenditures and results of the Agreement as set out in Annex 2
    2. results achieved in working towards the vision for Canada-wide ELCC set out in this agreement, including average child care fees and progress toward the average 50% reduction in fees by the end of 2022 and reaching an average fee of $10/day by fiscal year 2025 to 2026
    3. results achieved according to the indicators and targets referred to in Annex 2
    4. the impact on families more in need, as described in section 2.2.5, including progress toward specific Yukon targets as described in Annex 2, such as the numbers of inclusive spaces supported by federal funding and by category
    5. additional available information to be reported annually that would be useful to assess progress
    6. description of any relevant consultation processes, the type of groups consulted and annual priorities related to stakeholder feedback referred to in Annex 2
    7. any additional results of an annual child care census as per section 5.2 (f) and any evaluation activities undertaken in the fiscal year, as available
  2. continue to provide to Canada additional data required for the publication of the annual National Progress Report
  3. provide to Canada an audited financial statement of revenues received from Canada under this Agreement during each fiscal year indicating:
    1. the revenue section of the statement shall show the amount received from Canada under this Agreement during the fiscal year
    2. the total amount of funding used for ELCC programs and services under section 2.2
    3. the administration costs incurred by Yukon in developing and administering ELCC programs under section 2.2.3
    4. if applicable, the amount of any amount carried forward by Yukon under section 4.6
    5. if applicable, the amount of any surplus funds that are to be repaid to Canada under section 4.7

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

  4. provide financial and administrative information, as required, to demonstrate progress in meeting the requirements in this Agreement
  5. Canada and Yukon recognize the importance of reporting to the public on results achieved under this Agreement. Within 365 days of the end of each fiscal year during the Period of this Agreement, Yukon agrees to report to the people of Yukon and Canada on the results and expenditures of ELCC programs and services. The report shall show separately the results attributable to the funding provided by Canada under this Agreement and be consistent with the Annual Report outlined under section 5.2.2 (a)
  6. to inform reporting on results related to Yukon Action Plan, Yukon agrees to undertake, and share results with Canada from, an annual census of child care providers and other participants in the sector in Yukon to collect information, including: number of children enrolled, capacity (number of spaces), number of ECEs, ECE wages and qualifications, fee charged to parents, subsidies, and number of First Nations, Inuit or Metis child care spaces supported, etc. Costs of undertaking such a census would be eligible expenses under this agreement, to the maximum set out in section 4.5.1

5.2.3 Canada, with prior notice to Yukon, may incorporate all or any part or parts of the Annual Report described under section 5.2.2 (a) 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.

5.3 Audit

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

5.4 Evaluation

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

5.4.2 Yukon may be asked to participate in the evaluation by Canada of the initiatives under this Agreement and agrees to provide information as requested by Canada during and following the Agreement in order for Canada to evaluate relevant initiatives under this Agreement. Evaluation results will be made available to the public.

6.0 Long-term collaboration

6.1 Understanding that building a new social program is complex, and that both governments are committed to achieving $10/day child care, Canada and Yukon will create an officials-level Implementation Committee that will monitor progress towards this goal in consultation with stakeholders. Yukon will provide data to support the work of the Implementation Committee.

6.2 Canada and Yukon, through the Implementation Committee and/or Designated Officials, agree to meet at least twice annually, timed to coincide with the planning and reporting cycles, or as agreed to by the Parties to discuss and exchange on issues related to this Agreement, including:

  1. administration and management of the Agreement, including providing a forum for the exchange of information on annual planning priorities and reporting
  2. exchanging information on local challenges and priorities and the results of engagement with relevant stakeholders, including official language minority communities
  3. providing a forum to exchange information on best practices and have discussions related to the implementation of the Agreement, for example, status of data collection, results and the planning of expenditures
  4. improving data collection and dissemination on key ELCC information, including culturally oriented ELCC information for Indigenous children, Black and other racialized children, newcomer children, and other groups of children that may require additional consideration for accessing programs and services
  5. review and provide direction to resolve any issues arising from the implementation and management of this Agreement, and from the evaluation of provincial programs supported under this Agreement
  6. monitor progress towards the shared goal of $10/day child care, in consultation with stakeholders
  7. in December 2022, report to the Governments of Canada and Yukon on progress towards Canada and Yukon’s shared goals to date and for the remaining term of the Agreement

6.3 Canada and Yukon agree to share and release data as available, and share knowledge, research and information on effective and innovative practices in ELCC, to further support the development of and reporting on quality and outcomes. Canada and Yukon agree to work together, and with stakeholders, towards the development of additional measures and indicators that could be included in bilateral agreements in the future that could reinforce the vision for Canada-wide ELCC.

7.0 Communications

7.1 Canada and Yukon 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 and Yukon recognize the importance of ensuring that the public is informed of Canada’s financial contributions to Yukon’s ELCC programs and services, funded under this Agreement.

7.3 Yukon agrees to acknowledge Canada’s contribution by including federal identification in all public communications and marketing products, promotional material and advertising.

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 Yukon 10 days advance notice of public communications related to the Framework, bilateral agreements, and results of the investments of this Agreement.

7.5 Yukon reserves the right to conduct public communications, announcements, events, outreach and promotional activities about the Framework and bilateral agreements. Yukon 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.

7.6 Canada and Yukon agree to participate in a joint announcement upon signing of this Agreement.

7.7 Canada and Yukon agree to work together to identify opportunities for joint announcements relating to programs funded under this Agreement.

7.8 Yukon will make best efforts to require service providers, funded under this Agreement to display federal identification to recognize that the programs and services provided receive Canada’s financial assistance.

7.9 Yukon agrees that promotional communications to all groups receiving funding through this Agreement (for example, child care centres, regulated family child care homes, early learning centres, preschools and nursery schools, before-and after-school programming, businesses, associations, unions, training institutions, universities, colleges, and career colleges) will include federal identification and recognize Canada’s financial assistance.

7.10 Canada will provide a mutually agreed upon standard letter to Yukon for use in notifying all recipients of funding from this Agreement, to include federal and Yukon identification and recognize Canada’s financial assistance. Parties may collectively agree on an alternate version that appropriately identifies and recognizes both Parties.

8.0 Dispute resolution

8.1 Canada and Yukon 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 Yukon 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 Yukon, as the case may be, may notify the other party in writing of the failure or breach. Upon such notice, Canada and Yukon will endeavour to resolve the issue in dispute bilaterally through their Designated Officials.

8.3 If a dispute cannot be resolved by Designated Officials, then the dispute will be referred to the Deputy Ministers most responsible for ELCC, and if it cannot be resolved by them, then the federal Minister and Yukon Minister shall endeavour to resolve the dispute.

8.4 If Yukon has failed to comply with its obligations or undertakings and where Yukon and federal Ministers are unable to resolve related disputes, a termination of the agreement may be pursued in accordance with section 10.

9.0 Amendments to the agreement

9.1 This Agreement, including all attached annexes, 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.

10.0 Termination

10.1 Canada may terminate this Agreement at any time if the terms of this Agreement are not respected by Yukon by giving at least 6 months written notice of Canada’s intention to terminate the Agreement. Yukon may terminate this Agreement at any time if the terms of this Agreement are not respected by Canada by giving at least 6 months written notice of Yukon’s intention to terminate the Agreement.

10.2 As of the effective date of termination of this Agreement under section 10.1, Canada shall have no obligation to make any further payments to Yukon after the date of effective termination.

11.0 Notice

11.1 Any notice, information or document provided under this Agreement will be effectively 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:

Social Policy Directorate
140 Promenade du Portage
Gatineau QC  K1A 0J9
NC-SSP-ELCC-GD@hrsdc-rhdcc.gc.ca

The address for notice or communication to Yukon shall be:

Early Learning and Child Care
Department of Education
Government of Yukon
Box 2703
Whitehorse YK  Y1A 2C6
earlylearning@yukon.ca

12.0 General

12.1 This Agreement, including Annexes 1 and 2 comprise the entire Agreement entered into by the Parties with respect to the subject matter hereof.

12.2 This Agreement does not displace federal investments in ELCC, based on the Multilateral Early Learning and Child Care Framework, Annex 1, concluded on June 12, 2017.

12.3 This Agreement shall be interpreted according to the laws of Canada and Yukon.

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

12.5 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.

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

Signed on behalf of Canada by the Minister of Families, Children and Social Development at Whitehorse this 23 day of July, 2021.

[Signed by] The Honourable Ahmed Hussen, Minister of Families, Children and Social Development.

Signed on behalf of Yukon by the Minister of Education at Whitehorse this 23 day of July, 2021.

[Signed by] The Honourable Jeanie McLean, Minister of Education.

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

Part 1 – Yukon’s action plan for fiscal year 2021 to 2022 and fiscal year 2022 to 2023

In this section

Introduction

In 2020, the Government of Yukon accepted the recommendation from the territory’s Putting People First report, prepared by an independent expert panel, that it work towards a fully-funded, universal early childhood education program for all children over age 1 by: transferring the mandate for early learning and child care services from Health and Social Services to Education; moving towards universal access to early learning and child care for all Yukon families, including increasing the current subsidy system; and increasing training and certification opportunities for child care providers.

To address this recommendation, the government directed the Departments of Education and Health and Social Services to develop a Yukon universal early learning child care model similar to the Quebec model. This model was implemented on April 1, 2021, and the Department of Education continues to work with partners and stakeholders, including Yukon First Nation governments, to further develop and refine the model.

The implementation of universal early learning and child care (ELCC) in Yukon was preceded in the Winter and Spring of 2021 by engagement with: the Yukon Child Care Board; the Yukon Child Care Association; Yukon University; Child Care Centre and Day Home Operators from across Yukon; the Network for Healthy Early Human Development/Partners for Children; the Child Development Centre; the Early Childhood Educators of Yukon Territory; the Yukon First Nations Education Directorate; the Yukon First Nations Education Commission; the Yukon First Nations Health Commission; and individual Yukon First Nations.

Education and Health and Social Services also worked together to transfer the Child Care Services Unit and mandate for early learning from Health and Social Services to Education effective April 1, 2021. The legislative changes necessary to formally transfer the mandate for early learning and child care from Education were passed in May, 2021.

Summary of the new Yukon universal early learning and child care funding model

The Government of Yukon has budgeted a total of $25,202,000 in fiscal year 2021 to 2022 to support the new program, and acknowledged that costs in fiscal year 2021 to 2022 could be as high as $37 million. All licensed operators have the choice to opt in to the new program within 2 years by signing Transfer Payment Agreements. As of July 2021, every licensed operator in Yukon except one had opted in to the new program.

Reduction in parent fees

Under the new program, the Government of Yukon provides licensed operators with $700 per month for each child in full-time child care, which must be fully and immediately applied to reduce the monthly payments made by parents (this is pro-rated for children in part-time child care). The new program also includes fee increase limits to ensure that fees charged to parents remain both sustainable and affordable and in line with rates charged by other local providers delivering the same type of child care.

Under Yukon’s universal child care program, average parent fees are now less than $10 per day, among the lowest in Canada.

Reduction in operational and administrative expenses for operators

The government provides additional funding to operators to reduce their operational and administrative expenses and to support program needs.

Funding for high-quality early learning environments

The government provides funding to licensed operators to support them in developing culturally relevant, high-quality early learning environments. For many centres, this includes programing that incorporates First Nations ways of knowing, doing and being.

Funding to increase wages for early childhood educators

The government provides funding to operators to be applied directly to increase the wages paid by operators to their early childhood educators. To support educator recruitment and retention, a new mandatory wage scale was instituted on April 1, providing a minimum wage of $29.16 for a full-time educator with an early childhood education diploma ($30.96 in rural communities), the highest minimum ECE wages in Canada.

Ongoing development of the universal early learning and child care model

The Government of Yukon will continue to refine the new program through ongoing collaboration with First Nations Governments, the Yukon Child Care Board, stakeholders and Yukoners by prioritizing the following objectives:

  • build capacity and high quality programs by working with operators in the design and delivery of their early learning programs, including by providing early learning support from the Department of Education
  • develop qualified skilled and valued early learning professionals
  • encourage Yukoners to pursue early childhood education as a long-term career
  • work with partners and stakeholders on a fair wage schedule for qualified early childhood educators
  • establish a benefits plan for early childhood educators, to be cost-shared by operators, employees, and the government
  • work with partners and stakeholders to implement an early learning curriculum framework
  • amend existing policies to promote quality early learning programs
  • partner with post-secondary institutions, including Yukon University, to support early childhood educator programs, in particular that are accessible to residents of rural Yukon communities
  • continue to partner with Yukon First Nation governments to address their early learning and child care needs

Recognizing the unique northern and rural landscape, Yukon’s licensed child care system incorporates non-profit, for-profit, family day home and First Nations government-operated facilities. Funding allocations under the agreement will support the delivery of high quality, accessible and inclusive early learning programs for Yukon children enrolled in all types of programs.

Investments by Yukon and Canada directed towards increasing the number of child care spaces will support the regulated Yukon system, with the goal of ensuring that the greatest number of families possible can benefit from more affordable and inclusive child care, in a manner that responds to specific needs of all Yukon communities.

Yukon and Canada have agreed to work together to maintain and further enhance inclusive, universal, accessible, high quality child care that costs less than $10/day.

Yukon’s early learning and child care system

Yukon’s early learning and child care system is a blend of non-profit, for-profit, family day home and First Nations government-operated facilities. Approximately 70% of programs are for-profit owner/operator models; this number includes centres in remote northern communities and family day homes. Yukon Government provides funding to 8 Yukon First Nations governments for the operation of their public child care programs. This funding includes direct transfers to First Nations-operated ELCC programs (more than $3 million annually invested by Yukon Government directly to First Nation governments), as well as direct, per-child subsidies.

In order to control possible escalation of fees and profits, in particular by for-profit daycares, the Yukon universal child care system introduced caps on the amount by which child care centres can raise their fees. Annual fee increases are limited to 3% for those charging within 10% of the Yukon average, and 1% for those charging 10% or more than the Yukon average. Operators also agree to pay Early Childhood Educator wages based on a wage scale with mandatory minimum contributions by the operators.

Yukon’s universal child care system was developed after extensive engagement with ELCC operators, partners and First Nations governments. Under Yukon’s universal child care program, average parent fees are now less than $10/day, among the lowest in Canada. The median early childhood educator wage is the highest in Canada. Yukon’s universal child care system has been operational since April 1, 2021 and has been quickly recognized nationally as one of the leading systems in Canada. Yukon made clear commitments to respect the diversity of the sector and avoid 2-tier or differentiated systems of funding. The Government of Yukon will work with Yukon First Nations and communities to enhance early learning and child care programming in Yukon so that as many children as possible have access to affordable, high quality early learning and child care opportunities. Yukon will also work with its First Nation government partners to continue to support culturally inclusive learning and programming.

Table 2. Number of providers by type of provider
Type of provider Number of providers
For-profit 30
Family day home 22
Non-profit 12
First Nations 8
Total 72

Key commitments

Shared vision: Yukon and Canada are committed to collaborating on a universal early learning and child care system that is inclusive, affordable and accessible to all Yukon children and families.

Yukon is a leader in early learning and child care: On April 1, 2021, Yukon introduced a universal child care system. Yukon will invest nearly $25.2 million annually in its early learning and child care system. Canada and Yukon agree to maintain and further develop Yukon’s system to meet the needs of families and support the growth and development of children.

Affordability: This agreement demonstrates a clear commitment to further expand the provision of average fees of $10/day or less for child care.

Accessibility: Yukon and Canada agree to make investments directed towards increasing the number of child care spaces so as many children as possible have access to affordable, high quality early learning and child care opportunities. This will include accessibility to culturally appropriate supports and programming.

Quality: Yukon invests in high quality early learning and child care in order to provide rich early learning experiences and environments and views children as capable, competent learners who are full of potential. Yukon recognizes the importance of qualifications and training for the early childhood work force.

Inclusivity: This agreement supports inclusive programming for children that require additional supports to access early learning programs, as well as vulnerable children and children from diverse populations. This agreement supports a clear commitment to continue to work collaboratively with Yukon First nations to ensure Indigenous children will have access to affordable, high-quality and culturally appropriate ELCC.

Stable funding for operators: Canada and Yukon commit to stable funding to support child care operators to develop high-quality early learning environments.

Early Childhood Educators are valued and respected: Yukon’s universal child care system values early childhood educators and ensures they are paid a fair wage that reflects their skills, education and experience. Through the workforce development agreement, it also recognizes the importance of ensuring quality training and professional development are accessible.

Table 3. Federal Commitments on Canada-wide early learning and child care to Yukon
Fiscal year Notional allocation
2021 to 2022 $5,523,308
2022 to 2023 $7,243,339
2023 to 2024 $8,452,787
2024 to 2025 $9,542,037
2025 to 2026 $10,930,043
Total $41,691,514

Table 4. Yukon investments in ELCC
Priority areas Fiscal year
2021 to 2022 ($)
Fiscal year
2022 to 2023* ($)
Affordability 16,200,822 16,200,822
Accessibility 50,000 50,000
Quality child care 3,406,000 3,406,000
Indigenous 2,903,302 2,903,302
Inclusion 901,586 901,586
Child care administration 1,740,786 1,740,786
Total territory investment 25,202,496 25,202,496

*Fiscal year 2022 to 2023 numbers are estimates and are subject to appropriation

Priority 1: Increased affordability

Fee reductions for parents

Under Yukon’s new funding model, increased funds are provided to operators based on them passing on savings to parents via reduced fees.

Under the program, the government provides licensed operators with $700/month for each child in full-time child care, which must be fully and immediately applied to reduce the monthly payments made by parents (this is pro-rated for children in part-time child care). The new program also includes fee increase limits to ensure that fees charged to parents remain both sustainable and affordable and in line with rates charged by other local providers delivering the same type of child care.

Parents and caregivers pay the difference between the fee charged by the child care provider and the funding provided by Yukon government. Low-income earners are able to apply for an income-tested subsidy to pay the difference, so in essence most lower income families are provided with free child care.

In the future, Yukon will introduce legislative and regulatory changes that will modernize the regulatory framework and entrench these changes in law.

Funding to reduce fee payments is paid based on the assumption of regular full-time or part-time attendance. Under this program, average child care fees in Yukon have dropped to below $10/day.

Table 5. Funding provided to operators per type of space
Type of space Funding provided to operators per space
Infant $700.00
Toddler $700.00
Preschool $700.00
Kindergarden $700
(full-time – not in school)
Kindergarden $350
(part-time – in school)
School age $300.00
(during the school year)
School age $500.00
(during the summer)

Example

A parent with an infant (0 to 18 months) in a child care centre who previously paid $850/month now pays $850 (child care fee)-$700 (funding) = $150 or approximately $7.50/day.

A lower income earner could qualify for a full or partial subsidy to offset some or all of the remaining parent contribution.

The following table was modified for accessibility reasons.

Table 6. Universal reduction of parent fees
Indicators Fiscal year 2021 to 2022 target Fiscal year 2021 to 2022 investment1 Fiscal year 2022 to 2023 target Fiscal year 2022 to 2023 investment2 Cumulative targets for fiscal year 2021 to 2022 Total investment for fiscal year 2021 to 2022 to fiscal year 2022 to 20233
Number of subsidized spaces (Federal investment) 195 $1,673,308 305 $2,593,339 305 $4,266,647
Average parent fees (average of all full-time spaces ages 0-5) Less than $10/day $1,673,308 Less than $10/day $2,593,339 Less than $10/day $4,266,647
  • 1 Cells in this column where split for accessibility reasons. Fiscal year 2021 to 2022 investment of $1,673,308 will be allocated to both indicators.
  • 2 Cells in this column where split for accessibility reasons. Fiscal year 2022 to 2023 investment of $2,593,339 will be allocated to both indicators.
  • 3 Cells in this column where split for accessibility reasons. Total investment for fiscal year 2021 to 2022 to fiscal year 2022 to 2023 of $4,266,647 will be allocated to both indicators.

For fiscal year 2021 to 2022, Yukon budgeted $16,200,822 towards affordability for parents. Federal funding will be allocated towards unbudgeted investments to reduce fees, based on increased enrolment in programs, allow funding flexibility to accommodate innovative solutions in isolated, rural communities with limited capacity and the creation the new spaces.

Priority 2: Increased accessibility

Yukon Government is working with Yukon First Nations, communities and partners to enhance early learning and child care programming so that as many children as possible have access to affordable, high quality early learning and child care opportunities.

Yukon will increase the net number of licensed child care spaces for children aged 0 to 5 by at least 110 full time equivalent spaces by the end of fiscal year 2025 to 2026. This is the estimated number of new full time equivalent spaces required to reach a 59% coverage rate in Yukon and to meet the expected demand for spaces in the territory for fiscal year 2025 to 2026. In March 2019, there were 1682 total licensed child care spaces and as of March 2021 there are 1,869 spaces.

Table 7. Current licensed spaces
Type of program Number of spaces (March 2021)
For profit 928
Family Day Home 210
Non-profit 450
First Nations 218
Total 1,869

A total of 50 new spaces will be created under this Action Plan, with details for the remaining 60 spaces to be provided in the fiscal year 2023 to 2024 to fiscal year 2025 to 2026 Action Plan.

Funding for First Nations, minority language and non-profit programs

Recognizing there is a need for additional spaces, this funding is available to First Nations governments, non-profit French First language child care centres and other non-profit programs to support the creation of new child care spaces though program expansion or the development of new programs.

This funding can support equipment purchases, renovations, planning and capital in order to create new licensed child care spaces or sustainably operate existing spaces, when the center’s viability may be at risk. This funding is in addition to operation funding currently provided to centers (over $3 million is invested in First Nation’s centers annually).

Yukon will continue to examine what additional supports new and future centres require, for example, looking at addressing capacity among non-profit volunteer boards.

Table 8. Improved access to licensed child care spaces
Indicator Fiscal year
2021 to 2022
target
Fiscal year
2021 to 2022
investment
Fiscal year
2022 to 2023
target
Fiscal year
2022 to 2023
investment
Cumulative targets for fiscal year
2021 to 2022
Total investment for fiscal year
2021 to 2022
to fiscal year
2022 to 2023
Funding for FN, minority language and non-profit centres 25 new spaces created $500,000 25 new spaces created $500,000 50 new spaces created $1,000,000

Priority 3: Focus on quality

Yukon invests in high quality early learning and child care in order to provide rich early learning experiences and environments for children.

All programs receiving funding in Yukon must agree to cooperate with the Yukon government in the ongoing development of a high-quality early learning child care system. Recipients of government funding agree to collaborate with the department on the implementation and development of their early learning programs. They also agree to participate in improvement activities such as quality measurement and professional development.

Yukon recently hired 3 new early learning support specialists. Specialists work with child care programs to improve program design and delivery, mentor and develop early childhood educators, and support the continuous quality improvement of programs.

Quality assurance in programs is further promoted by the Yukon Child Care Board. The Yukon Child Care Board is a legislated body which makes recommendations to the Minister of Education, on any issues that pertain to early learning and child care. The Board encourages the development and support of child care services which meet the needs of parents and children in the Yukon, reviews policies, programs and hears appeals under the Child Care Act.

Support for early childhood educators

The quality of the system depends on the availability of qualified early childhood educators. They must be well educated, well respected and fairly compensated. In April 2021, the Yukon introduced a fair wage schedule for early childhood educators.

Table 9. Current Whitehorse wage enhancements
Early childhood educator level Wage enhancement Minimum wage plus enhancement Mandatory ECE minimum wage
Level 0 n/a n/a n/a
Level 1 $4.12 13.85 + 4.12 $17.97
Level 1A $6.01 13.85 + 6.01 $19.86
Level 2 $7.44 13.85 + 7.44 $21.29
Level 2A $9.96 13.85 + 9.96 $23.81
Level 3 equivalent $12.31 13.85 + 12.31 $26.16
Level 3 $15.31 13.85 + 15.31 $29.16

Table 10. Current rural wage enhancements
Early childhood educator level Wage enhancement Minimum wage plus enhancement Mandatory ECE minimum wage
Level 0 $1.85 13.85 + 1.85 $15.70
Level 1 $4.49 13.85 + 4.49 $18.34
Level 1A $6.71 13.85 + 6.71 $20.56
Level 2 $8.39 13.85 + 8.39 $22.24
Level 2A $11.35 13.85 + 11.35 $25.20
Level 3 equivalent $14.11 13.85 + 14.11 $27.96
Level 3 $17.11 13.85 + 17.11 $30.96

Federal funding will be directed towards the operational expenses of programs to further support and retain early childhood educators. It is anticipated that at least 325 educators will be supported.

Yukon University and other post-secondary institutions

Yukon will demonstrate meaningful progress on improving quality, by increasing the percentage of early childhood educators providing regulated child care in the territory who fully meet Yukon’s certification requirements to at least 60% by fiscal year 2025 to 2026.

Under Yukon regulations, training requirements stipulate: 50% of staff are child care worker 1 (60-hour course in early childhood development (ECD)); 30% are child care worker 2 (1-year ECD certificate); 20% are child care worker 3 (2-year ECD diploma.) Programs may receive exemptions if the program does not meet requirements but has a training plan in place and that staff are taking training and are working towards compliance.

Table 11. Early childhood educators in Yukon as of May 2021
No training Level 1 Level 1A Level 2 Level 2A Level 3 with exemption Level 3 Total
26 64 11 20 5 86 84 296

Federal funding will be directed towards post-secondary institutions to offer additional courses in order to train more early childhood educators for Yukon’s early learning and child care system, with a goal of at least 40 additional students enrolled in early childhood education courses by end of fiscal year 2022 to 2023.

Cultural Enhancement Fund

Recognizing Yukon’s blend of cultures and backgrounds, federal investments will be directed to create a fund that enables child care operators to develop and offer culturally inclusive programming, with a target of at least 250 children benefiting from cultural programming annually. Operators can apply to the fund to create and offer programming that could feature:

  • place based, on the land and experiential learning opportunities
  • Yukon First Nations ways of know, doing and being
  • Francophone Yukoner language and culture
  • languages and cultures of newcomers to Canada and other diverse populations
Developing and implementing evidence-based quality frameworks, standards, and tools for early learning and child care

In order to receive funding to operate centres, all operators agree to collaborate with the Yukon government by participating in discussions regarding continuous improvement activities and professional development. Once finalized, operators agree to participate in the implementation of an early learning curriculum framework. In the future, funding for centres will be tied to evidence-based quality assessment standards.

These measures better support the continuation between early learning in child care and kindergarten as part of the transition into the kindergarten through 12 school system.

Federal funding will support capacity in at least 20 centers across the Yukon to develop and implement evidence-based quality frameworks, standards, and tools for early learning and child care.

Yukon further commits to increasing annual spending for training and professional development at least in proportion to the increase in regulated child care spaces.

For fiscal year 2021 to 2022, Yukon has budgeted $3,406,000 towards quality enhancements.

Table 12. Focus on quality
Indicator Fiscal year
2021 to 2022
target
Fiscal year
2021 to 2022
investment
Fiscal year
2022 to 2023
target
Fiscal year
2022 to 2023
investment
Cumulative targets for fiscal year
2021 to 2022
to fiscal year
2022 to 2023
Total investment for fiscal year
2021 to 2022
to fiscal year
2022 to 2023
Support for early childhood educators At least 300 educators supported $1,100,000 At least 325 educators $1,400,000 At least 325 educators supported $2,500,000
Post-secondary institutions At least 20 additional students enrolled in early childhood education courses $500,000 At least 20 additional students enrolled in early childhood education courses $500,000 At least 40 additional students enrolled in early childhood education courses $1,000,000
Cultural Enhancement Fund At least 250 children benefit from cultural programming $400,000 At least 250 children benefit from cultural programming $400,000 At least 250 children benefit from cultural programming $800,000
Quality frameworks Increased capacity in at least 5 centres to develop and implement evidence-based quality frameworks $200,000 Increased capacity in at least 15 centres to develop and implement evidence-based quality frameworks $200,000 Increased capacity in at least 20 centres to develop and implement evidence-based quality frameworks $400,000

Priority 4: Inclusivity

Yukon’s early learning and child care system strives for inclusion of all children and respects and values diversity, which includes:

  • children with disabilities and children needing enhanced or individual support
  • children and families who are experiencing vulnerability
Supports for children with disabilities and children needing enhanced or individual supports

Yukon government currently invests $901,586 in inclusion through the Supported Child Care Worker Program. This program provides funding to support inclusive programming for children that require additional supports to access licensed child care programs. The intent of this funding program is to allow children with disabilities and children needing enhanced or individual supports to be included in a child care setting with supports they might need in order to take part in the regular daily program.

Under this program, funding is provided to hire early childhood educators to work with children, typically on a one-to-one basis in order to support their inclusion and learning. Centers can also apply for funding for renovations or equipment purchases to support an inclusive and accessible early learning environment suitable for children with additional needs.

Federal funding will be directed towards supporting additional children under this program based on increased enrolment in programs and the creation the new spaces.

Federal funding will be used to complete a review of the Supported Child Care Worker Program and develop and fund a plan to enhance inclusion of all children with disabilities and children needing enhanced or individual supports.

Supports for vulnerable children

Currently, Yukon funds 8 First Nations ELCC programs, serving more than 200 children. These programs offer culturally inclusive learning and programming, including First Nations ways of knowing, doing and being and First Nations languages.

Yukon funds 3 French first language programs: 1 non-profit child care centre and 2 family day homes. Through these programs, francophone Yukoners able to access early learning and child care programs in the official language of their choosing and francophone children are better prepared for French first language school. As outlined in priority 2, federal funding will support the expansion of minority language spaces in regulated child care centers.

In order to assist lower income families with cost of licensed child care, Yukon offers the Yukon Child Care Subsidy. Through this legislated, income tested program, a lower income earner could qualify for a full or partial subsidy to offset some or all of the remaining parent contribution after the universal fee reduction is applied. As of March 2021, the program applied to approximately 20% of spaces.

Federal funding will be used to develop and fund a plan to ensure that vulnerable children and children from diverse populations, have equitable access to regulated child care spaces, in proportion to their presence in Yukon’s population. This will include, but not limited to, children living in low income, First Nations children, Black and other racialized children, children of newcomers to Canada, and official language minorities. The plan will propose policy changes or additional program supports ensure Yukon’s child care system is welcoming and inclusive of all children.

Table 13. Inclusivity
Indicators Fiscal year
2021 to 2022
target
Fiscal year
2021 to 2022
investment
Fiscal year
2022 to 2023
target
Fiscal year
2022 to 2023
investment
Cumulative targets for fiscal year
2021 to 2022
to fiscal year
2022 to 2023
Total investment for fiscal year
2021 to 2022
to fiscal year
2022 to 2023
Support francophone children Yukoners Federal funds support children (TBD in fiscal year 2021 to 2022) TBD TBD TBD TBD TBD
Supported Child Care Worker Program Federal funds support at least 8 children with additional needs $500,000

Federal funds support at least 16 children with additional needs

Program review complete, program changes devolved and implemented

$1,000,000 16 children with additional needs are supported $1,500,000
Plan for vulnerable children Sans objet Sans objet Develop and fund a plan to ensure that vulnerable children have equitable access to regulated child care spaces. $100,000 Develop and fund a plan to ensure that vulnerable children have equitable access to regulated child care spaces $100,000

Reporting and administrative funding

The Canada-wide ELCC Agreement provides for administrative funding of up to 10% of the maximum annual allocation to support costs incurred by Yukon to support the growth, expansion, implementation and administration of the Canada-wide ELCC Agreement.

Yukon currently collects data on: total number of childcare spaces, attendance, fees, the number and percentage of staff working in regulated child care programs who fully meet the Yukon’s certification requirement, expenditure on training and professional development and wages of the workforce according to the categories of certification.

Yukon will further refine and enhance its data collection. As per section 5.1 (b) of the Canada-wide ELCC Agreement, new data Yukon will collect may include:

  • enrollment and attendance
  • total number of spaces broken down by age groups and types of setting
  • the number of net new spaces created during the fiscal year, broken down by age groups of child and type of setting
  • total number of inclusive spaces created/converted, broken down by age group of child and type of setting
  • average daily parental out-of-pocket fee for regulated child care spaces at the end of each fiscal year, including at the beginning of fiscal year 2021 to 2022 and at the end of 2022
  • number of children under age 6 and 6 to 12 years receiving fee subsidies, broken down by families receiving partial and full subsidies
  • number and proportion of children under age 6 and 6 to 12 years in flexible regulated ELCC arrangements and number and proportion of centers/providers that provide flexible arrangements (for example, non-traditional arrangements such as flexible/irregular hours, weekend and emergency services; and geographic distribution of spaces)
  • number of children under age 6 and 6 to 12 years with disabilities and children needing enhanced or individual supports that are in regulated ELCC spaces
  • number or proportion of child care service providers who provide services that are adapted to the needs of children with disabilities and children needing enhanced or individual supports
  • number of Indigenous children under age 6 years in regulated ELCC spaces, distinction-based (First Nations, Inuit, Metis) where possible
  • number of racialized Canadian children, including Black Canadian children under age 6 in regulated ELCC spaces

To inform reporting on results related to Yukon Action Plan, Yukon will undertake, and share with Canada, an annual census of child care providers and other participants in the sector in Yukon to collect information, including: number of children enrolled, capacity (number of spaces), number of ECEs, ECE wages and qualifications, fee charged to parents, subsidies, number of First Nations, Inuit or Metis child care spaces supported.

In the 2 years of this Action Plan (fiscal year 2021 to 2022 and fiscal year 2022 to 2023), administration funding will be invested to support data collection, reporting, accountability and program implementation. This may include capacity to develop an operator portal that allows for enrollment of children, online applications, evaluation, and reporting, to support accurate and reliable data collection to inform accountability, reporting and ongoing policy development.

Table 14. Reporting and administrative funding
Initiative Fiscal year
2021 to 2022
target
Fiscal year
2021 to 2022
investment
Fiscal year
2022 to 2023
target
Fiscal year
2022 to 2023
investment
Enhanced data and analytics capacity and annual census Enhanced data and analytics capacity to support data modelling, analysis, reporting requirements and an annual census $515,000 Enhanced data and analytics capacity to support data modelling, analysis, reporting requirements and an annual census $515,000
Reporting Audit $35,000 Audit $35,000

Carry‐forward amounts

In fiscal year 2021 to 2022, Yukon may retain and carry forward to the following fiscal year any unexpended funds remaining up to a maximum of 50% of the contribution payable. Any unexpended funds in excess of 50% of the contribution payable represents an overpayment and is payable to Canada.

In fiscal year 2022 to 2023, Yukon may retain and carry forward to the following fiscal year any unexpended funds remaining up to a maximum of 30% of the contribution payable. Any unexpended funds in excess of 30% of the contribution payable represents an overpayment and is payable to Canada.

These carry forward proportions are designed to:

  • prioritize full implementation of Yukon’s Universal Program and provide the time to ensure it is created with the best interest of Yukon families
  • Yukon University and other post-secondary institutions: continue engaging and researching training needs to develop a plan that will increase the percentage of ECEs meeting Yukon’s certification requirements by 60% by fiscal year 2025 to 2026
  • enhanced data and analytics capacity: undertake technical research to determine a program that will work for Yukon’s needs
Table 15. Financial summary table for fiscal year 2021 to 2022 and fiscal year 2022 to 2023
Priority area Indicator Fiscal year
2021 to 2022 ($)
Fiscal year
2022 to 2023 ($)
Affordability Fee reductions for parents 1,673,308 2,593,339
Quality Operational funding 1,200,000 1,400,000
Quality Post-secondary institutions 500,000 500,000
Quality Quality frameworks, standards, and tools 200,000 200,000
Quality Cultural Enhancement Fund 400,000 400,000
Accessibility Funding for FN, minority language and non-profit centres 500,000 500,000
Inclusivity Supported Child Care Worker Program 500,000 1,000,000
Inclusivity Plan for vulnerable children N/A 100,000
Administration Enhanced data and analytics capacity 515,000 515,000
Administration Audit 35,000 35,000
Costs ELCC Agreement funding 5,523,308 7,243,339
Costs Carry forward TBD TBD
Costs Total federal funding available 5,523,308 7,243,339

Table 16: Summary Table: Targeted Canada-wide ELCC improvements for fiscal year 2021 to 2022 and fiscal year 2022 to 2023

This table was separated for accessibility reasons.

Table 16 a): Summary Table: Targeted Canada-wide ELCC improvements for fiscal year 2021 to 2022 and fiscal year 2022 to 2023 - Universal reduction of parent fees
Indicator Fiscal year
2021 to 2022
target
Fiscal year
2021 to 2022
investment1
Fiscal year
2022 to 2023
target
Fiscal year
2022 to 2023
investment2
Cumulative targets for fiscal year
2021 to 2022
to fiscal year
2022 to 2023
Total investment for fiscal year
2021 to 2022
to fiscal year
2022 to 20233
Number of subsidized spaces (Federal investment) 195 $1,673,308 305 $2,593,339 305 $4,266,647
Average parent fees (average of all full-time spaces ages 0 to 5) Less than $10/day $1,673,308 Less than $10/day $2,593,339 Less than $10/day $4,266,647
  • 1 Cells in this column where split for accessibility reasons. Fiscal year 2021 to 2022 investment of $1,673,308 will be allocated to both indicators.
  • 2 Cells in this column where split for accessibility reasons. Fiscal year 2022 to 2023 investment of $2,593,339 will be allocated to both indicators.
  • 3 Cells in this column where split for accessibility reasons. Total investment for fiscal year 2021 to 2022 to fiscal year 2022 to 2023 of $4,266,647 will be allocated to both indicators.

Table 16 b): Summary Table: Targeted Canada-wide ELCC improvements for fiscal year 2021 to 2022 and fiscal year 2022 to 2023 - Improved access to licensed child care spaces
Indicators Fiscal year
2021 to 2022
target
Fiscal year
2021 to 2022
investment
Fiscal year
2022 to 2023
target
Fiscal year
2022 to 2023
investment
Cumulative targets for fiscal year
2021 to 2022
to fiscal year
2022 to 2023
Total investment for fiscal year
2021 to 2022
to fiscal year
2022 to 2023
Funding for FN, minority language and non-profit centres 25 new spaces created $500,000 25 new spaces created $500,000 50 new spaces created $1,000,000

Table 16 c): Summary Table: Targeted Canada-wide ELCC improvements for fiscal year 2021 to 2022 and fiscal year 2022 to 2023 - Focus on quality
Indicators Fiscal year
2021 to 2022
target
Fiscal year
2021 to 2022
investment
Fiscal year
2022 to 2023
target
Fiscal year
2022 to 2023
investment
Cumulative targets for fiscal year
2021 to 2022
to fiscal year
2022 to 2023
Total investment for fiscal year
2021 to 2022
to fiscal year
2022 to 2023
Support for early childhood educators At least 300 educators supported 1,100,000 At least 325 educators 1,400,000 At least 325 educators supported 2,500,000
Post-secondary institutions At least 20 additional students enrolled in early childhood education courses 500,000 At least 20 additional students enrolled in early childhood education courses 500,000 At least 40 additional students enrolled in early childhood education courses $1,000,000
Cultural Enhancement Fund At least 250 children benefit from cultural programming 400,000 At least 250 children benefit from cultural programming 400,000 At least 250 children benefit from cultural programming 800,000
Quality frameworks Increased capacity in at least 5 centres to develop and implement evidence-based quality frameworks 200,000 Increased capacity in at least 15 centres to develop and implement evidence-based quality frameworks 200,000 Increased capacity in at least 20 centres to develop and implement evidence-based quality frameworks 400,000

Table 16 d): Summary Table: Targeted Canada-wide ELCC improvements for fiscal year 2021 to 2022 and fiscal year 2022 to 2023 - Inclusivity
Indicators Fiscal year
2021 to 2022
target
Fiscal year
2021 to 2022
investment
Fiscal year
2022 to 2023
target
Fiscal year
2022 to 2023
investment
Cumulative targets for fiscal year
2021 to 2022
to fiscal year
2022 to 2023
Total investment for fiscal year
2021 to 2022
to fiscal year
2022 to 2023
Support francophone children Yukoners Federal funds support children (TBD in fiscal year 2021 to 2022) TBD TBD TBD TBD TBD
Supported Child Care Worker Program Federal funds support at least 8 children with additional needs $500,000

Federal funds support at least 16 children with additional needs

Program review complete, program changes devolved and implemented

$1,000,000 16 children with additional needs are supported $1,500,000
Plan for vulnerable children N/A N/A Develop and fund a plan to ensure that vulnerable children have equitable access to regulated child care spaces $100,000 Develop and fund a plan to ensure that vulnerable children have equitable access to regulated child care spaces $100,000

Table 16 e): Summary Table: Targeted Canada-wide ELCC improvements for fiscal year 2021 to 2022 and fiscal year 2022 to 2023 - Reporting and administrative funding
Indicators Fiscal year
2021 to 2022
target
Fiscal year
2021 to 2022
investment
Fiscal year
2022 to 2023
target
Fiscal year
2022 to 2023
investment
Cumulative targets for fiscal year
2021 to 2022
to fiscal year
2022 to 2023
Total investment for fiscal year
2021 to 2022
to fiscal year
2022 to 2023
Enhanced data and analytics capacity and annual census Enhanced data and analytics capacity to support data modelling, analysis, reporting requirements and an annual census $515,000 Enhanced data and analytics capacity to support data modelling, analysis, reporting requirements and an annual census $515,000 Enhanced data and analytics capacity to support data modelling, analysis, reporting requirements and an annual census $1,030,000
Reporting Audit $35,000 Audit $35,000 Annual audit $70,000
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