Indigenous Early Learning and Child Care

From: Employment and Social Development Canada

The Government of Canada believes that all Canadian children deserve a real and fair chance to succeed, and that high-quality early learning and child care provides a solid foundation for future success.

For Indigenous children and families, culturally appropriate programs that take into account the cultures, languages, traditions, values and customs of First Nations, Inuit and Métis communities can be crucial in creating a foundation for a child’s cultural identity and sense of worth.

Indigenous Early Learning and Child Care Framework

In 2017, the Government and Indigenous partners undertook a comprehensive engagement process on Indigenous early learning and child care. Over 100 engagement activities were conducted across the country by Indigenous organizations and the Government of Canada, reaching over 3,000 participants through town halls, regional and national meetings, and online surveys.

Informed by this engagement, the Government worked with Indigenous partners to co-develop the Indigenous Early Learning and Child Care Framework.

The Indigenous Early Learning and Child Care Framework will be the foundation for ongoing collaborative work to achieve a shared path forward. The Framework is meant as a guide for all actors in the Early Learning and Child Care sphere to work towards achieving the shared vision that all Indigenous children have the opportunity to experience high-quality, culturally strong early learning and child care.

A Multilateral Framework was signed in June 2017 by the Federal, Provincial and Territorial Ministers Responsible for Early Learning and Child Care; and in which governments agreed to work together to address some of the key early learning and child care issues across the country. The Indigenous Early Learning and Child Care Framework and the Multilateral Early Learning and Child Care Framework complement one another.

A shared path forward for Indigenous early learning and child care

The Indigenous Early Learning and Child Care Framework 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, centred on children and grounded in culture.

To work towards achieving this vision, the Government of Canada, is committing up to $1.7 billion over 10 years to strengthen early learning and child care programs and services for Indigenous children and families starting in 2018-19. This is part of the commitment of $7.5 billion over 11 years the Government has made to support and create more high-quality, affordable child care across the country.

Over the next 10 years, up to $1.02 billion will support Early Learning and Child Care for First Nations and will be managed in partnership with First Nations. Up to $111 million will support early learning and child care for Inuit and will be managed in partnership with Inuit. Up to $450 million will support early learning and child care for the Métis Nation and will be managed in partnership with the Métis Nation. Further details on these new investments in Indigenous early learning and child care will be available later this year.

Reconciliation

The Government of Canada is committed to achieving reconciliation with Indigenous peoples.

This Indigenous Early Learning and Child Care Framework and the collaborative work to implement it over time responds to the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada’s Call to Action #12 to develop culturally appropriate early childhood education programs for Indigenous families.

Current federal Indigenous early learning and child care programs

The Government of Canada currently administers three Indigenous early learning and child care programs:

Report a problem or mistake on this page
Please select all that apply:

Thank you for your help!

You will not receive a reply. For enquiries, contact us.

Date modified: