The governments of Canada and Manitoba are investing more than $4 million to reimburse the tuition of early childhood educator students by up to $5,000 per school year to help cover tuition-related costs of recognized programs Terry Duguid, member of Parliament for Winnipeg South, on behalf of federal Minister of Families, Children and Social Development Karina Gould, Manitoba Education and Early Childhood Learning Minister Wayne Ewasko and Manitoba Advanced Education, Skills and Immigration Minister Jon Reyes announced today.
“Reducing barriers for individuals to obtain their certification as an early childhood educator will stabilize and strengthen the early learning and child-care sector workforce, which will further enhance the quality and availability of child-care spaces throughout the province,” said Ewasko. “Early learning and child-care sector staff are dedicated to promoting positive early childhood development outcomes, and our government is proud to announce this initiative to support them in obtaining their certification.”
Tuition reimbursement is available to Manitoba residents who:
- will be attending a part- or full-time recognized early childhood educator program, including the workplace program, in 2022-23;
- completed courses in a recognized early childhood educator program in 2021-22; or
- graduated from a recognized early childhood educator program in 2021-22.
Students must also confirm they will work in Manitoba’s early learning and child-care sector for two years as part of the application process.
“Early childhood educators are at the very heart of the Canada-wide early learning and child-care system,” said Gould. “Today’s announcement with Manitoba is a meaningful step toward growing the number of professional educators in the province, which is critical to expanding access to regulated child care.”
“The early childhood workforce of teachers and staff are the backbone of providing high-quality early learning and childcare,” said Duguid. “Our government is dedicated to supporting Manitoba’s early childhood educators and providing them with the tools and resources they need to succeed. Today’s announcement will help grow the workforce and support those who are considering this important career.”
The ministers noted a dedicated early childhood workforce is needed to provide early learning and child-care services. Funding in this year is being provided for the early childhood educator tuition reimbursement initiative through the Canada-Manitoba Early Learning and Child Care Agreement 2021 to 2025.
“Tuition costs have been identified as a barrier to accessing early childhood educator programs at post-secondary institutions, but this new initiative will make it easier for individuals to enter these programs, receive their certification and enter the workforce,” said Reyes. “Increasing participation in post-secondary education, skills training and employment is a key pillar of our Skills, Talent and Knowledge Strategy, and the creation of this program helps advance our work to ensure students gain the right skills and competencies to thrive.”
The ministers noted support for students in early childhood education programs is only one part of a broader workforce strategy for early learning and child care that will be developed in consultation with stakeholders.
The tuition reimbursement also builds on other recent investments for child-care facilities made to ensure Manitoba families have convenient access to high-quality, flexible and inclusive child care including:
- almost $37 million for operating grants to support wage equity for early learning and child-care staff;
- $6.6 million to help recruit and retain staff by providing a one-time retroactive wage supplement for the lowest-paid child-care assistants and early childhood educators; and
- more than $8 million to fund more than 3,100 new early learning and child-care expansion spaces at 177 facilities across the province.
“Students and recent graduates from Red River College Polytechnic’s early childhood education programs will benefit greatly from this tuition reimbursement program,” said Ruth Lindsey-Armstrong, community services chair, RRC Polytech. “The learners who dedicate themselves to a career in child-focused education and development are compassionate individuals, who enable children and youth to develop confidence and learning potential. I am pleased that new early childhood educators are being supported in their own pursuit of education.”
For more information about the early learning educator tuition reimbursement initiative, visit: https://www.manitoba.ca/education/childcare/students_workforce/ece_tuition_support.html.
For more information about the Canada–Manitoba Canada Early Learning and Child Care Agreement, visit: http://www.canada.ca/child-care.
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