Operating a Child Care Centre

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Starting and Operating a Child Care Centre

If you are thinking of opening a new licensed child care program for children, or purchasing an existing program, you will need to contact: 

Service Contract Application

Once your program has been licensed, you may be interested in applying for a Purchase of Service Agreement (POS) with the City of Peterborough to provide child care to families receiving child care subsidy. If you are a home provider interested in becoming part of the licensed home child care system, please contact one of the licensed home child care agencies that serve the City and County of Peterborough.

Once an application is made for a POS, the following documentation is required:

  1. Copy of Insurance. Minimum of $5 million in liability insurance is required.
  2. Proof of License to Operate. Indicating how many children the program is licensed for, how many playrooms are operating and the ages of the children they will care for. Authorized Recreation programs must submit proof of authorization.
  3. Current Fire Inspection. Must be completed prior to licensing approval.
  4. Current Health Inspection. Must be completed prior to licensing approval and annually thereafter.
  5. Completed Budget Package. Including financial projections, salary information.
  6. Parent Handbook. Outlining the parent policies and operating information as required. Operating information must also identify days and hours of operations and vacation policies.
  7. Current Fee Schedule. An approved fee schedule for the first year of operation with a complete listing of the cost of care for all service offerings.
  8. Complete list of board of directors.
  9. Proof of non-profit incorporation.

All approved operators will receive an Operating Criteria Handbook which provides information for service providers about the roles and responsibilities of Children's Services as well as the requirements and expectations of the service.

For the construction of a new building, check out the Ministry's Planning and Design Guidelines for Child Care Centres.
 Service Contract Renewal

The City of Peterborough purchases Child Care services on behalf of subsidy eligible families from licensed Child Care Agencies in the City and County of Peterborough. Child Care agencies with an established Agreement are eligible to have their daily fees increased once a calendar year.

A service agreement for Child Care Subsidy may be available to agencies that meet the following criteria:

  • Be a non-profit child care agency
  • Have a current license issued by the Ministry of Education
  • Complete and submit the required Application for Purchase of Service/Budget Package
  • Have been in operation for a minimum of one year
  • Provide services to residents of the City or County of Peterborough

Once the application and documentation are submitted, the Children's Services Early Years Funding Coordinator will review the package and schedule a site visit to meet the operator and view the site. The decision to enter into an agreement is at the discretion of the Children's Services Program Manager and is dependent on available funding and local need.

At this time there is a temporary suspension on all new Purchase of Service Agreements with licensed child care programs due to funding pressures

Ongoing Funding Oportunities

To be eligible for funding organizations need to have a license and a purchase of service agreement with the municipality.

Wage Enhancement Grant

The purpose of Wage Enhancement is to:

  • Provide an additional $2 per hour wage increase and 17.5% benefits to eligible positions
  • Benefit staff working in licensed child care
  • Help retain Registered Early Childhood Educators (RECEs)
  • Support access to stable, high-quality child care programs for children in Ontario

Any licensed child care operator can apply for Wage Enhancement and operators are required to submit the following completed documents:

  • Operating Information Form
  • Certificate of Insurance
  • Incorporation Papers or Business License
  • Current License to operate a child care centre
  • Completed Electronic Funds Transfer form along with a void cheque 

All required documentation must be submitted and approved before the City will make the first payment to the operator.

Inquiries regarding the misuse of Wage Enhancement funding for a child care site should be documented and submitted.

All inquiries will receive a response in writing within 15 business days. Public inquiries related to wage enhancement are processed through the City of Peterborough in accordance with Provincial guidelines.

Fee Stabilization Grant

The purpose of Fee Stabilization support funding is to increase staff wages and benefits to stabilize licensed child care fees in Ontario.

General Operating Grant

The purpose of the General Operating Grant is to support the availability of licensed child care for all parents by supporting agencies general operating costs such as:

  • Staff wages and benefits
  • Lease/mortgage costs
  • Administration costs
  • Resources and supplies

Licensed Home Child Care Base Funding

The purpose of licensed home child care base funding (LHCCBF) is to support the provision of stable, predictable funding to assist agencies with forecasting, planning, and actively recruiting more providers.
 Enhanced Funding for Children with Special Needs
Special Needs Resourcing funding (SNR) may be available to hire an additional staff to support the inclusion of children with special needs in licensed child care and licensed home child care at no additional cost to parents / guardians.SNR is available for children living in the City and County of Peterborough through Five Counties Children’s Centre (5CCC). 5CCC helps children with physical, communication and developmental problems. 5CCC works with children and adolescents, along with their families and the community, to strengthen their abilities and promote their participation as active members of the community.
Small Water Works Funding
Small Water Works (SWW) funding supports costs related to small water systems for licensed child care centres in rural communities. Child care centres that have historically received SWW funding will receive an allocation.

One Time Funding Opportunities

To be eligible for funding organizations need to have a license and a purchase of service agreement with the municipality.

Special Purpose Funding

The purpose of Special Purpose funding is to support to the unique costs of providing child care services. For example, indigenous, rural/remote, repairs & maintenance and play-based materials. Agencies with an agreement will receive a notice when this funding becomes available.

Capital Funding

The capital allocation is provided to maintain and improve child care infrastructure across communities. This allocation will support capital retrofits to allow operators to re-purpose existing community-based centres to serve younger age groups.

Child Care Expansion

The purpose of Expansion Plan Funding is to increase access to licensed child care for children aged 0-4 years. The priorities for this funding is to:

  • Support additional fee subsidies
  • Increase access
  • Increase affordability