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 fee subsidy to eligible families enrolled at your centre. If you are a home child care 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.

Opening a child care centre

Apply for a Purchase of Service

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 an application is submitted 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 that outlines the parent policies and operating information as required. Operating information must also identify days and hours of operations and parent 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 (non-profit only).
  9. Proof of non-profit incorporation or business license.

All approved operators will receive a POS legal agreement which provides information for about the, requirements and expectations of the services and funding opportunities and related details.

The decision to enter into a POS agreement is at the discretion of the Children's Services Program Manager and is dependent on available funding and local need. Prior to entering into an agreement, the Program Manager will schedule a site visit to meet the operator and view the site.

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

 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.

Renew a Purchase of Service

To increase fees, Child Care Agencies must submit a Purchase of Service Renewal package including:

  1. Copy of Insurance. Minimum of $5 million in liability insurance is required.
  2. Current Health Inspection.
  3. Completed Budget Package. Including financial projections, salary information.
  4. Parent Handbook. Outlining the parent policies and operating information as required. Operating information must also identify days and hours of operations and vacation policies.
  5. Current Fee Schedule. An approved fee schedule with a complete listing of the cost of care for all service offerings.
  6. Complete list of board of directors or owner details.

Once all documentation is submitted, the Children's Services Early Years Funding Coordinator will review the package and provide a written response within 30 days.

Ongoing Funding Opportunities

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:

  • Close the wage gap between RECE wages in the education sector and licensed child care sectors
  • Provide an additional $2 per hour wage increase and 17.5% benefits to eligible positions
  • Help retain Registered Early Childhood Educators (RECEs)
  • Support access to stable, high-quality child care programs for children in Ontario
  • Support greater employment and income security
 Eligibility
 All licensed child care agency can apply for Wage Enhancement. To be eligible for Wage Enhancement staff must:
  • Be employed in a licensed child care centre or agency;
  • Have a wage below the wage cap (identified below) excluding prior year’s wage enhancement; and
  • Be working as a child care supervisor, RECE, home child care visitor, or otherwise counted toward adult to child ratios under the Child Care and Early Years Act, 2014

Wage Cap for 2021:

  • Licensed child care settings: $28.31/hour
  • Licensed home child care: $283.10/day 

Full Wage Enhancement:

  • Licensed child care settings: $2/hour
  • Licensed home child care: $20/day

Partial Wage Enhancement:

  • Licensed child care settings: the partial wage enhancement will increase the wage of the qualifying position to the wage cap below without exceeding the cap
    • For example, if an RECE position has a base wage rate, excluding the previous year’s wage enhancement, of $26.90 per hour, the position would be eligible for wage enhancement of $1.41 per hour
  • Licensed home child care: $10/day
 New Applications

Application Form

All licensed child care agencies can apply for Wage Enhancement. New agencies wanting to apply for funding can apply online. The application closes February 28th. Agencies applying will be required to submit the following completed documents:

  • Certificate of Insurance
  • Incorporation Papers or Business License
  • Current License to operate a child care centre

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

 Guidelines

Centre & Home Based Wage Enhancement Business Guidelines

 Inquires

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.

General Operating Grant

Is intended to support the costs of operating licensed child care programs to reduce wait times and fees for services, stabilize service levels and increase access to high-quality affordable child care services by supporting 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. 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. Five Counties helps children with physical, communication and developmental problems. Five Counties 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

Is intended to strengthen the early years sector by building capacity and assisting with play-based materials, repairs and maintenance, and other sector priorities to support the provision of high-quality child care programs for children ages 0 to 12. 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.

Early Learning and Child Care Funding

Is intended to support children aged 0-12 years old through additional fee subsidies, increased access and/or broadly reducing licensed child care fees and increasing affordability.

Child care operators with a POS and planning to expand their services as identified in the City’s Child Care Expansion Plan may apply for funding in the calendar year that expanded spaces are expected to open. Approval is subject to the submission of a completed application, eligibility, availability of funding and alignment with the Early Years and Child Care Service Plan 2019-2024.