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School district to build three new child care centres

Rachael Weber

School District 57 is building three new 62-space child care centres. Each centre will provide spaces for 12 children under 36 months of age, 25 children from 30 months to school age, and 25 school-aged children.

The first centre will be located at 32 Heather Crescent in Mackenzie, on the site of the former Mackenzie Elementary School, and has a planned completion date of summer 2025. The second centre will be located at 4543 West Austin Road in Prince George, on the site of the former Austin Road Elementary School, and has a planned completion date of summer 2026. The third site will be located at 2955 Third Avenue in Prince George, next to the former Central Fort George Elementary School, and has a planned completion date of summer 2027.

Funding support totaling $13.4 million was provided from the federal and provincial governments through the ChildCareBC New Spaces Fund to make these projects come to fruition. Federal funding is provided under the Canada-British Columbia Canada-wide Early Learning and Child Care Agreement – 2021-2026.

“The board of education is thrilled at the announcement of funding for three new child care centers in the district,” said Rachael Weber, board chair, in a news release. “There is a great need for child care in the communities we serve and we are grateful we can continue to enhance and support this valuable service for children and their families.”

Families whose children attend the new childcare centres will benefit from the Child Care Fee Reduction Initiative (CCFRI) savings. Early Childhood Educators, who work with our youngest learners, will also be eligible for a wage enhancement incentive through the ECE-WE Program.

“Funding three new child care centres in Prince George and Mackenzie speaks to our commitment to create child care spaces where they are needed most,” said Grace Lore, Minister of State for Child Care. “We know child care is life-changing for families, which is why we are partnering with the Prince George School District to build access to affordable, quality, inclusive child care as a core service that all families can rely on. These centres will be assets to the community for years to come, benefiting countless families.”


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