Ontario Delivers 2,900 Additional Affordable Child Care Spaces in Ottawa

Investment will help make child care more accessible for families across the region

Photo: Stephen Lecce, Minister of Education

NEPEAN — The Ontario government is expanding licensed child care spaces in the City of Ottawa by investing more than $178 million in 2023 to support the implementation of the Canada-wide Early Learning and Child Care (CWELCC) system. This support delivers a significant reduction of child care fees for Ottawa families by 50 per cent on average and is helping to save families an annual average of $6,000 to $10,000 per child.

An additional 2,900 licensed child care spaces will be created in Ottawa by 2026. These new spaces for children aged zero to five will represent a 9.4 per cent increase of child care spaces available in the community – increasing access to more families across the region.

“We are delivering savings directly to families while increasing access to child care spaces for families across Ottawa,” said Stephen Lecce, Minister of Education. “Our government believes that child care should not be the cost of a mortgage payment, which is why we took action to finally make child care affordable. In addition to cutting child care fees by 50 per cent, we are proud to deliver additional spaces so that more Ottawa families benefit and ultimately save their hard earned money.”

These new spaces in Ottawa are on top of the 29,601 spaces enrolled in the CWELCC system last year.

“We know that creating new child care spaces is critical to ensuring our Canada-wide early learning and child care plan is a success,” said Karina Gould, Minister of Families, Children and Social Development. “This is an important step for families in Ottawa who rely on child care close to home and work. By working with the Government of Ontario, high-quality, affordable and inclusive child care is becoming a reality in the province.”

Ontario remains committed to the success of the Canada-wide Early Learning and Child Care system and will continue to work with municipalities and the sector to ensure affordable child care is available in communities where it is needed most.

Quick Facts

  • As of December 31, 2022, 92 per cent of Ontario’s licensed child care sites have opted in to the CWELCC system, meaning at these facilities across the province, families with children under the age of six are already seeing fee reductions of up to 50 per cent compared to 2020 levels.
  • The Ontario government has streamlined the application process for new child care operators when they apply for a licence. They will learn about their eligibility for CWELCC child care funding before investing heavily in becoming licensed. The applicants will also have to submit key municipal approvals, including zoning and permitted use, together with their application. This will significantly reduce the time it takes the applicant to acquire a licence.
  • Currently, there are more than 5,500 licensed child care centres, 145 licensed home child care agencies, and around 473,000 licensed spaces in Ontario.
  • Since 2018, the Ontario government has invested over $2.2 billion in capital projects within the education sector, including nearly 6,500 new, licensed child care spaces within schools. For 2022-23, the Ontario government has invested more than $57 million to create 1,502 school-based licensed child care spaces for infants, toddlers, and preschoolers.
  • In March 2022, Ontario secured a five-year, $10.2 billion agreement with the federal government which will lower fees for families to an average of $10 a day by September 2025. In December 2022, as part of that agreement, Ontario announced a targeted plan to create thousands of new licensed child care spaces, with a focus on increasing access to Ontario families.


“The Government of Canada is making life more affordable for families while giving children the best start in life. These new child care spaces will increase access to affordable child care across Ottawa, saving families thousands per year.”

– Mona Fortier
President of the Treasury Board of Canada and MP for Ottawa-Vanier


“Ottawa is growing in both population and opportunity. Providing accessible and affordable childcare to more families across our city is a welcome opportunity for many families. The Provincial government’s investment will help Ottawa increase access to and support more families in Ottawa. This is a great investment for the future of our city.”

– Mark Sutcliffe
Mayor, City of Ottawa


“Our government is continuing to support families with the addition of new child care spaces in our community. Today’s announcement, along with the reduction of child care fees is another positive step for families.”

– Lisa MacLeod
MPP for Nepean


“I am proud Ontario’s government is taking real steps to support parents and families with affordable, reliable child care. Thousands more Ontario families have access to the child care they need, excited to say we’re getting it done for parents across Ottawa, and all of Ontario.”

– Goldie Ghamari
MPP for Carleton


SOURCE Province of Ontario

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