Three Manitoulin schools to receive new child care spaces funding

SUDBURY—The Rainbow District School Board (RDSB) is receiving over $6 million funding for the creation of more childcare spaces at some of its schools, including three on Manitoulin Island.

“The Ministry of Education has announced funding to the RDSB through the ministry’s Stand Alone Care and Family Program, a joint submission that had been made,” stated Norm Blaseg, director of the RDSB this past Monday. “The funding is toward school board early years capital construction; referred to as the early years capital program.”

Mr. Blaseg explained that this MOE funding, “is part of their (ministry) announcement a few years ago for day-care for children up to the age of four, over the next five years.”

“As for us, we (RDSB) are receiving just over $6 million, $6,024,837, and the way it is broken down this is for nine successful capital project requests,” said Mr. Blaseg. “On the Island, funding of $1.3 million is being provided for Assiginack Public School under two separate programs, $327,711 for Central Manitoulin Public School and for Little Current Public School a total of $327,711 as well.”

“The way they (ministry) identified it was looking at family age groupings (before and after day school day care) and the creation of child care spaces,” said Mr. Blaseg.

As for the number of child care spaces this will create at each school Mr. Blaseg said, “at this point no definite numbers of spaces has been determined—so no one’s hands are tied. More work will be done to gauge what community needs are and providing what the community needs are.” He noted under the funding it is hoped that the additional spaces will bring relief for families and daycare for children aged 0-4, and before and after school programs.

Construction for these new spaces will be done this spring or summer, and final plans will be put  in place in the near future, added Mr. Blaseg.