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Courtenay schools to add child-care space with provincial funding

Arden, Glacier View elementaries to get 75 new child-care spaces — 24 for infants and toddlers, 32 for children aged 3-5 and 94 for school-age care.

Courtenay schools are the latest in line for provincially funded child care, with 150 new child-care spaces in the works at a pair of sites in the Comox Valley School District.

Arden and Glacier View elementaries will each receive 75 new child-care spaces, with 24 spaces for infants and toddlers, 32 for children aged three to five and 94 for school-age care.

“These two new child-care facilities represent a significant step forward in providing accessible, affordable and high-quality early-learning environments for families in the Comox Valley,” said Comox Valley School Board chair Michelle Waite. “The centres at Arden and Glacier View will help parents with supporting their families and pursuing their professional and educational goals, with the confidence that their children are receiving excellent care and education.”

The school district has received close $8 million in provincial funding through the ChildCareBC New Spaces Fund for the new child-care areas.

It is among school districts around the province that have taken advantage of the fund to create or expand access to licensed child care in schools.

The acting executive director of BGC (formerly Boys & Girls Clubs of Canada) Central Vancouver Island — the Island’s largest child-care provider — applauded the announcement of the new centres.

“Recognizing the growing need for affordable and readily available child care, we are excited to be adding the new Arden and Glacier clubs, bringing our total up to 16 club locations and complementing our existing Aspen Park and Brooklyn clubs in the beautiful Comox Valley,” said Corey Sugiyama.

Courtenay-Comox MLA Ronna-Rae Leonard said the new school-based facilities will be “a wonderful resource” for families.

“Having child care at schools reduces the number of transitions students have in a day, which is easier for them and their families,” she said. “These much-needed spaces will go a long way to help relieve some of the stress on working families and greatly support our community.”

ChildCareBC programs have helped fund more than 37,000 new licensed child care spaces in B.C. since 2018.

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