Child Care Subsidy
Questions about subsidy and child care benefits in Canada? There are several government funding options that could help you with the costs of daycare. Here at BrightPath, our team is always available to help with the complexity of government support.
Child Care Subsidy in Ontario
There are a variety of different government-provided funds available to assist families with the cost of child care in Ontario.
1. Ontario Child Care Fee Subsidy
Families can apply for the Ontario child care fee subsidy. The cost of this program is shared by the Ontario government, municipal governments and First Nations communities.
Families can apply if:
- Your child is under 13 years old (or up to 18 years old if your child has special needs and meets other criteria*)
- Your child is enrolled in a licensed child care program
The amount you pay for child care depends on your family's adjusted net income.
To calculate your net income:
- Take your net income amount on line 236 of the Canada Revenue Agency personal income tax form
- Any federal Universal Child Care Benefit (UCCB) payments (the UCCB is not considered in determining a family's child care fee subsidy)
How to Apply
The Ministry of Education provides funding for fee subsidies. To apply for the child care subsidy or to get more information about this program, visit your municipal government website or contact your local:
- Consolidated Municipal Service Managers (CMSMs)/District Social Services Administration Boards (DSSABs)
- Local band office administrator (for First Nations)
2. Ontario Child Benefit
The Ontario Child Benefit (OCB) helps low-to-moderate income families – whether they are working or not – to provide for their children.
Depending on your family income, you may qualify for the OCB, if you:
- Are the primary caregiver of a child under 18
- Are a resident of Ontario
- Have filed and had assessed your previous year's income tax return, and so has your spouse or common-law partner, and
- Have registered your child for the federal Canada Child Tax Benefit
How to Apply
There is no application required for the OCB.
Learn more about the OCB.
3. ON Canada Child Benefit
The ON Canada Child Benefit is a tax-free monthly payment. It helps families pay for the costs of raising children under the age of 18.
Child Care Subsidy in Alberta
We accept subsidies at all our Alberta BrightPath locations. Subsidy rates vary based on the child’s age, family income, the child care program and the number of hours a child attends each month.
Types of child care subsidies include:
- subsidy for children 0 to kindergarten-age (in kindergarten and also attending child care during regular school hours)
- subsidy for children in kindergarten to grade 6 enrolled in a licensed program outside of regular school hours
1. Alberta Child Care Subsidy
You can apply for child care subsidy if:
- You or your spouse or partner, or the child receiving care, are Canadian citizens or permanent residents of Canada
- You or your spouse or partner are an Alberta resident
- You and your spouse or partner:
- Are working, or looking for work
- Are attending school
- Have special needs, or your child has a special need
- Your children are 12 years old or younger and are not yet attending Grade 7
- Your children have a secured spot in a licensed facility-based program with daycare or out-of-school care programming
The amount of subsidy you receive and which program you qualify for will depend on the age of your child, type of child care program and your household income.
You are eligible if:
- Your total family income is less than $180,000 per year for children 0 to kindergarten age (for those children who are in kindergarten and also attending child care during regular school hours).
- You will also benefit from reduced fees through an affordability grant provided directly to child care operators. The combined benefits of affordability grants and subsidies should be considered when estimating your new costs.
- Your total family income is less than $90,000 per year for children in kindergarten to Grade 6 enrolled in a licensed program outside of regular school hours.
How to Apply
- Read the eligibility requirements and make sure you understand what happens after you apply.
- Complete the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) Consent Applicant Declaration and Acknowledgement form, if you haven't completed it in the past.
- Complete the Child Care Subsidy application online using your MyAlberta Digital ID (MADI) account.
- Provide additional information or documents as requested during the assessment process.
2. Alberta Canada-Wide Early Learning and Child Care Agreement
Families who make less than $180,000 will be eligible for an additional subsidy to further reduce their child care costs.
Parents will see reduced fees starting in early 2022, and can expect to pay an average of:
- $10 per day if they earn up to $119,999
- $11 to $17 per day if they earn between $120,000 and $179,999
- $22.19 per day if they earn $180,000 and above
The amount you will save will vary depending on your child care provider's fees. However, grant-receiving providers must commit to helping Alberta ensure families reach an average of $10 per day by the end of 5 years.
Fees will be reduced by increasing family income thresholds for Child Care Subsidy eligibility criteria so more parents benefit:
- Full subsidy if gross household income is up to $119,999
- Partial subsidy if gross household income is from $120,000 to $179,999
- Preschool (part-time) flat rate of $125 per month for families earning up to $180,000
In January, you may find your funding looks a bit different because of the combination of grants and subsidy, but you will still be paying less overall for your licensed child care. The combined benefits of affordability grants and subsidies should be considered when estimating your new costs.
Child Care Subsidy in British Columbia
We accept subsidies at all our British Columbia BrightPath locations.
1. Affordable Child Care Act
- A parent or guardian must be:
- A resident of B.C. (you must have a current B.C. address)
- A Canadian citizen, a permanent resident of Canada, a Convention refugee or a person in need of protection
- Families must provide one of the following reasons for requiring child care:
- Working or self-employed
- Attending school
- Participating in an employment program
- Looking for work (only one parent or guardian)
- Living with a medical condition that interferes with your ability to care for your child
- Your child is attending licensed preschool
- You have been referred by a Ministry of Children and Family Development or Delegated Aboriginal Agency social worker.
- Generally speaking, families that earn up to $111,000 may qualify for funding. Families that earn more than $111,000, but have considerable deductions for family size or children who have special needs, can also apply.
- Find out more about sharing your income information with the Ministry of Children and Family Development
- A formula is used to calculate whether a family qualifies for a funding amount based on their annual income and deductions, or adjustments. This step is called income testing.
- Families may be exempt from income testing if they are caring for someone else’s child under a Ministry of Children and Family Development placement.
- Apply for funding before the end of the month in which you need child care. For example, if you would like to receive funding for child care starting September 1, you need to apply by September 30.
- Most types of child care are eligible. Child care by a family member who lives with you, licensed occasional care and recreational care are not eligible for funding.
How to Apply
Families need to renew their applications every year.
2. British Columbia Canada-Wide Early Learning and Child Care Agreement
BC and Canada agree on the goal of $10 per day child care and will work together towards achieving an average parent fee of $10 per day for all regulated child care spaces for children age 0 to 5 by the end of the 5-year agreement. By December 2022, British Columbia will create an immediate impact for families by increasing $10 per day spaces to 12,500, and reducing average fees for BC parents by 50%, for a combined impact of $21 per day.