Child Care Information for Parents
York Region’s Early Years Program Finder allows parents and caregivers to search for licensed child care centres, family drop-in programs and EarlyON Child and Family Centres in York Region.
Licensed Child Care Options
There are many licensed child care options available to families, in York Region. Licensed centre-based and home-based child care is available for children with special needs. Visit York Region’s Special Needs Services for more information.
Child Care Fee Subsidy may be available for eligible families with children in licensed child care.
Full-Day Child Care Centres
Child care centres provide full-day child care, usually for 12 months of the year. Some centres also offer part-time care, nursery school programs, temporary care services, as well as school-age or camp programs. These centres must be licensed, whether they are operated by a private corporation or a non-profit, incorporated board of directors.
Parents seeking care for infants and toddlers in a child care centre should be prepared to pay more than they pay for a preschool child because additional staff is required to care for young children.
Home-Based Child Care
Individual home caregivers are not licensed by the Ministry of Education, but are contracted by home child care agencies that are licensed by the Ministry.
Home child care agencies recruit, screen, approve and supervise caregivers who provide child care in their own homes for children from birth to under 13 years of age. It is the agency that is licensed and responsible for ensuring each home meets Child Care and Early Years Act standards. The Child Care and Early Years Act governs the operation of child care centres, or nursery school programs, in Ontario. Child care centres, or nursery school programs, that have more than five children under age 10, must obtain a licence from Ontario’s Ministry of Education.
In a licensed home-based agency:
- Homes are visited and monitored regularly by home child care agencies and are subject to spot checks. Homes are government-regulated and meet specific standards
- Caregivers must meet a set of standards including police checks
- The number and ages of children in care is regulated
- The hours of care are flexible
- Siblings can be placed together
- There are smaller groups of children cared for per home, with a a maximum of six children per home
- Financial support may be available to families who qualify
- Tax receipts are provided
Nursery School Programs
Nursery schools are licensed, part-day programs for more than five children between the ages of 2 and a half and five years of age. They usually only run during the school year from September to June.
School-age programs are licensed to provide before and/or after school care for more than five children. Some programs also offer lunch supervision, as well as care on professional development days and school holidays.
Approved Recreation Programs for School-age Children
HIGH FIVE®-approved recreation programs provide before and/or after school care and summer programs for school-age children. Care may also be provided during March/Christmas break and school board closures.
Selecting Quality Child Care
For information on selecting quality child care, read our resource packages which can help you identify your family’s needs and select a quality child care program that is right for you and your child. The packages include information about child care options, child care needs, a child care checklist and how to help your child adjust to child care.
- Selecting Quality Child Care in a Centre-Based Program
- Selecting Quality Child Care in a Home-Based Program
- Child Care Resources
- Child Care Fee Subsidy calculator
- Child Care Fee Subsidy online application form
- EarlyYears Program Finder