Durham College prepares for child care boom with new ECE stream

Durham College (DC) is helping Durham Region and Ontario prepare for the $10-a-day child care boom with a new program that allows Early Childhood Educators (ECE) to complete their education without leaving the workforce.

DC is launching a new stream of the Early Childhood Education program (ECE-E) designed for ECE assistants who are working in a child care program and early years environment. All classes, both on campus and online, will be held between the hours of 10 a.m. and 2 p.m., allowing students who work in before- and after-school programs to complete their studies in between their daily shifts.

“We are proud to offer this program, which allows child care professionals to enhance their careers while also helping to bolster the provincial workforce,” explained Joanne Spicer, associate dean, Faculty of Social and Community Services at DC. “With this innovative stream of our popular ECE program, Durham College is providing valuable solutions not only to students, but to the families who count on child care programs in Durham Region and across Ontario.”

Students in the ECE-E program will have the unique option of applying for an Ontario ECE Grant, which will cover tuition fees. The eligibility requirements for the grant are identical to those for the ECE-E program. For more information and to apply, visit the Ontario ECE Grant website.

“This Durham College program is a great opportunity for those working in child care and early learning programs to earn their diploma and work towards becoming a Registered Early Childhood Educator,” said Lisa McIntosh, director of children’s services for Durham Region. “The child care system is growing and needs a growing skilled workforce, which is why professional development in this field is so important.”

With this new stream of the ECE program, DC is leading the way in building workforce capacity in the critically important child care space.