Universal Early Childhood Education is a Game Changer

It's the smartest investment Canada can make.

High quality early childhood education provides crucial developmental benefits giving ALL children the opportunity to thrive throughout their lives.

Not only does ECE benefit children but Canadian society and the economy as well. Over the last 20 years since the Honourable Margaret McCain and Dr. Fraser Mustard released the first Early Years Study in 1999, Early Years Studies 1, 2, and 3 have influenced far-reaching government action including:

  • Enhanced parental leave, now up to 20 months
  • Full day kindergarten for 4 year olds in Ontario, the Northwest Territories, and Nova Scotia
  • Full day kindergarten for 5 year olds in British Columbia and Newfoundland
  • 40% of 4 year olds receiving ECE through public education
  • Triple the public funding for ECE across Canada

High Quality Early Childhood Education is Not Babysitting or Daycare

It is play with purpose.

ECE is play-based learning in a nurturing environment, guided by experienced educators. It has a profound impact during the preschool years when children are developing language, social, literacy, numeracy and problem solving skills, as well as self-regulation and confidence. These crucial skills set them on a pathway for success that impacts their entire lives.

Universal Early Childhood Education is A Good Investment

Every $1 invested in early childhood education yields $6 in economic benefits.

The Economic Benefits of ECE:

  • It prepares children for the 21st century workplace
  • It gets parents out of poverty and back to work
  • It stimulates the economy and addresses workforce shortages
  • It helps reduce gender and income inequality for women
  • It promotes diversity
  • It increases high school graduation rates
  • It reduces the need for special education

It's Time to Invest in Canada’s Children

ECE is a Double Dividend that simultaneously supports children’s development, as well as parents’ workforce participation.

Children who participate in high quality ECE do better in school then go on to make their own economic and social contributions. Early Years Study 4 calls on governments to offer quality early childhood education to ALL preschool-aged children across the country. The return on this investment not only outweighs the cost, it is crucial to children’s development, the economy, and the future of Canadian society.