For the first time in several years, Legacy Childcare in Slave Lake doesn’t have a wait list. There are spaces available.
For the last three or four years, Legacy Childcare has had a wait list of 100 or more children, says Abigail Rayner, Legacy Childcare executive director. Prior to that, the wait list was shorter. Then the daycare got a provincial grant to be a $25-a-day daycare, but now this funding is ending. Starting in April, the rate increases.
However, as the only licensed daycare in Slave Lake, parents may be eligible for an Alberta child care subsidy, says Rayner. The provincial government recently increased the eligible income. Families with incomes under $75,000 are eligible for a partial subsidy. Families under $50,000 are eligible for the full subsidy.
The Alberta government’s website has a calculator to estimate the amount of subsidy a family would be eligible for.
Other factors also impacted the daycare now having space available. Another factor is that it recently increased the height of dividing walls.
Under the current COVID-19 restrictions, each room at a daycare is limited to 30 people including staff, says Rayner. These have been in place since June 2020. For a space to be a room, all walls have to be at least six feet high. The old dividing walls were lower than this. The new ones are taller.
Legacy Childcare is licensed for 184 children aged zero to 12 years old.
Last spring it had to close for a few months due to COVID restrictions.
It has been open since June 15, 2020 with a maximum of 69 children. Now it can have 99.
As of March 9, it had 27 spaces available. Some in each age group.