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Surrey council endorses plan to raise city’s child care spaces to national average

‘We’ve got a long ways to fill the gap,’ Coun. Linda Annis says
(Imagination Station screengrab)

Surrey city staff endorsed a Surrey Community Child Care Action Plan that aims over the next 10 years to bridge the gap between the number of childcare spaces in this city with the national average.

Surrey currently has 11,301 child care spaces, making for 14.9 spaces per 100 children whereas the national average is 27.2 spaces per 100 children

“It looks like we’re not doing as well as we’d like to be doing around child care spaces in Surrey,” Coun. Linda Annis said.

“We’ve got a long ways to fill the gap. I think some 20,000 spaces are needed to bring us up to the national average.”

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Annis asked if the city could work with the school board toward using some schools for after preschool and after school care and “have daycares there.”

She was told at Monday night’s council meeting city staff will “engage in dialogue” with the school board “to look for opportunities to share both ways, whether that’s recreation centres or school systems.”

According to a corporate report before council since July 2018 the provincial government has funded 1,941 new licensed spaces in Surrey and to date the City of Surrey has received $1,425,172 to develop 56 new licensed childcare spaces.

The report states that Parks, Recreation & Culture staff are working to create 228 new spaces over the next two years, in partnership with Surrey’s non-profit organizations, contingent on securing funds from the provincial government.

About the Author: Tom Zytaruk

I write unvarnished opinion columns and unbiased news reports for the Surrey Now-Leader.
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