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From vision to action: Early childhood education and care in 2020

Childcare Resource and Research Unit BRIEFing NOTES banner
Martha Friendly and Susan Prentice
November 2008

This BRIEFing NOTE presents a vision for what an universal early childhood education and care system in Canada might look like from the program to the policy level. It explores the potential for Canada to move from a patchwork of disjointed programs - many of them of mediocre quality -to a comprehensive high quality system and suggests changes that would put such a system in place.

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Why Canada can’t work without good child care: How early childhood education and care supports the economy

Martha Friendly
September 2008

Many economists argue that government spending on people should not be contracting when the economy needs stimulation . Failing to invest in people - especially through investments like good quality early childhood education and child care - is bad economics. The evidence shows that universal community-based systems of high quality early childhood education and care (ECEC) are part of the backbone of strong economies: ECEC has short-term, medium-term and long-term economic and social impacts on children, their parents, the labourforce, local economies and the larger economy.

Early learning and child care: How does Canada measure up?

Martha Friendly
October 2006

International comparisons using data from Starting Strong II (Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, 2006)

This BRIEFing NOTE situates early learning and child care in Canada in the international context using the work of the OECD's Thematic Review of Early Childhood Education and Care. It first presents an overview of the review's eight year project. Second, it examines the review's final recommendations in Starting Strong II. Third, it presents data from Starting Strong II to situate Canada internationally.

Canada-wide spending on early childhood education and care 2005/2006

Childcare Resource and Research Unit
September 2006

This factsheet includes: Total public spending for ECEC, Total public spending for ECEC as a percent of GDP and Public spending on regulated child care and kindergarten by province/territory in the 2005/2006 fiscal year.

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The state of the national child care program and provincial/territorial contexts, March 2006

Martha Friendly and Carolyn Ferns
March 2006

This BRIEFing NOTE provides an update of the current state of the national child care program in Canada. It features a short introduction to recent developments in ELCC, from the 2004 election campaign to March 2006. It includes a table summarizing selected features of provincial/territorial contexts, including:

It was twenty years ago today... March 8, 1986

Martha Friendly
March 2006

International Women's Day 2006 is the twentieth anniversary of the Report of the federal government's first and only Task Force on Child Care. The key recommendation of the "Katie Cooke Task Force" was a universal system of child care - co-funded by federal and provincial governments. It would have affordable parent fees, would be designed and managed by the provinces under national standards and would be built through a gradual increase in the supply of regulated child care until the year 2001 when it would serve all children and families.

Quality targets in services for young children: Summary

Summarized by Martha Friendly
November 2004

This BRIEFing NOTE summarizes a paper developed by the European Commission Network on Childcare and Other Measures to Reconcile the Employment and Family Responsibilities of Men and Women (Childcare Network) (1996).

OECD Thematic Review of Canadian Early Childhood Education and Care: Highlights from the recommendations

BRIEFing NOTE prepared by the CRRU
October 2004

This BRIEFing NOTE summarizes the recommendations provided in the OECD Thematic Review of ECEC: Canada Country Note.

Canada was the seventeenth country to be visited as part of the OECD (Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development) Thematic Review of ECEC. Prior to the visit, a Background Report on ECEC policy in Canada was prepared by Gillian Doherty, Martha Friendly and Jane Beach.

Is child care a good public investment?

Childcare Resource and Research Unit
August 2004


This economic study concludes that for every dollar invested in high quality child care, there is a two dollar benefit to children, parents and society. The study calculates the costs and benefits of providing publicly funded early childhood care and education for all children 2-5 years of age-those whose mothers are in the paid workforce, as well as those whose mothers are not.

This traditional economic cost-benefit analysis concludes that:

Is child care a good public investment?

Childcare Resource and Research Unit
2003, EN & FR

This BRIEFing NOTE summarizes The benefits and costs of good child care: The economic rationale for public investment in young children by Gordon Cleveland and Michael Krashinsky, Economics, Division of Management, University of Toronto at Scarborough.

Summary originally released 1998. Reprinted November 2003.


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