The Ontario government has launched an online public consultation as part of its review of government spending. This is important as it will inform future decisions by the government regarding the effectiveness and efficiency of provincial programs and services, in areas such as children and social services and education.
During the past few years the AECEO has been leading the charge to improve compensation and working conditions for registered early childhood educators and staff through the Professional Pay and Decent Work Campaign. From that work the Ontario Early Childhood Sector Decent Work Charter has been developed as one of the components to mobilize a collective effort to achieve greater recognition and improved compensation and working conditions for those employed in the sector.
Tell us about your experience with Decent Work! We are looking for an ECE that is willing to be involved in a short telephone interview that will be published in our Fall 2018 eceLINK. We want to highlight ECE experiences with Decent Work and Professional Pay.
AECEO welcomes new Interim Coordinator - Alana Powell, RECE
Alana is a proud RECE who has worked in programs directly with children and has been engaged in the child care advocacy movement in Ontario. Alana holds her ECE diploma from George Brown College, an HBA in Political Science from the University of Toronto, and is currently completing an MA in Early Childhood Studies from Ryerson University. Alana’s advocacy work is driven and informed by her experience working as an RECE, where she experienced firsthand the challenges facing the workforce. It is from this perspective that Alana continues to advocate for child care policy that will provide decent work and professional pay to all to RECEs. Alana believes these structural changes are necessary for all RECEs to meaningfully engage in their socially and ethically important practice.
As the professional association for RECEs in Ontario it is our purpose to advocate for respect, recognition and appropriate wages and working conditions for all RECEs. It is in light of this that the AECEO expresses disappointment at the Ministry of Education's decision to remove the For Profit Maximum Threshold.
We know that RECEs are the key to quality in the early years’ sector - qualified and caring educators are essential to children’s experiences in child care settings. RECEs deserve professional pay and good working conditions; these are essential to the ethical and caring practice of RECEs, as noted in the AECEO’s Decent Work Charter. We believe that early childhood education and care is a public good and human right, not a commodity. From this position, the AECEO disagrees with the removal of the For Profit Maximum Threshold. We are concerned with this step towards privatization of the early childhood sector, which suggests the current government is taking a step away from their responsibility to provide quality, affordable, inclusive, and accessible early years and child care programs. The AECEO also firmly believes that the Ministry of Education should continue working with the sector to implement the workforce strategy and wage scale that was developed to address recruitment and retention of RECEs.
Association of Early Childhood Educators Ontario (AECEO)
The Association of Early Childhood Educators Ontario is seeking a dynamic and committed individual for the position of Executive Coordinator.
The AECEO is the professional association for registered early childhood educators (RECEs) in Ontario. The AECEO’s mission is to build and support a strong collective voice for RECEs so they can participate in and influence positive change that benefits children, families, educators and communities. AECEO advocates for respect, recognition and appropriate wages and working conditions for all RECEs. AECEO is a membership based organization with approximately 2,000 current members. Our members are individual RECEs, ECE students, early years staff and organizations/programs from across Ontario.
Position: Executive Coordinator, Association of Early Childhood Educators Ontario
Reports to: AECEO Board of Directors
The Executive Coordinator leads a small, hard-working team in the fulfillment of the AECEO’s mission through initiatives such as the Professional Pay and Decent Work project, Guiding Committee on Truth and Reconciliation, membership and fund development, professional learning, communications, community outreach and support, facilitating effective partnerships and government relations.Read more
Call for Articles for eceLINK: The Peer Reviewed Collection
Issue: Spring 2020
Special issue: Common Worlding in Early Childhood Education Special Issue
Guest Editor: Veronica Pacini-Ketchabaw
Exploring children-climate relations, using creative paradigms, is significant at this time given the growing recognition of global ecological challenges and increasing awareness of the climate-related risks children face (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, 2014; UNICEF, 2007, 2015). There is an urgent need to explore how adults can learn from and with children (Kraftl, 2015), and to identify creative and situated responses to support children’s sustainable living now and as they grow - without perpetuating the colonialism and anthropocentrism of the Anthropocene (Taylor, 2017). This special issue will address these needs through innovative and creative papers that investigate children’s engagement with climate change related issues in creative, hopeful and generative ways.
The salient theoretical construct for this special issue is common worlds (Common Worlds Research Collective, 2018). Children’s common worlds consist of the full gamut of complex relationships, traditions, and legacies that they inherit in the places in which they grow up (Taylor, 2013, 2017). Children’s common worlds include children’s relationships with their immediate natural and built environments, with the other human and nonhuman beings that share these same environments, and, in settler societies, with complex cultural, colonial, and environmental historical traditions and legacies. This inclusive feminist framework, developed by geographer Affrica Taylor, resists the nature/culture divide and situates childhoods within entangled human and nonhuman, social and environmental issues and concerns. Unlike the idealized natural worlds usually associated with Romantic Euro-Western traditions of nature and childhood, common worlds are the actual, messy, unequal, and imperfect worlds real children inherit and co-inhabit along with other human and nonhuman beings and entities (Taylor, 2013, 2017).
The special issue brings common worlds discussions into conversation with those of early childhood pedagogies to enrich narratives of climate change. Specifically, we invite contributions that engage situated, hopeful, and speculative stories for livable futures within multiple childhood contexts.
Submission deadlines: Abstracts are due July 1, 2019, and complete papers need to be submitted by September 30, 2019
Please email submissions to: [email protected]Read more
The AECEO regrets to hear of any cost increases for registered early childhood educators (RECEs), including the recently announced College of Early Childhood Educators (CECE) $10 registration fee increase. Despite the necessary role of the CECE in professionalization, we know that RECE wages still do not adequately reflect the value of their work or their level of education and many experience financial hardship. This is why we believe it is in the best interest of our members to focus on our successful advocacy campaign for improved wages and working conditions for all RECEs.Read more
With a PC majority we will continue building an ECE led movement across Ontario. We are going to work harder, work smarter and organize more ECEs to build power for change. The Association of Early Childhood Educators Ontario will continue building a strong collective voice for all early childhood educators, who are the heart of our communities.
With more than 55,000 registered early childhood educators in Ontario, we can make a difference when we come together. Please, join or renew your membership with the Association of Early Childhood Educators Ontario so that we can continue our important work of supporting all ECEs in the province.
As we move forward don’t let anyone tell you that what we do is not valuable or important, that care is not education, that we can’t afford to invest in our children or that early childhood educators don’t deserve better wages and greater professional recognition.
As we continue to build ECE Power please check out our Campaign Toolkit - we plan to keep our toolkit current with new resources for ECEs who want to get involved.
Singer/Songwriter Jamie Harland has shared her original song, Imagine...Quality Care with the AECEO for our 2018 Provincial Day of Action to help advocate for the importance of early childhood education and care in our communities.
Will you sing-a-long with Jamie in support of quality care?
Our Biggest issue of eceLINK!
The AECEO Board, Editorial Committee and staff are very excited to present the biggest issue ever of the eceLINK magazine.
This special issue offers a focus on Indigenous Knowledges and Pedagogies in Early Childhood Education. It is exciting to offer a large number of peer reviewed articles, written in total by ten authors, that reflect the AECEO's commitment to the Truth and Reconciliation Commission's Calls to Action (2015). We envision these articles being used as conversation starters in your own communities and as ways forward to reconciliation.
This year, the Professional Pay & Decent Work project continues to build power as registered early childhood educators from across the province join together in an ECE led movement for decent work. From sharing our stories, to hosting local events that raise awareness and increase support for improved wages and working conditions - RECEs, early childhood staff, and parents are effectively organizing for quality, affordable, accessible early years and child care programs that have decent work for educators at the heart.
The AECEO has been working closely with our partners, the Ontario Coalition for Better Child Care (OCBCC), Institute for Change Leaders (ICL) and the Atkinson Centre for Society and Child Development. Together, we are focused on honing the strength and skills of the early childhood (EC) workforce to build an ECE led movement. We will continue to build the power needed to induce public policy progress on wages and working conditions for registered early childhood educators (RECEs) and staff in Ontario. Engaging a critical mass of informed supporters will build the AECEO`s power - bring our campaign to the next level and reinforce our position as the voice for RECEs in Ontario.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
Universal Child Care Is Possible Campaign Launch
April 26th 2018 at 10:30 a.m. – 11:30 a.m.
Ontario Coalition for Better Child Care and Association Early Childhood Educators Ontario Office
489 College St., Suite 206, Toronto ON M6G 1A5Read more
AECEO response to 2018 Ontario budget: Recognition for Early Childhood Educators and Free Child Care for Children 2.5 - 4 Years Old
2018 Ontario Budget: Recognition for Early Childhood Educators and Free Child Care for Children 2.5 – 4 Years Old.
Today’s budget would lead Ontario to a system of high quality, affordable early years and child care by addressing the key issues of affordability for families and decent work and professional pay for early childhood educators. The Association of Early Childhood Educators Ontario (AECEO) is pleased to see a commitment that would transform the way that early years and child care is delivered in the province.
The plan to make child care free and universal for all children 2.5 – 4 years and at an affordable fee for infants and toddlers will provide much-needed financial relief for families. The commitment to develop a comprehensive workforce strategy and wage scale for all registered early childhood educators (RECEs) and child care staff by 2020 is recognition of the valuable and important role that RECEs play in the lives of young children. RECEs have specialized knowledge of child development, they belong to the College of Early Childhood Educators, and they plan and implement pedagogy following How Does Learning Happen? Ontario’s Pedagogy for the Early Years (2014) – it is undoubtedly time for all RECEs to have professional pay, decent work and respect and recognition as valued professionals.
This policy builds on the extensive consultation with parents, advocates, child care providers, early childhood educators and women’s groups and the 2017 commitment to provide universally accessible, affordable child care for all children and families who need it. Finance Minister Sousa confirmed that an allocation of an additional $2.2 billion over 3 years includes funds to cover the full operating costs of child care services for children 2.5 – 4 years, funds to lower fees for infants and toddlers, funds for expansion of services and funds to establish a wage scale.
To assist First Nations communities $40 million has been designated over 3 years in new operating funding for new and existing child care programs on-reserve. An additional investment of $290 million over six years in new child care capital infrastructure starting in 2019-20 will create 4, 500 new child care spaces, doubling the current child care capacity on reserve.
The Innovation Fund of $30 million over three years is intended to assist child care programs and community groups in meeting the multifaceted challenges of providing flexible child care to meet the needs of families working non-regular hours and to support development and sustainability in the non-profit child care sector.
While this Budget outlines the first steps towards universally accessible and affordable child care for all it is important to note that the AECEO is committed to working with our ECE members, government, sector parents and parents to ensure responsible and effective implementation. There are, of course, still many details that need to be negotiated, such as expansion in the non-profit and public sector only. We have joined with many sector stakeholders in calling for a moratorium on the licensing of new for-profit child care operations because we believe that every dollar of public funds must go to our children and not into corporate pockets.
The wage scale that will be phased in over two years will include supervisors, early childhood educators, and non-ECE staff working in licensed child care centres, licensed home child care agencies, and Early ON child and family centres.
Projected funding to implement the wage scale would ramp up to $500 million once it is fully implemented to bring compensation for RECEs and staff in the early years and child care sector in line with RECEs working in full-day kindergarten. In the interim the Wage Enhancement / Home Child Care Enhancement grant will be maintained. It is important to note that AECEO is also calling for improvements to compensation for RECEs working in full-day kindergarten for Ontario school boards. It is critical to address further details of the wage scale and the AECEO is committed to working collaboratively with government, ECEs and sector partners and school boards to ensure that implementation of the wage scale contributes positively to the recruitment and retention of all RECEs - no matter where they work.
In November 2017 over 4,000 RECEs and early years staff responded to the AECEO’s consultation survey that helped to inform the recommendations that we made to government on behalf of all RECEs in Ontario. Our recommendations included:
- The province of Ontario should immediately develop a new base funding approach to early years and child care programs in Ontario to ensure quality, affordability and access.
- The province should immediately establish a provincial wage scale with a $25/hr minimum for RECEs to inform base funding, while recognizing the level of education and years of experience for RECEs and staff in accordance with pay equity principles. In the interim, maintain and immediately extend the Wage Enhancement Grant/Home Child Care Enhancement grant to establish a minimum wage of $25/hr for all RECEs.
- Develop and implement an Early Childhood Workforce Learning Framework which will enable such quality-related staff supports as paid time for professional learning and expanded opportunities for acquiring and upgrading qualifications.
- Create practitioner roles and identify educational requirements alongside a career ladder that will strengthen program quality while formally recognizing the value of credentials and experience. This initiative will support the recruitment and retention of registered early childhood educators and a greater incentive to make ECEC a life-long career.
- Change the positions of full-time Designated Early Childhood Educators working in the publicly-funded school systems to year-round and salaried status with compensation commensurate with other full time educators in the public education systems.
- Commission an external review of the Full-Day Kindergarten educator team and classroom conditions to inform future planning and development.
Today's announcement from the provincial government outlines a plan to transform the way early years and child care programs are provided and steers Ontario on the path toward a real system of high quality, affordable early years and child care programs where registered early childhood educators (RECEs) and staff are well-supported with professional pay and decent work.
The commitment to provide child care at no cost for children who are 2.5 - 4 years and at an affordable fee for infants and toddlers will provide much-needed financial relief for families while the establishment of a transparent wage scale for early childhood educators and child care staff will ensure that children benefit from high-quality programs delivered by well-educated and well-compensated ECEs.
"High-quality early years education for children begins and ends with well-educated, well-compensated and passionate early childhood educators (ECEs). Registered early childhood educators are trained professionals who play a valuable and important role in our communities by caring for and educating children while their parents go to work or finish studying. Nearly 10,000 people have added their names to the AECEO's petition calling for all ECEs to have professional pay because we know that children benefit when their educators are well-supported. By establishing a provincial wage scale supported with appropriate public funding Ontario can recruit and retain qualified early childhood educators who will be better able to build stable and fulfilling careers in the early years and child care sector. This unprecedented announcement means that Ontario will take a bold leap away from a patchwork of services toward a real system of quality care and education that families can trust." expressed Lyndsay Macdonald, RECE and Coordinator, Association of Early Childhood Educators Ontario.
This is a true testament to the power that early childhood educators have when we come together and work toward creating positive change that we know will benefit children, families and society. "It is truly inspiring and empowering to see that our advocacy efforts and the efforts of every ECE who has joined our campaign really are making a difference for ECEs, children and families."
Stay tuned for AECEO's full response to the 2018 Provincial Budget on Wednesday.
Read the government's press release here.
Free child care for preschoolers is a key recommendation coming out of Dr. Cleveland's report
The implementation of a wage grid is a key recommendation in the Workforce Study
We have a call to action and need your help!
Make sure you are following the AECEO on social media - Like us on Facebook and Follow us on Twitter. To make an impact, we need to go viral in the lead up to the Ontario Budget and we need your help.
We need your signatures for our online petition it is part of our campaign as we are calling on the government to fund professional pay for all ECEs in Ontario regardless of where they work. Professional pay should reflect ECEs specialized training, the value of their work and their participation in continuous professional learning. We are asking for your help to spread the work about signing our online petition for Professional Pay.
You can sign the petition at:http://www.aeceo.ca/sign_the_petition_for_professional_pay By signing you are showing support for the professional pay for professional work campaign.
We need just over 600 more signatures to get to 10,000! Help us to show the Finance Minister that the Provincial government should fund professional pay for professional work!
Help to spread the word!
On the following dates share these messages on Facebook and Twitter, or retweet and share AECEO's posts.
We're expecting to see $600M in #ONBudget2018 as a down payment on the affordability of child care parents need @SousaCharles @Kathleen_Wynne @Indira_NH #affordable #childcarenow #ONpoli
On Thursday March 22nd tweet/post
#ECE professionals need to see a commitment of $375M in #ONBudget2018 to establish a province-wide wage grid with a $25/hr minimum for ECEs - they deserve it @SousaCharles @Kathleen_Wynne @Indira_NH #professionalpay #DecentWork #ChildCareNow #ONpoli
On Monday March 26th tweet/post
Affordable, quality #childcare is key to closing the gender-wage gap in Ontario. We are expecting to see a commitment for publicly funded early years and childcare so that all women can enter the workforce @SousaCharles @Kathleen_Wynne @Indira_NH #ChildCareNow #ONpoli #EqualPay
On Wednesday March 28th tweet/post
Parents, families and educators are expecting big things for #earlyyears and #childcare in #ONBudget2018 @SousaCharles @Kathleen_Wynne @Indira_NH #ChildCareNow #ONpoli
Let's tell government that we expect an investment that will bring tangible benefits for families and Early Childhood Educator professionals.
Thanks again for your ongoing support. Look for more calls to action this week!
The ink is drying on Ontario's budget, on Wednesday March 28th, Ontario's Finance Minister, the Honourable Charles Sousa will deliver the 2018 Ontario budget. If each of us takes 10 minutes to complete a simple digital action, we can make sure that Ontario Budget 2018 delivers on our demands for early years and child care.
Copy, paste and edit (as outlined) the text below to send an email to Ontario Finance Minister, the Honourable Charles Sousa, and copy Premier Kathleen Wynne and Minister of Education Indira Naidoo-Harris to remind our leaders that you are expecting big things for child care in the upcoming 2018 budget.
Subject line: Ontarians expect big things for child care in the 2018 budget
Dear Charles Sousa,
I am writing to you to express my concerns about the child care crisis in Ontario. Parent fees for child care are sky high while early childhood educator’s wages are too low. I am (describe yourself: registered early childhood educator, parent, child care provider, etc) and I strongly believe that the government of Ontario should publicly fund child care programs so that they are affordable for all families and so that children can benefit from educators who are well paid. There are solutions to the child care crisis, I support the 2018 budget recommendations made by Association of Early Childhood Educators Ontario (AECEO) and the Ontario Coalition for Better Child Care (OCBCC):
- Commit at least $375 million as a first step to establishing a province-wide wage scale for RECEs and program staff with entry level pay for RECEs at $25 per hour and commensurate compensation for other program staff.
- Allocate $600 million as a down payment on affordability; Begin operational funding of all licensed infant and toddler spaces in child care centres and establish a sliding fee scale in 2018-19.
- Expand the capital funding for the non-profit and public sectors to make a real difference in availability of child care spaces.
Increased public funding to early years and child care will improve the recruitment and retention of Ontario RECEs through appropriate wages and good working conditions while ensuring that services are more affordable for families and children.
Look for more follow up e-blasts about calls to action leading up to the budget reading on March 28, 2018!
Since 1917, March 8th has been recognized as International Women's Day. This year's theme is #PressforProgress
We will post updates and list events that are taking place across Ontario. Stay tuned for more information!
Download and share our SAVE THE DATE flyer for the IWD march in Toronto taking place on March 3rd 2018. The AECEO is working with our partners to bring out the largest child care and early years contingent that we've ever had at the Toronto march.
Empirical research consistently demonstrates that high-quality early childhood education and care is directly linked to well-educated and qualified registered early childhood educators (RECE). The compensation and support available to educators and staff must recognize the essential role that they play in children’s days, months, years and future outcomes. Fair and appropriate wages and working conditions cannot be based solely or primarily on parent fees as the existing market model of child care instantiates. Staffing expenses are, typically 80-90% of child care centres’ operating budgets, while centre revenues are generated primarily from parent fees. With parent fees already beyond the budget of the majority of Ontario families, the only viable solution to creating access to high quality, affordable child care programs is through significant government funds devoted to the recruitment and retention of qualified, RECE professionals.
Turnover is much lower in a stable system where wages and working conditions for educators and staff are prioritized. Research shows that good wages and working conditions contribute to job satisfaction and ultimately to better outcomes for children and families. Improving recruitment and retention is critical with the anticipated demand for RECEs in more child care and EarlyON spaces.
Executive Summary of Budget Action Recommendations
- Implement a workforce strategy to ensure all ECEC staff have professional pay and decent work;
- Implement a provincial wage scale with a $25/hr minimum and a benefit package, including paid sick and personal leave days, for registered early childhood educators. We advise that the Government should commit at least $375 million as a first step to establishing a province-wide wage scale for RECEs and program staff with entry level pay for RECEs at $25 per hour and commensurate compensation for other program staff;
- We support the Ontario Coalition for Better Child Care in their call to allocate $600 million as a down payment on affordability; Begin operational funding of all licensed infant and toddler spaces in child care centres and establish a sliding fee scale in 2018-19; Expand the capital funding for the non-profit and public sectors to make a real difference in availability of child care spaces; Ensure all funding is indexed to inflation; Commit funding and resources to support system infrastructure including data and research;
In This Issue:
- Transforming Work in Ontario's Early Years and Child Care Sector
- Decent Work Charter and Supporting Documents
- Reconceptualizing Early Childhood Education Annual Conference, 2017
- Transcending Borders in Early Childhood Education and Care
- The Centrality of Caring: Embracing Our Work as Political Practice (Featured article available to the public)
- Book Review: Far from the tree, written by L. Michelle Coupe, Illustrated by Casandra Ward
- Profile: Play and Learning Centres for Deaf and Hard of Hearing Children
We would like to thank the following advertisers for helping to support this issue of the eceLINK