The Albertan Government is asking parents for their input on the future of childcare in the province with a new survey. 

The Early Learning and Childcare Engagement survey, open till February 11, will give parents the chance to share what they expect from childcare operators and what factors influence their childcare choices. 

This survey is part of the Canada-Alberta Canada-wide Early Learning and Childcare Agreement (CWELCC), which aims to have a childcare system primarily funded by the government instead of parent fees by 2025-2026. 

The newly proposed system aims to lower childcare costs to $10 per day by 2025-2026, but this goal isn't without criticism. 

The Association of Alberta Childcare Entrepreneurs (AACE) believes that the CWELCC could have detrimental effects on the quality of care and principle of parental choice. 

“An underfunded system, introduced by a federal Government obsessed with prioritizing its public childcare model, will only diminish the quality of childcare and leave families with no choice but to resort to underfunded state-run programs. This is just one of the real costs of the $10/day childcare promise,” said Krystal Churcher, Chair of the AACE. 

While the upcoming system change has its critics, many believe it will positively affect the province going forward. 

Minister of Childcare and Family Services, Searie Turton, believes the effectiveness of the program is significant. 

“Since the agreement was started a couple of years ago, over $900 million has been interjected back into the pockets of families. Many families across the province have seen savings of almost $1000 a month per child,” Turton said. 

Airdrie is one of the communities that is expected to see the positive benefits of the program. 

“A key part of the new childcare agreement is to open new daycare spaces for families; in many communities like Airdrie, families are looking for spots to have their children. So, this grant will help open new additional spaces that will help families in Airdrie,” Turton said. 

While the program has its critics, over 100 thousand families have seen the positive effects of the program on the path to affordable childcare. 

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