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117 new child care spots coming to Fort St. John

The province has announced 117 new child care spaces at schools in Fort St. John.
child care

The province has announced 117 new child care spaces at schools in Fort St. John.

The province says spaces will open at Little Griffins Clubhouse (36 spaces), Little Kodiaks Clubhouse (27 spaces), Little Gators Clubhouse (27 spaces), and Little Royals Clubhouse (27 spaces).

"School District 60 is pleased to be able to support families in the Fort St. John area by offering affordable before- and after-school child care in four additional schools," said Board Chair Helen Gilbert "Having child care at the local school reduces the number of transitions students have in a day, which is easier for them and their families. The improvements include sensory rooms, along with new playgrounds and outdoor classroom spaces that will benefit all students. The board feels that these new child care spaces are a win for our community."

Funds are coming from the Childcare BC New Spaces Fund, with spaces to open starting this spring and fall.

Little Griffins Clubhouse: Renovations to an existing classroom in Alwin Holland Elementary school will add 36 spaces for school-age children and will be operated by School District 60. The new child care centre will include a dedicated sensory room that is designed to help calm and focus children with extra-support needs. The new spaces are expected to be finished for April 2021.

Little Kodiaks Clubhouse: A new modular building at Duncan Cran Elementary school will add 27 spaces for school-age children. The new spaces are expected to open in September 2021. The program will be temporarily housed within the school starting March 2021.

Little Gators Clubhouse: Renovations to an existing modular at Bert Ambrose Elementary school will add 27 spaces for school-age children. The new spaces are expected to open in April 2021.

Little Royals Clubhouse: Renovations to an existing modular at Robert Ogilvie Elementary school will add 27 spaces for school-age children. The new spaces are expected to open in September 2021.

The province says 367 new child care spaces have been funded in the city since July 2018.

"These new child care spaces for families in Fort St. John are bringing us one step closer to delivering the quality, affordable and inclusive child care that all B.C. families deserve," said Minister of State for Child Care Katrina Chen. "Child care for families is key to B.C.'s economic recovery, and these new spaces will make it easier for parents, especially mothers who have been disproportionately impacted by the pandemic, to pursue their own goals by returning to work or school."

Email Managing Editor Matt Preprost at editor@ahnfsj.ca.