Child Care Policies

By-Law Number
As Amended by

Legislative History: Enacted September 19, 2017 (By-law No. CPOL.-204-456); Amended June 26, 2018 (By-law No. CPOL.-285-276); Amended July 25, 2023 (By-law No. CPOL.-204(a)-188)

Last Review Date: July 25 2023

Service Area Lead: Deputy City Manager, Social and Health Development

1. Policy Statement

That child care and early years services in our communities be accessible and available to meet the diverse needs of all our residents. Recognizing the many personal, social, physical and economic benefits to the health and well-being and quality of life that children and families derive from participating in child care and early years programs and services, the City of London, as the Consolidated Municipal Service Manager for London and Middlesex County, in partnership with communities, is therefore committed to:

a) Equitable Access

working to ensure that all families have access to a range of services contained within a comprehensive child care system;

b) High Quality Programs

working to ensure that child care programs and services are of high quality and support children's health, safety and development;

c) Parental Choice

supporting the provision of accessible, coordinated information about child care services to ensure that parents have enough information and assistance to make informed choices;

d) Parental or Community Involvement

ensuring that key community members, including parents and other community leaders, are involved in significant decision-making;

e) Partnerships

working in partnership with community groups and other funders to ensure that local programs for children and families are coordinated, but not duplicated;

f) Ongoing Monitoring and Evaluation

ensuring that the child care system is monitored and evaluated on a regular basis to work towards a system that is effective, affordable, inclusive, flexible and responsive to parent and local needs; and

g) Allocation of Resources

allocating appropriate resources to accomplish these above noted commitments, within annual allocations and with regard to the municipal budget by various levels of government and anticipating fair user fees.

2. Definitions

2.1 Throughout this policy, “child care and early years programs and services” refers to program services that provide licensed child care (school age and licensed home care), or authorized recreational and skill building programs, or are early years programs and services, as defined in the Child Care and Early Years Act, 2014.

2.2 Throughout this policy, the term "Administration" refers to the Director, Child Care and Early Years or an authorized designate.

2.3 Throughout this policy, “Parent” includes a person having lawful custody of a child or a person who has demonstrated a settled intention to treat a child as a child of his or her family.

3. Applicability

This policy applies to parents as defined in this policy, child care and early years program and services operators and City of London employees.

4. The Policy

That a policy be established to assist families with children (0 to 12 years) requiring financial assistance to access child care and early years programs which are part of our healthy communities. The objectives of this policy are:

a) to provide immediate child care financial assistance for children who are considered to be at risk;

b) to provide immediate child care financial assistance to parents leaving the social assistance system;

c) to enable parents to obtain or maintain employment;

d) to provide opportunities for optimal growth and development, social/emotional, socialization and speech & language through child care financial assistance;

e) to enable parents to attend school or be involved in academic upgrading activities; and,

f) to provide child care financial assistance for parents or child needs as identified by a therapeutic referral completed by a third party health professional working directly with the family for the duration of the referral.



The following aligns with Section 8 Ontario Regulations 138/15:

4.1 For parent(s) determined to be eligible through the financial income test:

(i) Immediate placement is given to children assessed by a recognized referral agency to be at a level of risk as well as children whose parent(s) leave the social assistance system.

(ii) Within the approved annual budget for the child care fee subsidy program, children be placed in child care programs (noting that children who qualify be provided either full or part-time child care fee subsidy depending on need) based on their order of application using their date of eligibility.

For each of the above priorities, the number of hours approved for child care fee subsidy will be based on need (for example: working full-time would be approved for a full day fee subsidy, working part-time would be approved for a part-time fee subsidy).

4.2 That parent(s) eligible for subsidy based on their child(ren)’s needs or parental needs must be referred to the City by a recognized social service agency or health care professional.

4.3 That the Administration be authorized to provide immediate child care subsidy to eligible parents who cease to receive Ontario Works because they have found employment or are attending post-secondary education.

4.4 That the Administration be requested to use its own discretion in extending child care subsidies to siblings of children receiving subsidized child care. This care would only be provided to those siblings between the ages of 0 and 12 years of age.

4.5 That all child care fee subsidy cases be reviewed, at a minimum, once every twelve months (from date of placement), or more often at the discretion of the Administration.

4.6 Where a family no longer meets the eligibility requirements as outlined above, the change in circumstances may affect a parents’ eligibility for child care financial assistance; it being pointed out that the stability or the effect of the change on the child's and/or the family's well-being will be taken into consideration by the Civic Administration before implementing any subsidy changes.

4.7 That parents reside within the City of London.

4.8 That when the budget allocation is projected to be at its maximum for the current year, no new placements shall be considered and a waiting list shall be established.

Special Cases

4.9 That the Administration be authorized to grant, under emergency conditions, child care financial assistance for parents to access child care and early years programs.


4.10 That the Civic Administration recognize the need to make referrals to the appropriate agencies to assist with any family matters to enhance the well-being of our clientele.



4.11 That all Funding Agreements executed between the City of London and operators for the purposes of operating child care and early years programs and services will be contingent upon approval from the Administrator appointed by the City under the Child Care and Early Years Act or written designate.

4.12 That the City will provide child care services by subsidizing spaces through Children’s Services Funding Agreements with licensed child care agencies and accredited recreation programs and camps.

4.13 That the City of London will not assume transportation costs but rather will continue to enter into agreements with child care and early years programs and services throughout the City in a variety of localized areas so that child care is available for children near their homes or their parent(s)’ workplace.

4.14 That child care policy and/or criteria changes be sent to all operators for their information as soon after approval as possible.

Last modified:Tuesday, April 09, 2024