Many parents choose to enroll their children in daycare or preschool. Preschools in Toronto are designed to prepare young children around 2-3 years old for school. Once kids reach school age, they are expected to attend regular school.
Daycare services are in rather high demand in Toronto, and prospective parents should take a great deal of time looking over their options to decide which daycare is best for them. Most day cares keep a waiting list that parents will need to sign onto so that they can ensure their child has a spot. This should be done as soon as possible, most parents sign onto waiting lists even before their child has been born. Some people run unregulated daycares out of their homes, but ideally you should seek an approved daycare facility.
Daycare costs in Toronto generally run between $200 to $300 per week. The government offers tax breaks on daycare from a registered facility, to the tune of about $100 per child, per month. Registered facilities may be in-home daycares or larger institutions. Daycare centers will take children up to school age, and some will accept older kids for after-school care.
There are many daycares in Toronto to choose from, but here are a few to get you started:
- New Steps Childcare and Infant Centre – A full service daycare centre with two locations, and a wide range of infant care services.
- Timothy Eaton Infant & Toddler Centre – A well respected infant and toddler daycare in the heart of the Scarborough area.
1251 Bridletowne Circle
Scarborough, ON M1W 1S7
- The Learning Jungle – A care provider for children ages 0 to 12, with several locations to serve you.
Visit the following sites for a large database of daycare and preschool facilities:
For those who choose to stay home with their children, there are many playgroups available. These two resources will help you find the ones closest and most appropriate for you.
- Family Resource Centre (http://www.thefamilyresourcecentre.ca), which has special programs designed for newcomers to the city.
- Playgroup meetups is a great database to find playgroups near your home. http://playgroup.meetup.com/cities/ca/on/toronto/
Some families in Toronto, particularly those with parents who are both employed, choose to utilize the services of a nanny or au pair to help with childcare. Expats hoping to hire a full-time minder for their children should expect to pay between $300 to $400 per week for live-out services, and around $250 to $300 for live-in au pairs and nannies. Below is a list of websites you can use to find the right nanny for you.
- Great Au Pair
Click here for a site where you can post job offerings and get in touch with potential au pairs.
- ABC Nannies
A Vancouver-based company that helps pair nannies to families in all major Canadian cities, including Toronto.
- Easy Au Pair
Click the above link for a site that matches prospective parents with au pairs.