The Government of Saskatchewan and Canada recently announced it will be investing $5.4 million to provide up to a $2 an hour increase for Early Childhood Educators (ECE). They say it’s in recognition of the important services they provide in supporting families who require child care, and that it will help with recruitment and retention. 

The Government of Saskatchewan says the Wage Enhancement Grant will be funded through the Canada-Saskatchewan Canada-Wide Early Learning and Child Care Agreement, which will also support future ECEs with free post-secondary training, professional development opportunities and many other programs.

"Early Childhood Educators provide our youngest learners with quality early learning and the building blocks they need to prepare them for school," Education Minister Dustin Duncan said. "This investment helps recognize the hard work these professionals do every day while creating an incentive for new individuals to begin a career as a certified Early Childhood Educator."

"Early Childhood Educators are at the very heart of the Canada-wide Early Learning and Child Care system," said Canada's Minister for Families, Children and Social Development, Karina Gould. "Today's announcement in Saskatchewan is another meaningful step toward ensuring the work of these professional educators is valued throughout their lifelong career."

Certified ECEs have the knowledge and skills to deliver programs that meet the needs of individuals and support their development and building of strong relationships, says the Government in a release. 

“The investment in wage increases help address the compensation necessities for ECEs. This increase is a step toward the development of the wage grid for ECEs, which the Government of Saskatchewan will implement by the end of 2022-23. Saskatchewan child care centres can expect to receive more information on the ECE wage increase during the last week of September,” stated the Government release. 

"This announcement is a wonderful step to help stabilize the Early Learning and Child Care (ELCC) workforce during these challenging times," Saskatchewan Early Childhood Association (SECA) Executive Director Georgia Lavallee said. "Early Childhood Educators are the heart of ELCC and we look forward to continued support and investments into the workforce."