Valleycliffe Elementary School will be the site of a new childcare facility in Squamish.
On April 25, the District of Squamish announced it had received $851,000 from the BC Ministry of Children and Family Development to create a purpose-built child care facility with 36 spaces, 12 of which will be full-time spaces for infants and toddlers younger than three years old. The 24 other spaces will be for group care for children 30 months to school age. The School District will provide land and Sea to Sky Community Services will operate the facility.
"Quality child care is integral to healthy childhood development and a family's ability to participate in the local workforce. We will continue to advocate with the Province for more spaces and more affordable childcare options in our community, and do our part to work with community partners and stakeholders to prioritize child care so that it does not continue to be a barrier for our families," District of Squamish Mayor Karen Elliott said in a press release.
Jaye Russell, the executive director of Sea to Sky Community Services Society, added that families in Squamish often wait up to two years for childcare spaces.
The SD48 board chair Rick Price said the location of the new facility at Valleycliffe Elementary "will also help our early learners transition smoothly from child care to elementary school."
The District also recently received $25,000 from the Community Child Care Planning Program that it will use for a 12-month project that will identify and plan childcare spaces in Squamish.