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Nova Scotia to meet 2026 targets for daycare under federal funding deal: officials

HALIFAX — Nova Scotia Education Department officials say the province is on track to meet a target of 9,500 new daycare spaces by March 2026 under an agreement with the federal government.

However, the officials wouldn’t say whether the target would be enough to meet the needs of the province’s growing population during an appearance today before a legislature committee.

Deputy minister Elwin LeRoux says the $605-million daycare agreement was based on the province’s population when the deal was signed in July 2021.

LeRoux, however, says the department knows it needs to do more to meet demand.

He says just over 3,800 new spaces, or 40 per cent of the overall target, have been created so far.

LeRoux told the committee he is confident the department will reach the daycare space target and fulfil its pledge to ensure that those spaces cost an average of $10 a day by the 2026 deadline.

Between Oct. 1, 2022 and Oct. 1 2023, Nova Scotia’s population increased by 30,750 people, or almost three per cent — the third fastest year-over-year growth since 1951. 

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Jan. 17, 2024.

The Canadian Press

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