At what age should my child go to school?

What do parents need to know about kindergarten full-time programs?

Dear Parents,

Please feel free to read these guidelines offered by the Ontario Government in regards to Kindergarten Full-Time Programs.

These guidelines are just for information purposes, however you choose when to enroll your child/children to school.

Here is the direct link to the official webpage of Ontario Ministry of Education:

Still have questions after looking through these pages? Here are some other commonly asked questions and their answers.

If my school offers full-day kindergarten, can I choose to send my child part-time?

Full-day kindergarten is not mandatory. At the schools where full-day kindergarten is offered, parents can choose to remove their child for part of the day if that is what works best for them. Like existing kindergarten programs, parents will continue to have the choice about whether to enrol their four- and five-year olds in full-day kindergarten. In Ontario, children are required to attend school once they turn six years old.

Will the school board provide busing or other transportation for children to and from full-day kindergarten?

Your school board may provide transportation to and from the regular school day portion of full-day kindergarten (for example, to arrive at school at 9 a.m. and to go home at 3 p.m.).

Parents are responsible for getting their child to and from the before- and after-school programs. Parents are also responsible for arranging for transportation if they choose to send their child to school after the regular start time or before the school day ends.

For more information about transportation, contact your local school board.

When can I register my child for September 2014?

At many school boards, registration for September 2014 began in January or February 2014. Contact your local school or school board for more information about timing and requirements for kindergarten registration.

How many students will be in a full-day kindergarten class?

Full-day kindergarten classes have an average of 26 students. With two qualified professionals in the classroom – a teacher and an early childhood educator (ECE) – there is an average of one adult for every 13 children. This means that more students will get one-on-one attention and opportunities to learn together in small groups.

Where a school provides a board-operated before- and after-school program, the program will be led by a registered ECE and there will be a minimum of one adult for every 15 children. If there are more than 15 children enrolled in the before- and after-school program, a second adult will support the ECE. The second adult may receive additional training to work in the program, but is not required to be a registered ECE.

Where a school provides a before- and after-school program through a third-party provider, such as a community agency, the staffing and adult-pupil ratios must comply with the Day Nurseries Act.

My school currently doesn’t have room for full-day kindergarten. How will they be able to provide the program?

The government is providing school boards with capital funding to build new classrooms and renovate existing ones to support the implementation of full-day kindergarten. The Ministry of Education will continue to work with school boards to determine the funding necessary to provide appropriate space for full-day kindergarten.

Will families save on child care expenses as a result of full-day kindergarten?

Families presently paying for child care can expect to save thousands each year as a result of full-day kindergarten because their children will spend more time in publicly funded school programs and less time in paid child care.

For example, a working family with a child in kindergarten may have previously paid $968 each month for child care, but with full-day kindergarten that same family could pay $313 each month for child care – a savings of $655 each month ($6,550 per year).

Fees for child care and before- and after-school programs vary across the province and savings will depend on individual circumstances.

How will full-day kindergarten affect my current child care provider?

As full-day kindergarten is phased in, more parents will be able to take advantage of school-based before and after school programs. As a result, the need for community-based child care for children of this age group during the school year may decrease.

The government is currently working to modernize the child care system to ensure it works well with full-day kindergarten. While this process is going on, municipalities will continue to work closely with community organizations and local operators to offer child care options that respond to the needs of parents.

Will school boards offer child care programs during school breaks or for older children?

Where there is sufficient parent demand and board capacity, boards are encouraged to provide programs themselves or through a third party, at other times of the year, such as on PD days and school breaks and holidays, for four- and five-year-olds.

Boards that have the capacity and the parent demand are also encouraged to provide board or third-party programs at other times of the year for children aged six- to 12-years-old. Talk to staff at your local school or school board for more information about programs available locally.

For more information: