Fee increases coming for Champlain daycares
The Champlain daycare services have been running in a deficit for the past several years. As a result, prices will be going up.
Champlain Town Council approved the increase in daycare services for 2016 by $2 per day for daycare, $1per day for before and after school programs, and $1 per day for day camp. In 2017 and again in 2018 there will be an additional increase of $3 per day for daycare, $2 per day for before and after school programs, and $2 per day for day camp, for each year.
Currently, daycare service prices in Champlain are the lowest in the area with Hawkesbury charging $34 per day for daycare, and Russell, Rockland, and Limoges charging $40 per day.
Champlain Chief Administrative Officer, Paula Knudsen, prepared an administrative report along with daycare coordinator Marie Pageau Handfield, regarding fee increases to daycare services, brought before council. The fee increases will generate more revenue, therefore decreasing the daycares’ deficit by approximately $130,000 by 2018.
In 2014, the daycare services had a deficit of $179,000, and have been running at a deficit of approximately $70,000 to $106,000 since 2010. The daycare services include The Vankleek Hill Day Nursery, St. Jude’s Learning Centre, Journée Prolongée St-Grégoire, Journée Prolongée Atelier, and Atelier des Petits.
The report indicates there is no excessive spending and daycares are very well managed, operating on a shoe string budget. Most of the daycare workers are contractual, so they do not receive any form of benefits other than vacation pay. Knudsen stated in her report that daycare workers take pride in their work and strive to cut expenses when possible.
The Champlain Daycare offers a healthy meal, as well as two healthy snacks five days a week. Champlain serves 150 children per day, every day except weekends and holidays, and employs 30 daycare workers. There is also ample opportunity for Early Childhood Education students to complete internships at one of the Champlain daycare facilities.
Knudsen added in her report that good daycare services attract people to the area, providing an investment in the future.