Early childhood education supports the development of children in our province by providing high-quality early learning and child care programs across Saskatchewan.

Early Childhood Educators who work in these programs provide children with positive early learning and developmentally appropriate experiences.

To recognize their passion and dedication as well as the importance of learning in the early years, the Government of Saskatchewan has proclaimed May 2020 as Early Childhood Education Month and May 13 as Early Childhood Educator Appreciation Day.

Educators are working hard to ensure our youngest residents of Saskatchewan are receiving quality education and are going to extraordinary lengths to keep them healthy and safe during this global health pandemic.

“In these unprecedented times, we all can recognize how important child care support is for many families who want to pursue career and education opportunities or work to provide for their families,” Deputy Premier and Education Minister Gordon Wyant said.  “On behalf of the Government of Saskatchewan, I want to thank Early Childhood Educators for continuing to make a tremendous difference in the lives of families and ensuring children are safe and well cared for.”

As part of the 2020-21 Budget Estimates, the Government of Saskatchewan has allocated funding of $73.5 million for licensed child care, including an increase of $1.7 million for existing licensed child care centres for operating costs.  Much of the work that is being done everyday by the early childhood education sector has also supported the initiatives of the Canada-Saskatchewan Early Learning and Child Care Agreement.

To ensure continuity of programs and services, the existing agreement will be extended to 2021 and will continue to focus on providing initiatives in accessibility, inclusivity, quality and Francophone minority language.  The Ministry of Education commends the efforts of all community partners who help to support the early learning sector in Saskatchewan.

“It is important to take the time to properly thank those who dedicate their lives to the care and education of our young children,” Saskatchewan Early Childhood Association Executive Director Georgia Siourounis said.  “Early childhood educators work hard to provide safe and loving environments where they can have a positive influence on a child’s life.”

To supplement the efforts of our early childhood educators, Play. Learn. Grow. Together! was developed as a public education program which provides parents and guardians of newborns to Kindergarten-aged children with easy to use tips and information to help enhance family learning at home.

The webpage and family-friendly videos can be found at www.saskatchewan.ca/residents/education-and-learning/prek-12-education-early-learning-and-schools/early-years-learning.

This is a useful online learning resource to help families with at-home learning opportunities for their children during the pandemic.  Please take the time this month, and particularly on May 13, to acknowledge and thank the early childhood educators working diligently to support our youngest citizens.