HIGH FIVE® Accredited Organizations Permitted to Operate Authorized Recreational and Skill-Building Programs in Ontario

In April 2019, the Ontario government announced changes that will increase choices for families by allowing certain recreation providers to offer after school programs to children ages 4-12. That month, the omnibus Bill 66: Restoring Ontario's Competitiveness Act received Royal Assent. One section of this Act relates to the provision of child care and "authorized recreation and skill-building programs." The Act comes into effect on July 1, 2019.

This legislation allows children who are four years old (entering JK) to take part in authorized recreational and skill-building programs (operating for up to three hours per day). In order to implement the Act and further enhance opportunities for families, several amendments have been proposed to the regulations the Child Care and Early Years Act (CCEYA) and the Education Act. A proposed amendment to the CCEYA stipulates that in addition to municipalities, first nations, YMCAs, Boys and Girls Clubs, Ontario After School Programs, and MTCS attractions, HIGH FIVE Accredited Organizations and urban Indigenous organizations that are members of the Ontario Federation of Indigenous Friendship Centres with Friendship Centre status would also be permitted to operate 5 days per week, up to 3 hours per day, for children ages 4-12.

This represents a significant development for HIGH FIVE and paves the way for further recognition by relevant government agencies.