New online tools for parents: “Kindergarten: Ready, Set, Go!”

We’ve been making our website a priority over the past few years – to improve the information and resources we have available to the residents of Halton and increase the interactivity of our site. Now, parents of children ages three or four will find everything they need to know to help prepare their child for the transition to kindergarten in the new “Kindergarten: Ready, Set, Go!” pages.

Prepared in partnership between Halton Region, the Halton District School Board, the Halton Catholic School Board and the Ontario Early Years Centres, parents will find comprehensive information and interactive tools such as:

Topics and resources cover the five key areas of child development, health and building healthy lifestyles, setting routines, parenting tips, reading, schedules of school PD days and holidays, and upcoming local parenting presentations.Ready Set Go

In Halton, almost one in four five-year olds (Our Kids Network Report Card, Early Development Instrument) results is not ready for school. Halton Region, in partnership with our community organizations, want to help change this statistic and ensure parents in our region have the information, resources and support they need to help give their children the confidence and skills they need to succeed in school. The “Kindergarten: Ready, Set, Go!” pages should certainly help them achieve this goal.

Keep in mind that parents with children of any age – from pregnancy to raising teenagers –can connect directly with one of our public health nurses or child development staff at any time, in many ways, through HaltonParents:

As always, if you have any Regional concerns or comments you would like to share, please feel free to email me at gary.carr@halton.ca. You can also find me on Twitter @garycarrhalton or on Facebook. To receive further updates on Regional issues, please subscribe to my quarterly e-newsletter, “The Carr Report.”

Halton Region’s 2012 – 2015 Early Learning & Child Care Plan

Later this year, Halton Region will complete Halton’s 2012-2015 Early Learning & Child Care Plan. Developed every five years, this comprehensive plan helps inform the effective delivery of early learning and child care programs throughout Halton.

The creation of the Plan is not possible without the input of parents and child care providers throughout Halton Region. This spring, Halton Region staff has been surveying professionals who work with children as well as the families in Halton that use child care and early learning programs. The purpose of the surveys is to gather information and opinions on the early learning and child care system.  

So far, over 300 community stakeholders have been engaged in this consultation process. During the month of June, more than 5000 families will also be asked about  their opinions and family experiences related to using early learning and child care programs in Halton.  If you have at least one child that is 0 to 6 years of age and you would like to provide your input, you can access the survey at: www.halton.ca/earlyyearssurvey. All the information collected will provide great insight to the early learning and child care experiences of children and families in Halton. Our Kids Network External Link – Early Years Committee is the advisory committee for the Plan with an expanded membership of local child care providers.

Halton Region is committed to providing programs and services that help support parents and children. Between 2007 and 2010, Halton invested $6.1 million to deliver additional subsidized child care spaces in the region. Halton also offers financial assistance to help with the cost of child care for eligible families where a parent is working, going to school or looking for work.

The children of today are our future. Halton’s 2012-2015 Early Learning & Child Care Plan will help ensure that we are supporting children and families in the best way possible and moving towards Our Kids Network vision of “all children thrive.

If you have any Regional concerns or comments you would like to share, please feel free to email me at gary.carr@halton.ca. To receive further updates on Regional issues, please subscribe to my quarterly e-newsletter, “The Carr Report.”