University of Saskatchewan begins construction of new child care centre

On a week when CBC is highlighting the challenge that parents face in trying to find licensed child care, the University of Saskatchewan is getting ready to expand the USSU Childcare Centre.

Capacity for children will jump to 200 on campus

An architect's rendering of the new USSU Childcare Centre expansion at the University of Saskatchewan. (University of Saskatchewan)

On a week when CBC is highlighting the challenge that parents face in trying to find licensed child care, the University of Saskatchewan is getting ready to expand the childcare centre on campus. 

The new expansion will have room for 90 children, bringing the number of licensed child care spaces at the U of S to 200.

The province is investing $1.3 million dollars in the $4.6 million dollar expansion.

"I've heard countless stories from parents who found it increasingly difficult to find child care that was accessible and affordable," said outgoing Students' Union President Max Fine Day. "This new child care centre is going to go a long way towards reducing some of the stress and a lot of the barriers that students currently face."

Student Tanya Napper's two children both attended the centre. She called it a life saver.

"I wouldn't have pursued my studies if I hadn't had a secure space like this," she said. "It's safe, secure and both of my kids were so prepared for school when they started."

University Interim President Gordon Barnhart hopes the new centre will attract more indigenous students.

"35 per cent of the students needing child care are aboriginal," he said. "So that will, for sure, reduce an obstacle for them."

While the government is today highlighting its record in bringing more childcare spaces to Saskatchewan, there was no new money for licensed child care in this year’s budget. The Saskatchewan Party has allocated funding for 4,935 new licensed child care spaces since November 2007.

Comments

To encourage thoughtful and respectful conversations, first and last names will appear with each submission to CBC/Radio-Canada's online communities (except in children and youth-oriented communities). Pseudonyms will no longer be permitted.

By submitting a comment, you accept that CBC has the right to reproduce and publish that comment in whole or in part, in any manner CBC chooses. Please note that CBC does not endorse the opinions expressed in comments. Comments on this story are moderated according to our Submission Guidelines. Comments are welcome while open. We reserve the right to close comments at any time.