Early Childhood Educator Training Wage Program

This program helps strengthen the Early Childhood Educator (ECE) workforce by providing a training wage to ECE Assistants (ECEAs) and certified ECEs, employed by licensed child care facilities in the Basin, to support them to complete and/or upgrade their ECE qualifications.

Employer Criteria

To be eligible to apply to the ECE Training Wage Program, the child care provider must:

  • be a licensed child care facility (eligible designations listed below) in good standing with the Ministry of Children and Family Development;
  • continue to employ the ECEA or ECE (Employee) for the duration of the training on a part- or full-time basis;
  • be committed to providing permanent employment after completion of the training;
  • work with the Employee to develop a mutually agreed upon education plan and timeline;
  • be in good standing with the BC Corporate Registry (if the Employer is a non-profit society or registered company); 
  • have a WorkSafeBC account in good standing (WorkSafeBC coverage is required for all Employers with employees and is recommended for Employers that do not have employees); and
  • be located in the Columbia Basin Trust region.

Employee Criteria

To be eligible for the training wage, the ECEA/ECE must:

  • be a resident of the Columbia Basin Trust region;
  • hold a valid Early Childhood Educator Assistant certificate or Early Childhood Educator certificate issued by the BC ECE Registry;
  • be directly employed or self-employed on a full- or part-time basis by an eligible licenced child care facility;
  • be enrolled part-time in an ECE program at a recognized post-secondary institute with the intention to complete the ECE certification or upgrades within a mutually agreed upon timeline with their Employer (up to a maximum of three years); and
  • submit evidence of successful course completion to their Employer at the end of each course/semester.

Post-secondary Institute Requirements

To be eligible for the Training Wage, Employees must be enrolled in a post-secondary institute that:

  • is approved by the Province of BC as a recognized program and institute; and
  • meets provincial standards and ECE certification requirements. 

Non-profit and for-profit providers of licensed child care in the Basin region with the following designations who are eligible to apply on behalf of eligible ECEAs and ECEs employed at their facility.

  • Group Child Care
  • Multi-Aged Child Care
  • Preschools
  • Family Child Care*
  • In-Home Multi-Age Child Care

*To be eligible, providers operating Family Child Care must be intending to transition their license to In-Home Multi-Age Child Care when their ECE training is complete.

To ensure equitable distribution of program funds, the following indicates how many eligible staff per facility are eligible to receive the training wage. The program also considers geographic distribution of projects in its funding decisions.

Facilities licensed for under 32 spaces can apply on behalf of:

  • Two eligible staff to complete or upgrade their qualifications.

Facilities licensed for 32 or more spaces can apply on behalf of:

  • Four eligible staff to complete or upgrade their qualifications.

ECEAs are eligible to receive $17/hour, up to a maximum of $12,000 each + 15% mandatory employment related costs (MERCS), and ECEs are eligible to receive $20/hour, up to a maximum of $10,500 each + 15% MERCS, towards in-class/online instructional hours to complete and/or upgrade their ECE credentials at a recognized post-secondary institute of their choice.

  1. Download and review the Program and Application Guide.
  2. Use the worksheet to develop your application offline if you so choose.
  3. Use our online form to apply.

Applications are accepted on a first-received, first-served basis and are assessed as they come in and continue until all funding for the program has been committed.

You will receive an e-mail confirming approval/decline of your application approximately 15 business days following the receipt of your completed application.

If your application requires clarification or further information we will be in touch; however, we will not consider it ‘received’ until you have provided all required information.

Applications are accepted on a first-received, first-served basis and are assessed as they come in and continue until all funding for the program has been committed.