Earlier this month, the Childcare Resource and Research Unit marked the six years that have passed since the federal government cancelled plans for a national child care program.
It wasn’t the first time Canada has tried – and failed – to create such a program, and the CRRU produced the following timeline to take a look back at what happened.
The newly formed Saskatoon Satellite of the CAYC (Canadian Association for Young Children) Saskatchewan Chapter invites everyone to their second event: Working with a Community In a Community, a site visit to Fairhaven School in Saskatoon on Saturday, March 3rd.
Participants will see the early childhood programs that make Fairhaven a holistic and dynamic site of early learning and care: the childcare centre, prekindergarten, kindergarten, Grade 1 and Grade 2, as well as representation from one of their connecting childcare homes. To end the morning, a discussion focused on working with community will be led by U of S teacher candidates.
Mary Ellen Turpel-Lafond knows first-hand what happens when children don’t get the social supports they need. All too often they end up in the courts.
Turpel-Lafond, who was appointed the BC Representative for Children and Youth in 2006, was previously a provincial court judge in Saskatchewan. She often found that the young people standing in front of her did not have advocates in their lives.
On Feb. 1 she delivered the Silas Halyk Visiting Scholar Lecture to University of Saskatchewan law students inside a packed house at the College of Law’s MLT Theatre. She said that she loves her role as an official advocate, working with children and youth "whose voices are not frequently heard."
One of the more troubling things for Saskatchewan, she said, is that the province has a disproportionate number of incarcerated 18-year-olds compared with B.C., despite the latter province’s larger population.
However, there are things that can be done to help kids – specifically providing the social supports they need as well as a forum for them to be heard. Turpel-Lafond pointed to efforts in B.C. that have had positive effects, such as a youth summit for immigrant refugee kids to give their input about changes to the English as a Second Language system.
“It’s a really good idea to spend time with young kids talking to them,” she said.
Boys have been lagging behind girls in recent years when it comes to performance in schools.
To help reverse the trend, an author and teacher who’s spent 30 years in the classroom thinks we need to accept that the early years of school are different for boys than for girls.
One of the challenges boys face, Reist said, is that there are almost no male teachers in the earliest grades elementary school that can help mentor boys.
Then there’s the tendency for boys to be more active. Boys move more, they fidget, they doodle, and these days, they have more technology distracting their attention.
“These kids, they have a very different attention span than they did 20 years ago,” Reist said. “They didn’t create the world they’ve come into…They’ve got a lot more temptations than we did.”
Nobel laureate Dr. James Heckman will be among the many experts coming to Moose Jaw this May for a comprehensive conference on early childhood development (ECD).
Heckman, the Henry Schultz Distinguished Service Professor of Economics at the University of Chicago, will be the keynote speaker for Imagine Our Future – Investing in the Early Years, May 9 to 11.
The Moose Jaw Early Childhood Coalition is hosting the conference. Among those joining Heckman will be Dr. Stuart Shanker, Distinguished Research Professor of Philosophy and Psychology at York University; Dr. Clyde Hertzman from UBC’s Human Early Learning Partnership; Jim Grieve, Assistant Deputy Minister, Ontario ELD; and Dr. Jean Clinton, McMaster University.
Aboriginal children make up a quarter of Saskatchewan’s child population, but they account for 80 per cent of the children within the child welfare system.
This is one of the key findings from a new report called Kiskisik Awasisak: Remember the Children, Understanding the Overrepresentation of First Nations Children in the Child Welfare System.
The report on Aboriginal children is part of the overall Canadian Incidence Study of Reported Child Abuse 2008. It was put together from data in 2008 by a team from universities across the country and follows up similar reports using data from 2003 and 1998.
This month, in Saskatoon, one of the research team members, Dr. Vandna Sinha, assistant professor from McGill University’s Centre for Research for Children and Families, outlined the report’s findings concerning the characteristics of children and caregivers, of households, of cases and forms of maltreatment.
“Neglect is the primary category of maltreatment in 46 per cent of investigations,” Sinha said.
A new report from the Canadian Pediatric Society adds further support to the call for more investment in early learning and child care.
Are We Doing Enough? A status report on Canadian public policy and child and youth health cites the economic rationale behind early learning and care, saying the return to society on money invested ranges from $4-8 for every $1 invested.
It also cites the high costs and lost productivity associated with child poverty as well as mental illness, which can be prevented or at least treated more effectively and less expensively through early intervention rather than later in life.
The University of Saskatchewan's Innovation Place will be the site of a gathering this month to examine First Nations children and their representation in the child welfare system. The event takes place Jan. 17 from 1:30 to 4 p.m. at the University of Regina's Faculty of Social Work Saskatoon Campus, Classroom 1 - The Atrium, Innovation Place (153-111 Research Dr.), Saskatoon.
The event will feature a presentation by Dr. Vandha Sinha, assistant professor at McGill University’s Centre for Research for Children and Families, on “Kiskisik Awasisak: Remember the Children, Understanding the Overrepresentation of First Nations Children in the Child Welfare System.”
Kiskisik Awasisak was publicly released on Nov. 14, 2011, and is the first report of the First Nations Component of the Canadian Incidence Study of Reported Child Abuse and Neglect 2008.
Canadians 55 and older think younger adults should “wait their turn” when it comes sharing in the country’s wealth, despite evidence that it’s getting harder for adults with young children to raise families.
This was a finding from a recent poll conducted for UBC researchers Paul Kershaw and Lynell Anderson from the Human Early Learning Partnership (HELP). The poll included respondents from Saskatchewan, as well as those in BC, Alberta, Manitoba, Ontario, Quebec, and Atlantic Canada; the full polling data is available here.
UBC researchers commissioned this poll as a follow-up to the release of their national report card, Does Canada Work for All Generations? The report looked at the challenges today’s young families – Generation Squeezed – are facing across the country.
Kershaw partnered with kidSKAN’s Nazeem Muhajarine and Sue Delanoy to release the report card at the University of Saskatchewan on Oct. 18. The Generation Squeezed story received media attention across the country and even from the New York Times.
We’re encouraging members in kidSKAN to fill out a survey on new physical activity/sedentary behaviour guidelines for children aged 0-4 that are being developed by the Canadian Society for Exercise Physiology (CSEP).
New Canadian Physical Activity Guidelines for older children were released in January 2011.
CSEP is looking for feedback on the draft guidelines. The link to the survey monkey is only open for 10 days, so fill it out quickly. It should only take about 10 minutes.