University of Saskatchewan to build a 90-spot child-care facility

The University of Saskatchewan Board of Governors approved a new child-care facility to be built in the university's College Quarter.

The building will go out for tender next month and a construction start date will be negotiated shortly, explained Patti McDougall, vice-provost of teaching and learning at the University of Saskatchewan.

"The development of child-care spaces will benefit the student experience, especially for graduate and Aboriginal students," said McDougall. "The need for child care certainly exceeds the 110 spaces we currently have."

The new facility will be run by a third-party organization that will be responsible for costs associated with operating the centre, while the university will maintain the building.

"The University of Saskatchewan Students Union is extremely pleased to see the university taking the right step towards making education more accessible for students who are also parents," said Max Fineday, USSU president. "This has been a long time coming and certainly there is more work to be done."

The university has secured all the funding needed for this project from a number of sources, including donors and the Ministry of Education. In total, the ministry provided the university $1,379,890.

"Our government is committed to meeting the demands of a growing province and that means ensuring that there are high-quality child-care spaces for our young people and that parents have the supports they need to earn a post-secondary education and take part in the many opportunities available in our workforce," said Education Minister Don Morgan. "Since 2007, our government has increased the number of licensed child-care spaces in Saskatchewan by 4,935, or 53 per cent, and these particular spaces will not only benefit Saskatoon families, but are also important for the U of S to remain competitive."

The Board of Governors also gave the child-care expansion committee the go-ahead to explore other long-term child-care expansion possibilities, including the renovation and expansion of the USSU Childcare Centre.

"We will actively seek ways to reduce the costs of building the new centre so that we can allocate the remaining funds to an expansion project that will yield even more spots," said McDougall. "The USSU Childcare Centre has capacity for 66 children and if we are able to renovate and expand that centre, we may be able to accept 23 more children."


For more information, contact:

Meghan Sired

Communications Co-ordinator

University of Saskatchewan

306-966-6068 (office)

306-381-7992 (cell)
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