Earn a Qualified
Early Childhood Education Diploma
The objective of the Early Childhood Educators Qualifications Upgrade Program is to financially support individuals studying in the field, who work in Early Years settings, to obtain a ECE diploma and become eligible to apply for membership with the College of Early Childhood Educators (CECE).
Financial support is available to eligible applicants in the form of an education grant, travel grant, and training allowance. We are currently accepting applications for the Fall 2019 and Winter 2020 semesters.
What type of financial assistance is available through the Early Childhood Educators Qualifications Upgrade program?
The following types of financial assistance are available through this program:
- Education Grants are available to cover tuition fees related to a recognized Early Childhood Education diploma.
- Travel Grants are available to assist Education Grant recipients with daily commute expenses & accommodations incurred to attend classes or to complete the placement component of their program.
- A training allowance is automatically assessed in order to assist education grant recipients with living expenses and other incremental costs incurred while pursuing their Early Childhood Education diploma.
Do I have to work for a minimum period of time within an eligible agency before I can apply for financial assistance under the Early Childhood Educators Qualifications Upgrade program?
Yes. You must work within an eligible agency in Ontario for at least 6 months before you are eligible to apply for financial assistance. The eligible agencies are as follows:
- Licensed home-or centre-based child care agency
- Publicly funded schools
- Private Schools
- Other formal early learning child care, child and family programs, or curriculum linked school programming
NOTE: Francophones and individuals working at an EarlyON Child and Family Centre or employed in a child care and family program funded under Indigenous-led Child and Family centers are exempted from the required 6 months of employment.
What if I changed employers, will the program consider my total employment period within eligible agencies for the purpose of the 6 month eligibility period?
Yes. The total period of time that you have been employed within eligible agencies in Ontario will be considered toward the 6 month eligibility period.
Do I need to work a minimum amount of hours in order to be eligible?
No. Financial assistance is available to employees working in an eligible agency.
Do you accept e-mailed applications?
Yes. Emailed, faxed, and mailed, applications are accepted. We now have the option to submit an online application directly on our website.
Can I receive reimbursement for previously completed semesters in the Early Childhood Education program?
No. Funding is not available once the semester is completed.
What if I can't pay my tuition up front?
If you are unable to pay for your tuition to the College you can select the Sponsorship option on the application form and your tuition fees will be paid directly to the college.
If you have already paid your tuition or deposit amount to the College you must submit your proof of payment within your application
Will the program consider courses offered at colleges outside of Ontario?
No. Funding is only offered for programs within Ontario.
Are the fees related to apprenticeship training eligible under this program?
Only General Education/ Elective courses under the Apprenticeship Program are eligible for funding under the Early Childhood Educators Qualifications Upgrade program. Since the cost of Apprenticeship courses are already reduced by the Ministry of Training Colleges and Universities we cannot provide any further funding for those specific courses.
Are university programs in the field of Early Childhood Education or other related college programs eligible for financial assistance?
No. Only the Early Childhood Education diploma program from a recognized community college in Ontario is eligible.
Is the Early Childhood Education diploma offered through Mothercraft eligible under this program?
Yes. This diploma is eligible for financial assistance.
If I want to apply for credit towards my diploma through the Prior Learning Assessment and Recognition (PLAR) process, can I apply for financial assistance towards the related fees?
No. PLAR fees are not eligible for financial assistance under the Early Childhood Educators Qualifications Upgrade program.
Can I terminate my employment in order to return to school in an approved program?
Yes, as long as you meet the eligibility criteria. Please review the application checklist for details regarding this process.
The application for travel grant asks me for the name of the agency where I will complete my placement/practicum. What if I don’t have this information at the time of application?
If the information regarding your placement/practicum is not known and you wish to apply for a travel grant related to expenses incurred to attend classes, you should submit your application as soon as possible. You can submit your application for the travel grant with your placement information at a later date. It is important to remember that expenses incurred prior to receiving approval from the Program Administrator will not be eligible for reimbursement. It generally takes approximately 4 weeks to process an application once all the required information has been submitted.
What happens if I’m approved for financial assistance?
A letter is sent to you by mail when your application has been approved by the Program Administrator. The letter is accompanied by a Grant Assistance Agreement which specifies the terms and conditions for the provision of financial assistance, as well as a Confirmation of Payment Instruction form so that you can receive payment through direct deposit. After you have signed the agreement, you will return all of the documents to the Program Administrator and a copy will be returned to you for your records, once finalized.
How is my Education Grant calculated?
The education grant is based on your tuition fees, minus any other grants or awards; excluding loans.
When can I expect to receive my grant payments?
Payments are only deposited once the program administrator receives your signed Grant Assistance Agreement. The Grant Program issues payments on the last day of every month. Supporting documents must therefore be received by our office no later than the 20th of any given month in order for your grant payment to be issued at the end of that same month.
Is the grant funding taxable?
The grants issued through this program may be taxable. Grant recipients will be issued a T4A slip at the end of every calendar year in which they received payment.
What happens if I’m approved for a grant and then I withdraw, fail or do not complete my studies?
Once you are approved for funding, you are responsible for ensuring that you meet all academic requirements to continue in and successfully complete your funded course(s) and or program. You must advise the Program Administrator of any incomplete courses, and you will be required to repay the education grant, as well as any travel grant and or training allowance received for the course(s). Please be advised that withdrawal, deferment or late fees are not eligible expenses and are therefore the student’s responsibility.
What is considered full-time studies?
To be eligible to receive funding for full-time studies, you must be considered a full-time student by your educational institution, and you must carry at least a 60% course load during the semester.
What happens if I receive full-time funding and receive course exemptions during the semester?
If you receive one or more course exemptions during the semester in which you are receiving funding, you must inform the grant Program Administrator immediately. If your course load drops below 60%, you will may be considered a part-time student and may be required to repay any education grant, travel grant and or training allowance received for the exempt course(s).
Where can I go to get more information about the Early Childhood Educators Qualifications Upgrade program?
Additional information on the Early Childhood Educators Qualifications Upgrade program is available by calling the toll free number, at 1-866-989-9299.
Still Have a Question?
Simply use the form below and submit your inquiry to our email. We will be happy to get back to you in a timely manner.