The Benefits of Licensed Childcare

Unlicensed or Informal Care

What is

Quality Care?

Questions to Ask Your Care Provider

District of SSM Website


Your licensed childcare resource for Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario.

apply online

or call 705-759-7748

or visit us at 180 Brock Street, 2nd floor

The Benefits of Licensed Child Care


  • Regulated & Inspected by the Ministry of Education
  • Children are with other children their age
  • Staff members include professionals with training in

      early childhood education

  • The centre has to meet certain standards of care
  • Activities are designed for children at their different

      stages of development

  • For licensed home child care agencies,

      siblings can be placed together

  • Flexible hours may be available
  • Providers are trained and monitored
  • A child care fee subsidy may be available

Unlicensed or Informal Child Care


Unlicensed child care includes private arrangements made between the parents and the caregiver either in the caregiver's home or in the child's own home. This means parents have the sole responsibility for assessing the quality of the child care, managing the relationship with the care provider and are own their own in finding a new provider should circumstances change.


In Ontario, caregivers who look after five or fewer unrelated children under the age of 13 do not have to be licensed.


Unregulated child care operators are not monitored by the Ministry of Education. The person caring for your child may not be trained in First-Aid and CPR, may not have a criminal background check and may not be following Health & Safety standards.

What is Quality in Early Childhood Education & Care?

High Quality Licensed Child Care programs that provide positive experiences to support the development of young children include the following characteristics:


  • Employ staff who are Registered Early Childhood Educators
  • Encourage family participation
  • Provide age-appropriate activities and materials that promote healthy development, exploration and creativity
  • Foster warm and caring relationships between children and staff that promote a sense of belonging and social engagement
  • Offer an inclusive environment
  • Deliver programming that supports language and communication
  • Have small group sizes and high child-to-staff-ratios
  • Provide a safe and healthy environment

apply online

or call 705-759-7748

or visit us at 180 Brock Street, 2nd floor