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  1. #1
    Euphoric !
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    Going rate for before and after school care in Toronto?

    Hi, I am opening in Jan and will be offering strictly B&A as I test the waters etc as a new daycare. I am also hoping to offer priority to kindergartners (the school is full day for them) as they would be closer in age to my eldestcdaughter and it will make things easier for programming etc.

    I have been looking for the average B&A rate for Toronto. Entering my postal code in Daycare Bear etc has led me to believe the rate is $25 per day. In mentioning this to another provider they scrunched their face (made me think it was too low not too high) but I didn't have the guts to ask what she charges as she didn't offer. I live across the road from the school I will be offering care for (I can see the Kindergarten door from my front porch). The school charges $28 per day but they have a 3-4 yr wait list. Also, providers in my area mostly offer full time care and B&A is hard to find.

    What does everyone think would be a good fee? The going rate in my area for full day home day care is $55-60. I have heard halving the day rate is normal. Could I charge the same as the school since they have such long wait list?

  2. #2
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    Why not try an ad for $ 30 and see if you get any bites? Great advantage being right across from the school!!!! Much easier to lower your rate if you don't get any interest than to try and raise it!

  3. #3
    Euphoric ! Inspired by Reggio's Avatar
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    Hmmm hard call ... I personally think home childcare providers should be able to charge more simply because we have a LOWER RATIO and more personalized service as a result so what the client is getting has more value in many ways ... but centres and schools have always charged more because they are perceived to have more expenses even though those expenses might not really add value to the end users experience ~ at least IMO

    The schools charge $28 a day but the person caring for those kids has 15 children to care for at a time so their revenue on that program is $420 a DAY and sorry but there is now way it costs $420 a day to staff and fund that program cause they do not even provide snacks or anything ~ whomever runs the program makes a nice profit off that program which admitted if the program is run by a non profit organization is than often used to offset the loss in infant and toddler programs those same organizations offer in their centres but still there is a huge mark up in their fees that is not directly related to the SERVICE the client is getting.

    Flip side if you do the MATH on our end and you charged $28 a day for your program X 5 children under 10 you can legally have that is a whopping $140 MAX a day you make in your program ... and most home providers provide a snack and other program expenses out of that fee as well so lets argue $40 a day in expenses... lets say you are open 3 hours before and 3 hours after school for clients ... so you are working 6 hours a day as well as add an average of 2 hours a day for program prep, cleaning of the toys and playroom, shopping for program supplies and 'office work' to keep your business records up to date, advertizing, tours and interviewing to keep your spaces filled and so forth all those hours add up maybe no everyday but averaged over the year it works out to about 2 a day and honestly likely more ... so 8 hours a day with $100 left after expenses you would be making $12.5/hour on average an hour assuming you are ALWAYS full which is not typically the case so on average you would be making minimum wage ... if you charge LESS than $28 than you are making LESS than minimum wage to do this with all the responsibility and liability this job entails!

    Sadly IME most clients do not want to pay a home childcare provider the SAME as they would a licensed school or centre program because they do not view the value the same way we might and think that home childcare should be 'cheaper' not realizing that results in us making less than minimum wage to give them a better service than in a centre or school
    Children construct their own intelligence. The adult must provide activities and context, but most of all must be able to listen. Children need proof that adults believe in them. Their three great desires are to be listened to, to understand, and to demonstrate that they are exactly what we expect."
    Loris Malaguzzi

  4. #4
    Euphoric ! bright sparks's Avatar
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    I think that what a school charges for before and after school care they can justify based on the fact that parents think it is education based being in a school. I think also not each program is created equally. There are plenty of b&A programs which offer snacks and have smaller ratios depending on funding, resources and space amongst other things. They can also typically have more resources and learning materials and age apropriate toys for a variety of ages which may be somewhat problematic in a homedaycare, unless you either want to spend a lot of money investing in them, have older children yourself who can hand down or share toys, or you plan to be very strickt in only accepting children in a specific age group and at a specific learning stage.

    I know from personal experience that if the YMCA are running the program within the school, which is a common program across Ontario, they typically have 2-3 staff at any given time and that would be for a group of 15-20 kids, but these children are older, not kindergarten age so the ratios are different, and they neither require as much one on one care or want it like kindergarten kids. My kids were in a program like this and they followed themes, were provided drinks and snacks and the staff were trained and qualified ECE's. Now as it was a small school, only 130 students, everybody new everyone so you really got to know the people working within the program, and they also had an open door policy so parents could come early and observe without giving prior notice which is also a good thing for parents if they want to see the program in action without the fear of it being a "staged presentation" or an untrue reprisentation. They also had the use of the school playground and outdoor play equipment which was an added plus. While I'm not in Toronto, I'm still in the golden horseshoe and it cost me $11 per day versus a home daycare which is around $20-$25 in my area. Whether the above comments are relevant or not to a parents reasoning for in school care or not, or even if they aren't truly like this behind the scenes in a lot of facilities, I do believe that they give the parent more security, even if it is false, when making the choice. Even the simplest of questions when choosing care is, regulated(school) vs unregulated(home daycare). So many parents don't do enough research or comparisons, they may simply decide based on this alone.

    What I would say is of a huge benefit in your situation, is that you live across the road. There is no issue with transporting the children in a vehicle which some parents have an issue with, so this is a huge incentive and also the fact that your program is dedicated to B&A care rather than having for example, 3 full time 2 yr olds and then an additional 2 school age kids, which is more work as you are catering to mulitple needs, and developmental stages. Having 1 dedicated B&A programs means you can make your program much more efficient and effective. I would advertise in the school on their noticeboard and even leave some business cards with the receptionist as they can sometimes be the first stop when new parents to the school want to be given information on before and after school care. I personally wouldn't price myself higher than the school but definitly comparible. As long as you can justify it by the program you provide, then I don't think you should have any problems with parents.

    Good Luck, I'm sure you will do great and once you are at capacity, you will no doubt have a waiting list also. You can always raise your rate in the future if necessairy.

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