With six campuses spread across British Columbia’s northern interior and a system-wide enrolment of approximately 5,000 students, the College of New Caledonia (CNC) is a popular post-secondary educational institution for post-secondary students.
With early childhood educators being sorely needed throughout the province, a new announcement by the CNC was made to ultimately put families at ease when it comes to their children’s education providers.
Students in northern B.C. who plan to, or already attend, the College of New Caledonia (CNC) will soon have access to training to become early childhood educators.
This announcement comes as part of an expansion of the early childhood education program at the CNC.
“When we give students the skills they need to enter a rewarding career in early childhood education, we are helping to nurture the future of our province,” said Melanie Mark, the Minister of Advanced Education, Skills and Training. “The expansion of the program … at the College of New Caledonia gives students access to a career with better employment prospects, children a strong start and families peace of mind that their children are being cared for by qualified care providers.”
The Government of British Columbia is investing $109,000 into the College of New Caledonia to help the institution add 12 new seats to the September 2018 intake of its Early Childhood Care and Learning program.
“Most of a child’s brain development happens in the first six years of life and that’s why it’s so important to give children access to quality early learning experiences,” said Katrine Conroy, the Minister of Children and Family Development.
“As a former early childhood educator, I know first-hand the difference that early childhood educators make in the lives of the children they look after and the families they serve,” said Conroy. “These additional early childhood educator spaces at the College of New Caledonia are much needed for B.C. families and will help contribute to the success of our Childcare BC plan.”
According to information listed in the 2017 Labour Market Outlook, the province will require an additional 9,100 early childhood educators by 2027.
Over the next decade, it is paramount that the training quality early childhood educators is a priority, as it ensures that B.C. children will have the access to strong early care and learning programs in the multitude of communities, like Fort St. James, throughout the province.
“As a college, CNC has the ability to respond to labour market and training needs with relevant educational programming,” said Henry Reiser, president of the College of New Caledonia. “We’re thrilled for the investment in early childhood education at CNC. It’s an investment in our students, the children they care for and the communities we serve.”
The College of New Caledonia in Vanderhoof is part of the larger CNC – Lakes Nechako Region. Serving students. The regional campuses serve 10 communities of varying sizes with a total population of over 16,000 in a geographical area extending from Takla Lake to the north, Saik’uz to the south, Bednesti to the east and Stellat’en to the west.
With so many B.C. parents facing difficulties when it comes to finding quality child care, the Province has put forth a $1-billion investment over three years to help lay the foundation for a universal child care system.
Ultimately, Childcare BC outlines that this system will provide parents across the province — especially those in rural communities — with access to affordable childcare whenever it is required.
The aforementioned funding for the program expansion at College of New Caledonia is part of a $7.4 million investment by the Ministry of Advanced Education, Skills and Training over three years.
This commitment is expected to fund an additional 620 childhood educator graduates at public-post-secondary institutions across British Columbia.