Children's Services is designated as the City's "child care service system manager" under provincial legislation and as such has responsibility for planning and managing a broad range of child care services. These child care services include fee subsidy, wage subsidy, family resource centres, special needs resourcing and summer day camps. In addition to its service management responsibilities for child care, the Children's Services also directly operates over 50 child care sites.
The Children's Services Division also has lead responsibility for supporting the City's broader children's strategy by managing special projects, initiatives and events such as Raising the Village.
Toronto Children's Services promotes access to high quality early learning, child care and supports for families through a well-planned and managed system.
All families in Toronto benefit from a range of services that promote healthy child development and family well-being.
Children's Services is committed to the promotion and delivery of quality child care. The maintenance and continued improvement of quality care demands the recognition of an underlying philosophy upon which high standards in curriculum programming can be developed.
The philosophy espoused by Children's Services is reflective of the adopted principles and values. Children are seen as active participants in their environments, and are by nature problem-solvers. Learning then is an active process whereby the opportunity to explore and interact with the environment are key components in a child's growth and development. Underlying this is the assumption that a child's growth follows a developmental sequence that is universal, but that within that sequence, each child proceeds at different rates and in unique ways.
The programming is reflective of the need to provide stimulating and developmentally appropriate challenges for the individual child in a warm, secure environment. Staff commitment to planned programming is a fundamental necessity in ensuring quality care. The role of the teacher is that of facilitator; to provide kinds of experiences that promote active learning on the part of the child. Through the combination of planned programming, staff commitment and continued training, Children's Services can provide consistent, high quality care to best meet the needs of the active, continually developing child.