Connexions Resource Centre
80 Daniel-Johnson St, Gatineau, QC
819-777-3206 •

Daycare Services for Children with Special Needs

Quebec has established its own unique approach to daycare for children 0-4, with subsidized and recognized Child Care Centres (CPEs) and Family Day Homes where spaces are offered at reduced contribution for infants through school-age children.

Two ministries regulate, oversee and administer child care programs. The Ministère de la Famille et des Aînés (MFA) is responsible for services for children 0-4 years and the Ministère de l’Éducation et de l’Enseignement supérieur is responsible for services for school-aged children and is also responsible for kindergarten.

The cost of childcare at a RECOGNIZED daycare is based on a formula calculated under the reduced contribution program.

For an explanation of daycare options in Québec, please visit the Ministère de la Famille et des Aînés (MFA) and Finding Quality Child Care: A Guide for Families in Canada.

Daycare Services for Children with Disabilities

PDF Document

Quebec’s curriculum framework suggests that childcare establishments welcome children with special needs.  To support this initiative, the government provides a one-time grant and a daily amount per child in addition to the regular operating grants for centres that include children with a disability. There is also an additional assistance measure put in place for the inclusion of children with a significant disability.

The conditions of eligibility for this allowance depends on confirmation of the child’s disability by a professional recognized by the Ministère de la Famille et des Aînés or in a statement from the Régie des rentes du Québec to the effect that a supplementary family allowance is being granted to the parents.

In Recognized Childcare Centres, the maximum number of children with disabilities considered for the supplementary allowance is nine (9); it must never exceed 20% of the spaces allowed on the permit, annualized.  For more information, the MFA has published the General Information on the Inclusion of Children with Special Needs in the CPE, which provides information and procedures for daycares to integrate a child with special needs.

In Family Day Homes Recognized by a Home Childcare Coordinating Office, the maximum number of children with disabilities eligible for the supplementary allowance is one (1) per home childcare provider. An exception may be made when the provider receives more than one disabled child from the same family.

The purpose of these norms is to maintain an appropriate environment for the child with a disability to integrate and develop his/her ability to adapt and be autonomous, in preparation for future stages of life in society.

PLEASE NOTE:  The MESRS offers a subsidy for children and youth with special needs to attend private preschools.  Please visit our Financial Support for Families with Children with Special Needs for more information about this and other subsidies and grants.

Pavillon du Parc’s Daycare Companion for a Child with an Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) or an Intellectual Impairment (II) 

Pavillon du Parc offers two Intervention Programs for children with an ASD or II within the daycare setting.  The Intensive Early Intervention Program (IEIP) for children with an Intellectual Impairment and the Intensive Behavioural Intervention Program (IBIP) for children with an ASD aims to provide services that are personalized, intensive, interdisciplinary and inclusive by providing an Assistive Service, also known as a Daycare Companion or Shadow, to accompany the child within the daycare setting.

The Companion is charged with implementing the Programs educational strategies and harmonizing these within the daycare setting while closely collaborating with Pavillon du Parc, the family and the daycare with the end intent of stimulating the child’s development, as well as strengthening the child’s capacity for adaptation, provide different communication, social skill and behaviour templates, and prepare the child for their transition to the school system.

Finding child care

The Quebec government portal page provides information in English for parents on a variety of issues including child care.

The Childcare Establishment Locator allows parents to search for regulated child care by region, name, and proximity to home or work address. Search results display whether or not the child care centre or home offers a subsidized program, spaces for infants, and even provides a link to inspection reports.

Finding Educational Child Care for Your Child provides a list of questions for parents to ask prospective providers over the telephone as well as guidelines for what to look for when visiting a centre (French Only).