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New operator sought for District of Sicamous-owned day care

Eagle Valley Community Support Society not renewing contract
Eagle Valley Community Support Society executive director Janet McClean Senft and childcare centre manager Penny Deeter show off the inside of the new Little Bears Child Care Centre in Sicamous on Wednesday, Feb. 3, 2021. (Jim Elliot/Eagle Valley News)

A new operator is being sought for a day-care facility owned by the District of Sicamous.

On Friday morning, Oct. 28, the district announced the Eagle Valley Community Support Society (EVCSS), which has run the Little Bears Child Care Program for nearly two years, will not be renewing its contract with the district to operate the childcare facility at 502 Cedar St.

“The district is grateful for its partnership with EVCSS,” said Mayor Terry Rysz in a district media release. “On behalf of council, I would like to thank the program’s early childhood educators, the EVCSS board of directors and their executive director, Janet McClean Senft. These individuals have supported local families and helped turn a council strategic priority into a reality.”

According to the district, the society has determined the time and focus needed to navigate the growing industry of licensed child care – working with the province, education institutions, employment services, Early Childhood Educators of BC and others – and the ongoing commitment to recruit and support the education of childhood workers, is best suited to an operator whose only mandate is the provision of child care.

“EVCSS is grateful for the opportunity to have partnered with the District of Sicamous,” said Senft. “Child care is an important part of supporting families – we will continue to act as a partner to all the providers of early years education and care programs, and will continue to develop our early years services to serve families well.”

In the coming weeks, the district will issue a request for proposals to recruit a new operator, and will be working closely with EVCSS to ensure a smooth transition.

In 2020, the district received $848,000 in funding through the Community Child Care Space Creation Program to establish a community daycare. The facility is currently licensed for children aged three to five.

Read more: New childcare centre opening soon in Sicamous

Read more: Sicamous mayor’s debate provides insight into workings of council, sour relations with CSRD
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Lachlan Labere

About the Author: Lachlan Labere

Editor of the Salmon Arm Observer, Shuswap Market, and Eagle Valley News. I'm always looking for new and exciting ways to keep our readers informed and engaged.
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