Child Care Fee Subsidy

Child Care Fee Subsidy

How to qualify and apply for Child Care Fee Subsidy


Child care fee subsidy is a program that is intended to help families with the cost of their child care expenses. It supports eligible families by paying a portion of their total licensed child care costs as funding permits.

Fee subsidy offers an essential support for many families, helping them balance the demands of a career and family while working, pursuing education or participating in a training program.


Child Care Subsidy may be available to families living in the District of Nipissing who are looking to access licensed Child Care Centre-Based or Home Child Care (for children newborn to 12 years of age) as well as Approved Recreation Programs (for children 6-12 years of age).

In order to qualify for Child Care Subsidy you need to:

  • Be a resident of the District of Nipissing
  • Be the child’s parent, legal guardian, temporary or kinship parent
  • The child must live in the same residence
  • File a Federal Tax Return on an annual basis
  • Have a demonstrated need for early learning and child care services
    • by attending school or professional training
    • working full-time, part-time, on call or casual
    • having a Special Needs Referral provided by a third party agency, a doctor or other professional who is currently working with you or your child.

If you would like to see an estimate of your monthly or daily parental contribution, click on the button below to open the Fee Subsidy Estimate Calculator.

Parent Contribution Estimate



educator sitting on the floor with young children clapping hands


You can apply for child care fee subsidy online through our Fee Subsidy On-Line Application Form (OLAF) by clicking the ‘Apply Now’ button below.  In order to better support families, please apply prior to securing a licensed child care or authorized recreation space to determine your eligibility.

If you are deemed eligible for Fee Subsidy, your child(ren) will be placed on the subsidy list.  Once you have secured a licensed space, contact us and your application will be finalized.  Please note that the final processing of the application may require an updated income test, based on the latest Notice of Assessment (NOA) information.

If you prefer to apply over the telephone, you can call (705) 474-2151 ext. 15558.

Apply Now


If you have further questions, you can contact our Children's Services Representative team at (705) 474-2151 ext. 15558 or email


If you are on Ontario Works, you might be able to get other benefits and subsidies to help care for a child.


Common questions about Child Care Fee Subsidy

Fee subsidy offers an essential support for many families, helping them balance the demands of a career and family while working, pursuing education or participating in a training program. Here are some common questions about child care subsidy.

In order to be eligible for child care subsidy, each parent must complete an income tax return every year. Eligibility for fee subsidy is based on the family’s net income, shown on line 236 of your most recent Revenue Canada Notice of Assessment. The following table gives an example of the monthly amount that the family would have to contribute to child care costs.

If the actual child care costs exceed the parental contribution amount then you may be eligible for fee subsidy.

Net Family Income Approximate Monthly Cost per Family Approximate Daily Cost per Family
$ 20,000.00 $ 0 $ 0
$ 30,000.00 $ 83.33 $ 3.83
$ 40,000.00 $ 166.67 $ 7.66
$ 50,000.00 $ 416.67 $ 19.16
$ 60,000.00 $ 667.00 $ 30.67
$ 70,000.00 $ 916.67 $ 42.15
$ 80,000.00 $ 1,166.87 $ 53.65
$ 90,000.00 $ 1,416.58 $ 65.13
$ 100,000.00 $ 1,666.70 $ 76.63

Fee subsidies are available across a broad range of income levels. Families with an adjusted annual income of up to $20,000 are eligible for full fee subsidy and no calculation of a parental contribution is required.

For families with adjusted annual income above $20,000, the parental contribution is calculated based on 10% of their adjusted income over $20,000.

Adjusted Income  $ 23,000
Adjusted Income over 20,000  $    3,000
Parental Contribution (10%)  $        300
Monthly Parental Contribution (300 ÷ 12)  $          25


For families with adjusted annual income above $40,000, the parental contribution is calculated at 10% of the amount over $20,000 up to $40,000 plus 30% of the amount over $40,000.

Adjusted Income  $ 43,000
Adjusted Income over 20,000 up to 40,000  $  20,000
Parental Contribution Part 1 (10%)  $    2,000
Adjusted Income over 40,000  $    3,000
Parental Contribution Part 2 (30%)  $        900
Parental Contribution  $    2,900
Monthly Parental Contribution (2,900 ÷ 12)  $  241.67


The monthly parental contribution is calculated by dividing the annual parental contribution amount by 12.

The income test is designed such that parents pay the monthly parental contribution as calculated above in each month that their child(ren) need child care regardless of the number of days of child care per week.

The daily contribution amount is calculated using the following formula: (Monthly parental contribution) / (Days of care per week x 4.35)

For $ 23,000 adjusted income:  
Monthly Parental Contribution (300 ÷ 12)  $   25.00
5 days of care per week x 4.35       21.75 days
Daily Parental Contribution  $      1.15


For $ 43,000 adjusted income:  
Monthly Parental Contribution (2,900 ÷ 12)  $  241.67
5 days of care per week x 4.35        21.75 days
Daily Parental Contribution  $    11.11


Although children are expected to attend the Child Care centre in accordance with the approved hours and days of care, Children’s Services recognizes that planned and unforeseen absences will occur throughout the year.  The allotment of absent/vacation days is intended to support parents in meeting their child and family’s child care needs.

If child care fee subsidy is approved for a child enrolled in child care five (5) days per week to begin care in January, twenty-four (24) absent days are allocated for the year.  However, if child care begins during any other month (other than January) or if a child is enrolled less than five (5) days per week, the absent days allotted will be prorated.

Example of prorated circumstances:

  • If child care fee subsidy is approved for a child enrolled in child care five (5) days per week is approved for fee subsidy in the month of August, ten (10) absent days are allocated for the remainder of the year;
  • If child care fee subsidy is approved for a child enrolled in child care three (3) days per week, fourteen (14) absent days are allocated for the year;
  • If child care fee subsidy is approved for a child enrolled in child care for PD days and breaks, twelve (12) absent days are allocated for the year, or prorated based on month enrolled.

You must report changes to your Children’s Services Representative immediately to determine your continued ongoing eligibility for child care subsidy if your circumstances change for any reason, including, but not limited to the following:

  • Marital status or family size
  • Employment or schooling status (including change in hours of employment)
  • Enrolment in an educational program (including dropping or adding courses)
  • Changes in residence – if you move or change your phone number

Please note: You must file an income tax return each year, respond to all letters, and submit information by the deadline given.

If you will be experiencing a decrease in adjusted gross income (line 236 of your Notice of Assessment) of 20 percent or more within the calendar year, you may be eligible for a decrease in your child care contribution. Contact your Children’s Services Representative to determine if your decreased adjusted gross income impacts your assessed contribution amount.

If you fail to report any changes that may impact your child care subsidy, Children’s Services reserves the right to recover overpayments.  An overpayment is the difference between the amount of Fee Subsidy paid on behalf of the Applicant(s) less the amount that actually should have been paid according to their circumstances.

For further information regarding the Fee Subsidy Overpayments and Recoveries policy, please contact

Children’s Services has established a complaint resolution and appeal process to address complaints and disputes related to fee subsidy in order to provide services that are fair, equitable, transparent and addressed in a timely manner.  

Applicants should first discuss the concern with their Children’s Services Representative (CSR) in order that the decision can be explained in detail and/or seek a possible resolution to the dispute.  If there is not resolution, the Applicant must submit an appeal letter, signed and dated, to the attention of the Supervisor or designate, within ten (10) business days.   

Nipissing’s Child Care Registry is the easiest way to find early learning and child care programs throughout the District of Nipissing.  In order to find licensed child care program visit Nipissing’s Child Care Registry. This website provides a list of all the available licensed child care locations and programs providing services for children from infancy up to 12 years of age.

Once your name and contact information has been added to the Registry, a licensed child care provider will contact you as soon as a space becomes available.

The following documentation will be required to determine eligibility for child care fee subsidy:

  • Most recent Notice of Assessment or Canadian Child Benefit Notice; or most recent OW/ODSP statement
  • Confirmation – Reason for service (e.g. Employment, Education or Special Needs referral for child or parent)
  • Identification for each family member (Health Card and SIN not accepted)
  • Custody Agreement (if applicable)

Additional information may be requested by the CSR at the time of application, depending on individual circumstances (e.g. self-employed.)  

Eligibility will be determined once verification is completed by your CSR.  The time it takes to verify your application will be dependent on how quickly all of the required documentation is submitted to your CSR.  

On at least an annual basis, your child care subsidy file will be reviewed and you will be required to submit requested documents in order to determine your continued eligibility.

While receiving child care subsidy, your Children's Services Representative (CSR) will work with you to make sure you get the service and supports you need. If you still have unanswered questions, please contact your CSR.

Children’s Services is obligated, through the service agreement with the early learning and child care centre, to pay two weeks’ notice of child care fees from the date that services are no longer required, provided that another child is not waiting to fill the space you no longer require.

You are responsible to give two weeks’ notice to the child care centre and advise your Children’s Services Representative immediately should you no longer require child care services.

If your child has special needs, please have a health or social services professional complete the Special Needs Referral for Child Care Fee Subsidy form and send it to your Children's Services Representative.

Special Needs

How to get support for children and youth with special needs


DNSSAB provides funds to two local agencies to ensure that special needs resourcing services are available to children with special needs allowing them to attend and be included in licensed child care programs.   The Inclusion Support Program allows families to access licensed early learning and child care services and receive the supports and resources to assist both the family and the child care professionals.

Licensed child care programs are inclusive environments which welcome all children as full participants. Every licensed child care program in the District of Nipissing receives support services from a Special Needs Resource Consultant through the Inclusion Support Program.  These qualified professionals provide additional support needed so that every child can take part in the child care program.


Children may be referred to the fee subsidy program based on either a child’s special needs or a parent’s special needs.

Eligibility for fee subsidy with a special needs referral will be subject to the regular income testing guidelines.

The Special Needs Referral Form, which can be downloaded using the link below, must be completed by a third party social services professional.  Examples include Children’s Aid Society, Community Living North Bay, One Kids Place, etc.

Special Needs Referral Form


Common questions about children with special needs

Families with children with special needs face unique challenges accessing early learning and child care services that meet the needs of their children. Here are some answers to common questions we receive.

  • Regular visits to programs
  • Early identification and intervention
  • Individual consultation

Provide support to early learning and child care professionals to facilitate the full participation of an individual child requiring additional supports in order to ensure his/her success within the program.

Individual consultation is a collaboration between the SNR, family and the child care staff to support the development of individual program plans/goals, adaptations and teaching strategies for an individual child with extra support needs. SNRs can provide modeling and coaching to child care staff to help them develop their skills to work with individual children and by supporting the transition into care and service coordination. Resources can be provided and appropriate referrals for additional services specific to an individual child can be made, including referral for Enhanced Funds, Occupational Therapy or Behaviour Therapy Consultation Services. SNR staff will provide ongoing documentation of child’s progress and support given through progress reports and a written visit summary at the end of every visit.

  • Program consultation

Build the capacity of early learning and child care program to support the inclusion of children requiring additional supports.  Special Needs Resourcing Consultants can provide support and recommendations to the early learning and child care program through observations, environmental assessments and providing strategies for adaptations to meet the needs of every child in the program.

  • Suggestions for program adaptations
  • Professional Learning Opportunities

The Inclusion Support Program supports the training needs of the early learning and child care programs across the District in order to enhance knowledge and build capacity.  Special Needs Resource Consultants or other community special needs resourcing professionals can deliver professional learning opportunities to professionals working in early learning and child care settings on a variety of special needs issues to further broaden knowledge in specific areas.

  • Referrals
  • Support with service coordination
  • Enhanced Funding

Enhanced Funding are additional funds to provide short term enhanced staffing so that regular program staff can implement strategies to include children with extra support needs in the program. Enhanced staff does not count as part of the regular child care ratios.

Request for enhanced staffing can be arranged through the Special Needs Resourcing Agency providing services to your early learning and child care agency.

Parents are not required to pay more for extra staffing or support their child may need.

There are many other local programs and services to help children with special needs and their families. Please refer to this website for additional information to help support you and your family.


Please note: the information on this website is intended to be used as a guide and is subject to change. It does not reflect all policies and procedures of the Children’s Services Department.