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ETFO celebrates Child Care Worker and Early Childhood Educator Appreciation Day

October 18, 2022

Today, on Child Care Worker and Early Childhood Educator Appreciation Day, the Elementary Teachers’ Federation of Ontario (ETFO) joins Ontarians in recognizing and celebrating child care workers and designated early childhood educators (DECEs) for their exceptional contributions to the development, success and well-being of children.


“Every day, DECEs demonstrate their expertise and care as part of educator teams in Full-Day Kindergarten (FDK) classrooms across the province. They play a critical role in supporting the well-being and holistic development of children, and are valued partners who work alongside teachers to ensure every early learner gets a great start,” says ETFO President Karen Brown. “To deliver the quality of care and learning Ontario’s youngest students deserve, respect for early childhood educators is essential. Today, and every day, we recognize and celebrate their efforts.”


FDK has been shown to provide lasting benefits for children’s reading, writing, numeracy, self-regulation, and social skill development. This is, in large part, due to the play-based learning expertise and leadership of DECEs. ETFO remains a champion and advocate of the FDK program, which is universally accessible and provides an equitable start to school for every learner in the province. ETFO strongly believes FDK is an investment in human potential that the provincial government should continue to support.


In February 2021, ETFO released a report, researched and written by Dr. Gordon Cleveland. The report, Ontario’s Kindergarten Program: A Success Story – How We All Benefit from Quality Public Full-Day Kindergarten, can be found here.  


ETFO represents approximately 83,000 members, including public elementary teachers, occasional teachers, designated early childhood educators, education support personnel, and professional support personnel. Visit