Early Childhood Services (ECS) includes Kindergarten and educational programming
The first 6 years of a child’s life are important to their development and future education. Children who are cared for and have positive experiences during the early years are more likely to develop and learn in ways that help them meet their full potential.
Lifelong learning begins the moment we are born. The first 6 years of our lives are a time of unparalleled discovery. We learn about ourselves and the world around us. Our personalities take shape and we begin to lay the foundation of knowledge that will support us as we enter the education system.
Services, supports and programs for young children and their families are primarily provided by 4 areas of the Government of Alberta: Alberta Education, Alberta Community and Social Services, Alberta Children’s Services and Alberta Health.
Alberta Education is responsible for Early Childhood Services (ECS). ECS are educational programs for children under the age of 6 and includes Kindergarten, the year before Grade One and educational programming for children as young as 2 years 8 months.
Alberta Community and Social Services provides Family Support for Children with Disabilities, while Alberta Children’s Services is responsible for Parent Link Centres, Child Care and Licensed Preschool. These supports are provided in partnership with communities through programs offered by Family and Community Support Services.
Alberta Health provides primary and preventative health care from the prenatal stage, through the early years and into adolescence and adulthood.
The 4 ministries work together to plan for and deliver the many early childhood programs, supports and services needed to support young children and their families.