(CMR) The Ministry of Education, Youth, Sports, Agriculture and Lands (MEYSAL) has approved an increase in funding for students in the Early Childhood Assistance Programme (ECAP).
The fund increase will support those parents of children in the programme and who have been negatively impacted by the pandemic.
ECAP provides financial assistance to parents/guardians of Caymanian children who turn three years old before 1 September and who meet the means testing requirements.
This financial assistance is to cover or aid payment of ECCE enrollment fees.
“The intention is to provide young children with the opportunity to receive a strong educational foundation. In addition, these children will be able to consistently pursue their Early Childhood Education without undue financial stress on their parents. Parents will also have access to a wider variety of ECCEs, thereon increasing the likelihood of placing their child in an environment that best meets their child’s needs. Early childhood education is integral to the holistic development of a child's social, emotional, cognitive and physical needs in order to build a solid and broad foundation for lifelong learning and wellbeing,” explained the Minister for Education, Juliana O’Connor-Connolly.
Prior to the recent increase in funding eligible parents could apply for basic or supplemental monthly funding to pay ECCE enrollment fees. This funding has now been increased from $450 to $500 for supplementary funding and from $275 to $305 for basic funding.