400 families in Waregem lose half a day of childcare every week

400 families in Waregem lose half a day of childcare every week

The non-profit organization Kindercentrum in Waregem has five nurseries. Eighteen children per living group is the maximum, says the Growing Up Agency after an inspection.

Maximum occupancy

Until now there were sometimes more, and that was necessary, because a maximum occupancy is required for financing, the shelter says.

“If you know that we have an average absence of 15 to 20 percent on an annual basis, that means that some days 3 to 4 children are absent. Then you need days when 2, 3 or 4 more children are present in childcare But we agree that a living group with more than 18 children is not good for guaranteeing pedagogical quality,” says Tom Braet of vzw Kindercentrum.

Now the daycare will lose funding. They want Flanders to review subsidies.

Dealing with shortages

In the meantime, the city must do more to tackle the shortage of personnel and places in childcare, says Simon Wemels, who is part of the opposition party Groen in Waregem.

“This is now a very large organizer who has this problem. It affects a lot of families. I think it is wise to spread the forces a bit, and to look for other organizers who can make an additional offer” says Simon.

The matter will be before the city council on Tuesday. The city of Waregem says it is working hard on the problem, so it is already organizing temporary emergency shelter.