The organizations which run supervised, subsidized daycares under the Labor and Welfare Ministry on Monday submitted an action plan to deal with the daycare crisis, Maariv reported.
The plan, submitted hours before Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu announced that the daycares would be transferred from the Labor and Welfare Ministry to the Education Ministry, includes raising daycare workers' salaries, providing continued professional training to allow for career development, opportunities for promotion, and incentives.
Salaries and working conditions for daycare workers would be made equivalent to those of preschool assistants (6350 NIS, or $1779), and the staff-child ratios will be reduced by hiring an additional daycare worker for each group. Regular substitute workers would allow staff to take a day off each week.
The plan would also require an additional budget of 1 million NIS ($280,220) per year would be required for each daycare center, the site noted.
The crisis, which began last year when the organizations running supervised daycares announced a strike, resurfaced four months ago. According to a Maariv report at the time, some of the understandings reached at the beginning of the 2018-2019 school year were never implemented.
Liora Minka, who chairs the Emunah organization, told Maariv: "In the past decade, a crisis has developed in the field of early childcare. On the one hand there is a growing shortage of providers and a high turnover rate. On the other hand there is a deficit caused by lack of budget, which grows every year and exacerbates the existing crisis. At our request, an interoffice committee was formed, including representatives from the Prime Minister's office, Finance Ministry, and Labor and Welfare Ministry. We showed this committee a document containing a working plan and recommendations for rehabilitation and solving the daycare crisis existing today in Israel."
Dr. Naomi Morano, who heads WIZO's early childhood department, told Maariv: "The supervised organizations requested to draft a road map for the government in order to create the high-quality human and other resources necessary to take care of babies from birth to three years. We have the knowledge, experience, and willingness to provide solutions for all parts of the young children's population. There is no reason parents of young children should not enjoy supervised daycares at a subsidized price."
Under the plan, instead of the current 1:6 staff-child ratio for babies under 15 months, the ratio would be reduced to 1:4.5. From 16-24 months, the ratios would be reduced from 1:9 to 1.6.75, and children ages 25 months to 36 months would be in groups with a staff-child ratio of 1:8.25 instead of 1:11.