If the strike by the B.C. Teachers Federation stretches into September, parents of some students will be paid by the government, but not right away.
The provinceâ€™s Ministry of Finance announced earlier this summer that parents of school-age children younger than 13 will receive $40 per child for each day that their kids are out of school.
The program has been dubbed Temporary Education Support for Parents.
Online forms will be available in September, according to bcparentinfo.ca, a government site set up for the program.
Parents and other primary caregivers will have to fill out a form, and paper forms will also be available.
There will be no money forthcoming until up to two months after the strike ends, so parents will have to deal with all child care costs, extra tutoring, or other expenses up front.
The payments wonâ€™t be processed until after the month in which the strike ends. The payments are expected to be processed and cheques sent out within the following month.
Students entering kindergarten, or who are new to the B.C. public system, will have to be confirmed as enrolled.
Parents will be able to register up to four months after the strike ends.
The measure has been criticized by groups such as the B.C. Confederation of Parent Advisory Councils.
The BCCPAC said in a recent press release that it expects the strike to end, schools to open Sept. 2, and for teachers and government continue working with mediator Vince Ready on a settlement.
BCCPAC wants more classroom resources, through a special fund that could allow for extra supports where needed. The funding should be allocated based on collaboration with students and teachers, rather than based on quotas, the organization said.
The amount to be spent on the support program is about $12 million a day, the same amount the government is saving with schools closed.
For more information on the governmentâ€™s support program, call 604-660-2421, or on Telephone Device for the Deaf at 604-775-0303.