Standing Strong Together

ECE Education Support Fund

New Online Education Support Fund (Bursary) Application System Has Now Launched!
Find out more below.

Since September 2018, the Early Childhood Educators of BC (ECEBC), in partnership with the Province of British Columbia, enhanced and expanded the ECE Bursary Program, now known as the ECE Education Support Fund (ECE ESF).

This program consists of two funding streams:

  1. The Early Childhood Education (ECE) Student Bursary Program; and
  2. The ECE Workforce Development Bursary Fund Program

These funding streams are designed to increase the number of students entering, re-establishing and graduating from recognized ECE post-secondary programs. For a list of post-secondary education ECE programs recognized by the Early Childhood Educator (ECE) Registry, please click here.

Early childhood educator with a puppet and a child with a book

Impact & Latest Announcements

ECE Education Support Fund (Bursary) Portal Announcement


Online Portal for Early Childhood Education (ECE) Students

Are you a new or current ECE student in BC – check this out !!

We are excited to announce the launch of the ECE Education Support Fund Online Portal – create your profile today !

The new online portal was created to support students to apply for bursary funding in a more efficient and user-friendly way.

If you are applying for funding for the Winter 2023 semester (for courses that end between January 1st and April 30th) the portal is now available for you to complete your student profile and to begin your application for the Winter 2023 intake which opens at 7am on March 20th 2023. Please use the button below to access the portal.

ECE Education Support Fund (Bursary) Portal Information Sessions

Thursday March 16th  2023 – 7pm - 9pm
registration required

ECEBC and the Government of British Columbia understand how important these bursaries are for students who are planning the next steps in their education or career.

Together with the Province, we are working to support as many students as possible. Bursaries will be available to students enrolled in a program of study for Early Childhood Education in Ministry approved post-secondary institutions.

with priority going to:

  1. Students who self-identify as Indigenous (First Nations, Métis, Inuit)

The remaining applications will be processed on a first come, first served basis, time stamped within the new system. Funding will be distributed upon proof of course completion through the submission of a transcript following the end of the semester. Please note only domestic students are eligible to receive bursaries.

Please note: Winter 2023 semester

  • Application submissions will be open from 7am on March 20th 2023, and close at 11:59pm on April 3rd 2023.
  • Approved applicants will be informed by email when processing is completed.
  • Transcripts showing completed courses must be uploaded to your online profile by 11:59pm on May 15th 2023.
  • Transcripts received after this time/date will not be accepted.

For support, please contact the bursary team at or call 604 709 6063 ext. 1

As of October 2019, the fund was fully expended. The original investment of $11.9 million provided more than 5,400 bursaries to students pursuing their ECE education goals.

In December 2019, an additional $4 million from the Canada-B.C. Early Learning and Child Care Agreement was invested into the ECE ESF to help more British Columbians obtain or upgrade their Early Childhood Educator (ECE) certificate. These funds will provide bursaries to a limited intake of eligible students under new funding parameters available in the ECE Education Support Fund Application Guide.

Bursary Streams

Students who are currently working may apply for the ECE Student Bursary or the ECE Workforce Bursary Development Fund, provided they are working in a licensed child care program or a StrongStart BC program. However, applicants who qualify for both streams may only apply to one or the other. Applicants may switch between the two streams provided the applications are for different semesters. 

If you are unclear what stream you qualify for please contact

ECE Student Bursary

This funding is to support students studying in an ECE program at a recognized post-secondary institution. Eligible applicants can apply for up to $500 per course, to a maximum of 8 courses, for a total of $4,000 per semester to assist with tuition while studying. Awarded amounts will be dependent on the number of completed courses. For instance, in the event an applicant enrolled in five courses, but only successfully completed three, the final payment will only reflect the three completed courses.

ECE Workforce Bursary

This funding is to support ECEs, ECE Assistants, Responsible Adults (as defined in the Child Care Licensing Regulation) and StrongStart BC Facilitators who are currently working in the ECE field and would like to upgrade their credentials. Applicants must be able to demonstrate active employment within a licensed child care facility (with the exception of StrongStart BC facilitators). Awards may range in amounts up to $5,000 per semester to assist with tuition and other expenses such as loss of wages or travel.

Eligibility Criteria & Application Process

Eligibility Criteria

The ECE Education Support Fund is open to domestic students who are residents of British Columbia and who are studying for an ECE credential, including:

  • ECE Basic certificate;
  • ECE Post - Basic certificates (Infant & Toddler and/or Special Needs);
  • ECE Diploma; and,
  • ECE Bachelor.

Application Process

  1. Student registers in post-secondary program.
  2. Student applies to ECEBC for bursary funding.
  3. Student is approved for bursary funding.
  4. Student successfully completes coursework or practicum.
  5. Student provides transcript from post-secondary institution
  6. Bursary funding is provided by ECEBC to successful applicants.

BC Government Supports for Early Childhood Professionals

Latest ECE Education Support Fund News

Archived: Summer 2022 Bursary Information & Application Forms Online

May 6, 2022

The Summer 2022 ECE bursary information and application forms are now available. Find out more about the bursary instructions and the ‘Bursary Basics’ meeting occurring on Wednesday, May 18th, 2022 on the Education Support Fund page.

Education Support Fund

Archived: Winter 2022 Bursary Information Now Available

Dec 20, 2021

The Winter 2022 ECE bursary information and application forms are now available. Find out more about the bursary instructions and bursary support webinar occurring on Wednesday, January 12th, 2022 on the Education Support Fund page.

Education Support Fund

Archived: Fall 2021 Bursary Information Now Available!

Oct 13, 2021

The Fall 2021 ECE bursary information and application forms are now available. Find out more about the bursary instructions and bursary support webinar occurring on Oct. 21, 2021 on the Education Support Fund page.

Education Support Fund

Archived: Funding Available for ECE Students - Summer 2021 Semester

May 31, 2021

Applications will soon be accepted for the Summer 2021 semester of the Early Childhood Educator Education Support Fund (Bursary).

Find out more