Infant Care in Singapore – Overview

For infants aged between 2 months and 18 months

An infant care programme primarily focuses on routine care tasks, rituals and play. The care-giving aspect underlying these routine tasks, rituals and play constitutes an important part of an infant curriculum. The interaction and relationships between the infant and the care-giver during the routine care tasks and rituals foster the infant’s/toddler’s learning and development.

Note: If you are looking for Full Day Child Care Options, we have put together a general preschool infographic guide for you to understand more about preschools in Singapore.

Infant Care Enrolment Statistic Singapore

Year 2012 2013 2014 2015 May – 16
Total no. of child care centres offering infant care service 296 327 364 419 449
Total no. of infant care places 4,722 5,257 5,628 6,262 6,689
Total enrolment 2,604 3,015 3,506 3,813 4,118
Enrolment in full-day programme 2,510 2,902 3,392 3,735 4,042

Infant Care Fees In Singapore

Year 2012 2013 2014 2015 May – 16
Average full-day fees $1,325 $1,376 $1,411 $1,452 $1,466
Median full-day fees $1,271 $1,311 $1,311 $1,343 $1,357

Key Statistics For Infant Care In Singapore

  • There are about 30% of the Child care centres provide infant care services cater to children aged between 2 months to 18 months. These centres usually offer full day and half-day care programme for the infants.
  • For infant care, the area that you require is five square metres per child and in the case of pre-schools, it’s three square metres to a child. So you require a sufficiently big area. This is basically for safety reasons. In the case of emergency, it’s easier for mobility. (Source: ECDA)
  • Of the 1,276 childcare centres in Singapore, only 393 offer infant care services. As of May 2015, there are 393 child care centres that provide Infant Care service. (Source: ECDA)
  • 96 of the 124 My First Skool centres across Singapore offer infant care.
  • Of the 177 childcare centres managed by the PAP Community Foundation, 109 offer infant care services.
  • Sengkang has the high the highest number of Infant Care enrolment followed by Bedok (Source: ECDA)
  • Sengkang has 31 Infant care Centres, the highest among all the areas (Source: ECDA)
  • By end of 2016, the number of Infant Care Centres is estimated to reach 450.
  • The average fees of a full-day Infant Care Programme is about $1445 [May 2015] (Source: ECDA)
  • From July 2017, the Public Service will provide an additional 4 weeks of unpaid infant care leave per parent, to be taken within the child’s first year.
  • The Government announced plans during the Budget in February 2017 to increase the capacity of centre-based infant care to more than 8,000 places by 2020. About 1,000 more infant carers will be recruited to support these expansion plans. (Source:Singapore Budget 2017)

Infant Care Subsidies & Schemes Available

As of May 2015, Singaporean parents spent at least $1,445 on average on full-day infant care fees. However, infant care fees should not burn a hole in your pocket.

To help make infant and child care services more affordable for lower- and middle-income families, there are subsidies and schemes that have been made available to help you and your spouse along so there is nothing to worry about.

Let’s take a closer look at the assistance you may be qualified for.

Singaporean children enrolled in child care centres licensed by ECDA are automatically eligible for a Basic Subsidy of up to $600 for infant care.

Moreover, families with monthly household incomes of $7,500 and below are now eligible for an Additional Subsidy, with lower income families receiving more. Larger families with many dependents can also choose to have their Additional Subsidy computed on a per capita income (PCI) basis. (Source: MSF)

To qualify for the infant care subsidy, the infant must be a Singapore Citizen aged 2 to 18 months.

Additional Infant Care Subsidy/Subsidies Information

For full day infant care program, a basic subsidy of $600 is given to Singapore citizens children, whose mother/single father works a minimum of 56 hours per month. Non-working mothers/single fathers will be given a subsidy of $150.

For half day infant care program, a basic subsidy of $300 is given to Singapore citizens children, whose mother/single father works a minimum of 56 hours per month. Non-working mothers/single fathers will be given a subsidy of $150.

Singapore Citizen children whose mother/single father works a minimum of 56 hours per month and gross family household income is $7,500 or Per Capita Income of $1,875 and below per month are also eligible to apply for Additional Subsidy.

Full day :
Singaporean working mother : $600
Singaporean non-working mother : $150

Half day :
Singaporean working mother : $300
Singaporean non-working mother : $150

Additional Subsidy:
Singaporean working mother: subject to approval and varies based on gross family household income

Children Development Co-Savings (Baby Bonus) Scheme

The Baby Bonus Child Development Account (CDA) is a co-savings scheme for children, where the Government, up to a specified ceiling, matches savings deposited by parents into a special savings account called the CDA dollar-for-dollar. (Source: MSF)

CDA savings funds can be used for child development needs at Approved Institutions registered with the Ministry of Social and Family Development (MSF). Approved uses of CDA funds include the following:

  • Fees for child care centres, kindergartens, special education schools and early intervention programmes
  • Medical expenses at healthcare institutions such as hospitals and GP clinics
  • Premiums for MediShield or Medisave-approved private integrated plans
  • Assistive devices
  • Eye-related products and services at optical shops
  • Approved healthcare items at pharmacies

Infant Care Pros and Cons

  • [Pros] Certified & Trained professionals in child rearing
  • [Pros] Childcare Subsidies are given for working mothers
  • [Pros] Proper meals prepared by the infant care everyday
  • [Cons] Falling sick easily because exposed to virus spreading around e.g.: HFMD, flu, cough, etc
  • [Cons] Needing to take urgent leave when baby is unwell or infant care gets quarantined
  • [Cons] Rushing back and forth to work (penalty will be imposed for late pick-ups)

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