Preschool fees as a childcare expense?

A client is sending her 4-year-old daughter to preschool. She is in Alberta. Can the fees paid be claimed as a childcare expense? I am unable to find anything on the CRA website about this specific situation.


I am not sure if there is a federal mandate for childcare. It is normally a provincial matter and depending on the province the deductions are different. In my province (Quebec) preschool for 4+ years olds is part of the primary school. Only a small part of the expenses for which the institution issues a tax slip can be claimed.

One of the criteria considered as child care expense, is that the child needs to attend an educational program that has to be offered by a secondary school, college, university, or other designated educational institution. This includes any institution certified by the Minister of Employment and Social Development Canada for courses that develop or improve occupational skills. An eligible program has to last at least three consecutive weeks.

In short, yes, but it must meet the mentioned criteria.

To further GWPG’s comment: and the preschool should provide a receipt in prescribed form with the prescribed information included.(As a former Treasurer for an indie school that offered a preschool program we did exactly this.)