Gould expands on the details of the Canada Learning Bond - $2000 is available through an RESP.

News 100 yellowBy Staff

February 22, 2018



Earlier this week a very pregnant Karina Gould stood before an audience and talked about the cost of an education and how the government was going to help.

Gould - baby + work comment

Karina Gould: “I will be working until the day I go into labour”.

A few days prior Gould told a CBC reporter that she would be “working until she goes into labour” and returning to the House of Commons as soon as possible.

Expect to see her in the House with the child snuggling up against her chest – perhaps even being fed. The country has never seen anything like this before.

Gould, the youngest female Cabinet minister in the country’s history, is not only doing her job as Minister of Democratic Institutions – she is alto filling in for her colleagues – she has delivered statement for two ministers recently.

Gould told the audience at The Centre for Skills Training and Development in Burlington that when “more people can afford post-secondary education, our economy can grow and our middle class can thrive. That is why the Government of Canada is helping more low- and middle-income families save money for their children’s post-secondary education through the Canada Learning Bond.”

That bond can provide as much as $2,000 that gets put into a Registered Education Savings Plan (RESP) for children from low‑income families, with no personal contribution required. This includes $500 for the first year of eligibility and $100 each following year, until the calendar year they turn 15.

The federal government has reallocated $12.5 million over six years, starting in 2017–18, from Employment and Social Development Canada’s existing resources to launch a pilot project. The pilot project will explore new ways to increase awareness and access to the Canada Learning Bond.

Budget 2017 approved amendments to the Canada Education Savings Act to allow the cohabiting spouse or common-law partner of the primary caregiver to request the Canada Learning Bond and the Additional Canada Education Savings Grant on behalf of an eligible child. This change will simplify the application process, ensuring that more children who are eligible for these benefits receive the support they need to help pursue post-secondary education.

Lisa Rizatto - The Centre’s CAO,

Lisa Rizzato, Chief Administrative Officer, The Centre for Skills Development & Training

Lisa Rizzato, Chief Administrative Officer, The Centre for Skills Development & Training told the audience that: “Funds from the Canada Learning Bond can be used by young students for future expenses related to their studies including trades schools and apprenticeship programs such as those offered in the Centre’s skilled trades pre-apprenticeship programs.

Support for young people, whether they are studying or working, would not be possible without our local representatives in parliament and federal government, and we’re proud to work with them to improve the lives of citizens in our community.”

While take-up of the Canada Learning Bond has steadily increased from 0.2 percent in 2005 to 34.7 percent in 2016, two thirds of eligible children are not yet receiving this education savings incentive, representing approximately 1.8 million children across Canada.

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4 comments to Gould expands on the details of the Canada Learning Bond – $2000 is available through an RESP.

  • Stephen White

    In principle a good program and a worthwhile idea, but with some obvious flaws.

    First, no mention of what constitutes a “low income household”. After a few internet searches I found the answer, and it is based on the number of children per household. If you have one child the maximum threshold is $45,916, and it increases up to 8 children at $75,472. However, there are many two income families in this country who are earning more and still struggling to help their children pay for tuition and educational expenses. You could have someone with three children in college or university with an annual household income of $150K and they would be in as difficult a position financially as someone with one child earning $40K. Where is their support network?

    Second issue. There is no connection between education and employment. If we are going to meaningfully address the problem of income inequality and employment in this country then we need to prescriptively steer young people in the direction of educational programs with realistic and strong potential for post-graduation employment. Apprenticeship training is fine, but we should also be directing young people into training and educational programs in the information technology sector where huge skills shortages are anticipated. While I appreciate post-secondary education is valuable in and of itself a three year Classics degree isn’t going to lead to meaningful employment prospects much beyond Starbucks.

    The federal government has lots of great ideas and good intentions but like so many things it undertakes (e.g. tax reform for small businesses) the problems are in the details.

  • Frank Smith

    Absolutelty right on Susie!

  • Susie

    I guess my question is why do we have low and middle income families? We yearly add more than 250,000 to our population, and with any thought process put forward in how costly it is to live here, only tells me this is a huge tax undertaking to all citizens that are barely staying above the line now. I, for one, was raised in the far North with no secondary education, let alone post-secondary education and no government funding to subsidize an education. When married, we only had the number of children that we could afford to house, clothe, feed and educate, and in doing so often had three jobs. Never once did we accept assistance but learnt to be very frugal. Not sure that word exists in society today, and perhaps money put to an education in learning how to do such, would be very beneficial now and for future generations. Free hand outs are becoming the norm, but comes at a cost to us all, and certainly not fair to those limiting their life styles to not be, a low or middle income family.

  • Mr.Bean

    What did the Federal government do with our tax credits for children taking music lessons?