Offaly County Childcare Committee -   057 9135878

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Offaly County Childcare Committee is located at St Joseph's Community Centre in Kilcormac, Co Offaly.

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Taoiseach and Minister for Children and Youth Affairs Katherine Zappone TD host event marking launch of National Childcare Scheme

Taoiseach and Minister for Children and Youth Affairs Katherine Zappone TD host event marking launch of National Childcare Scheme
Published: 11 December 2019
From: Department of Children and Youth Affairs

National Childcare Scheme Logo

 

 

 

 

 

 The Minister for Children and Youth Affairs Dr Katherine Zappone TD has today marked the opening of the National Childcare Scheme (NCS) for online applications with the Taoiseach, Leo Varadkar TD.

The National Childcare Scheme opened for online applications on Wednesday 20 November 2019.

Acknowledging this achievement, Minister Zappone stated:

“This is a landmark moment for children and families in Ireland. Through the National Childcare Scheme, families have the first ever statutory entitlement to financial support towards the cost of childcare. The Scheme is our pathway to quality, accessible, affordable early learning and care and school age childcare.”

Using a verified MyGovID account, families can apply directly for subsidies at www.ncs.gov.ie . Subsidies can then be used with any participating, Tusla registered, early learning and cae and school age childcare service, including Tusla registered childminders. The Scheme’s innovative, purpose-built IT system aims to process a universal application in a matter of minutes, and an income assessed application in a matter of days.

On the application process, Minister Zappone noted:

“This is a highly innovative and ambitious Scheme and I am delighted that the initial volume of applications has been high. As of yesterday, nearly 12,000 applications, relating to over 17,000 children, had already been successfully submitted, and over 8,000 awards had been made to parents. There are a range of helpful resources for families on the NCS website, and we have extended the opening hours of the National Childcare Scheme Parent Support Centre from 8.00pm to 6.00pm Monday to Saturday. We would ask parents and providers to please bear with us if there are any slight delays in the early days.”  The Minister was joined by the Taoiseach, Leo Varadkar TD.

Speaking at the event, the Taoiseach said:

“The new National Childcare Scheme is about giving our children the best start in life. It’s an investment in making life easier for families, better outcomes for children, and helping to make Ireland one of the best countries in which to grow up and raise a family.

“Families with young children have a lot of pressures – and among these is access to quality childcare that is affordable. The National Childcare Scheme increases the number of families who can access financial assistance. Many families will, for the first time, be entitled to subsidies. Many others will see increases in their subsidies.

“As a government our mission over the past two-and-a-half years has been to develop better work-life balance, for example, bringing in better parental leave, paternity benefit, paid parental leave and early childhood education. As we all know correcting decades of under-investment will take some time, but it is happening. Next year we will spend €624 million on childcare. Today over 175,000 children across our country are benefitting from government childcare initiatives.”

Under the National Childcare Scheme, families will be supported to meet the cost of quality early learning and care and school age childcare through a system of universal and income-related subsides. Additional funding provided under Budget 2019 ensures that an estimated 7,500 additional children will benefit from the Scheme, with over 40,000 other children, already eligible, seeing increases to their subsidies. Income based subsidies are available to families with reckonable household incomes of up to €60,000 which can translate into as much as over €90,000 gross for families in certain specific circumstances.

The National Childcare Scheme is paving the way for Ireland’s childcare system to transform from one of the most expensive in the world into one of the best.

Further information and resources for parents are available at www.ncs.gov.ie.

Christmas 2019 Payments Arrangements​

Christmas 2019 Payments Arrangements​ PobalLogo

ECCE

The ECCE payment schedule has been structured to ensure that services receive 4 weeks’ payments in advance, this takes into account standard non-payment weeks such as Christmas, Easter, Halloween.

On 22/11/19 services received a payment up to the 27/12/19 (a 5-week period); for most services this was 4 weeks in advance (there is one non-payable (wb 23/12/19) included in this period).

It has been agreed with DCYA to make an additional payment on 20/12/19 to pay services which will be open in the week beginning 30/12/19.

Higher Capitation: an additional preliminary payment will be made on 20/12/19 to services that have made applications prior to 06/12/19 and have not been approved or declined. The payment will cover entitlement from beginning of the programme year to 27/12/19 (adjusted for any existing pre-payments).
Because of the bank holiday, the first payment in 2020 to cover the 4-week period to 31/01/20 will be made on 08/01/20.

SAVERS

The CCSP/TEC payment schedules have been structured to ensure that services normally receive 2 weeks’ payments in advance.

CCSP

There were two payments scheduled at the end of the year:
06/12/19 - payment up to 20/12/19 (a 2-week payment)
13/12/19 - payment to cover week from 23/12/19 to 27/12/19
It has been agreed with DCYA that the payment to be made on 13/12/19 will now be calculated up to 03/01/20 (a 2-week payment).

Because of the bank holiday, the first payment in 2020 to cover the 2-week period to 17/01/20 will be made on 08/01/20.

TEC
There is one payment scheduled at the end of the year:
13/12/19 - payment up to 10/01/20 (a 4-week payment)
This payment will remain as is.

The first payment in 2020 will made on 10/01/20 to cover the 2-week period to 24/01/20.

NCS

Service Providers will need to submit an attendance return between 23:00hrs on Sunday night 22/12/19 to midnight Wednesday 25/12/19 in order to get paid for previous week registrations (week ending Sunday 22/12/19).

If services are closed (with a full closed paid week entered on their calendar) and are unable to submit the attendance return for week ending 22/12/19 and week ending 29/12/19, they have the option to request a bridging provision when submitting the return for week ending 15/12/19.

Because of Christmas bank holidays, returns submitted Sunday 22/12/19 to Wednesday 25/12/19 cannot be processed for payment until 27/12/19 and will be in service providers’ bank accounts on Monday 30/12/19.

Returns submitted 29/12/19 to 01/01/20 will be paid as normal on Friday 03/01/20.

CPD Payments

​CPD Payments will be issued to all services for participants who completed Hanen, Lámh and/or NSAI trainings between the 1st of September and the 30th of November on Friday the 13th ofPobalLogo
December.

Please note that each staff member can avail of a maximum of 18 hours of paid CPD training per calendar year and payments are calculated on this basis. Payments for all participants will be made to the employer/ childcare setting and NOT to the individual. Re-imbursement by way of payment or time worked is the responsibility of the employer.

The rate of payment is €13 per hour.
If you have any queries regarding your payments; please contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 01-5117222

National Childcare Scheme (NCS) Attendance Returns

National Childcare Scheme (NCS) Attendance ReturnsPobalLogo

The National Childcare Scheme was launched on Wednesday, 20th November and many of you will now be submitting returns on a weekly basis. Below are some useful reminders regarding returns:

Returns must be submitted on a weekly basis for all children attending your service who are registered for the National Childcare Scheme.
Returns for the previous week will become available for submission on the Early Years Hive each Sunday at 23.30 and need to be successfully submitted by the following Wednesday at 23.30 in order for payments to reach your registered bank account by the following Friday.

Any returns submitted outside of this timeframe will subsequently be processed the following week as a result.
Please see the Returns quick guide on the Early Years Hive for assistance on how to submit a return.

Two new attendance tracker tools have also been added to the Programme Information section of the Early Years Hive; a 5-day version and a 7-day version. It is not a requirement for service providers to use these tools, however, you may find them helpful for keeping accurate attendance records for the children attending your service.

If you need any further clarification, please contact your local CCC or the Early Years Provider Centre on 01 511 7222 / This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Pilot initiative of arts bursaries for Early Years Services

Minister Zappone announces pilot initiative of arts bursaries for early years services 19875672 1337059526348124 484620879276509836 n
Published: 27 November 2019
From: Department of Children and Youth Affairs

  • Pilot initiative will be delivered through four arts and cultural organisations working with Early Learning and Care and School Age Childcare services
  • This investment in arts and culture is a pilot initiative of the Department of Children and Youth Affairs (DCYA) under Creative Ireland, in collaboration with the Arts Council.

The Minister for Children and Youth Affairs, Dr Katherine Zappone, is delighted to announce a number of arts bursaries that will be delivered through four arts and cultural organisations working with Early Learning and Care and School Age Childcare services.

The projects, which were chosen through a competitive tendering process, are:

  • ReCreate will provide free access to their arts and crafts supplies service for 175 School Age Childcare Services across the country.
  • The Ark Cultural Centre for Children will provide three, two month long, artist in residencies in Early Learning and Care services.
  • Graffiti Theatre will connect artists with 9 settings for children under 3 years old.
  • Children’s Books Ireland will engage with 50 Early Learning and Care services, providing them with books and resources to encourage reading and play.

Announcing the bursaries at an Early Years Forum today, Minister Zappone said:  “Through this pilot programme of bursaries, a number of Early Learning and Care and School-Age Childcare settings will be able to access age-appropriate arts and cultural experiences for the children they serve. The process itself, and the experience of the services and of the children, will be evaluated and the learning will be shared. I look forward to hearing about their experiences.

Supporting Quality Childcare in Offaly

Offaly County Childcare Committee support the development of quality, affordable, inclusive, accessible childcare and family friendly services for all children in every part of the county.

Offaly County Childcare Committee has been meeting since May 2001 and is made up of representatives from the statutory sector, social partners, community groups, voluntary groups, the Community and Voluntary Forum, National Voluntary Children's Organisations, providers of childcare, and parents - all of whom have a vested interest in childcare provision in the county.

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