Offaly County Childcare Committee -   057 9135878

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Triple P - Fear Less Talk

Dr Vanessa Cobham, will  deliver a presentation for parents of children/teens aged 6 – 14 years who experience anxiety, this is part of Fear-Less Triple P.

The presentation is planned for 19:30 – 21:00,  on Thursday 11th October in the Radisson Hotel Athlone and is open to all parents, please click on poster below to view in full.

Fearless Triple P

ECCE 2018 Higher Capitation - FAQ

Please be advised that ECCE 2018 Higher Capitation application forms will be made live for services on the PIP Portal from Friday 28/09/2018. PobalLogo

For any services who wish to apply for ECCE 2018 Higher Capitation, we will advise they log into their PIP portal and navigate to the My Services Tab and select Higher Capitation Application towards the bottom of the screen.

Please see the attached Frequently Asked Questions should you receive any queries surrounding the process.

Once we have received an application, it will be appraised and Higher Capitation may be awarded based on the outcome of this appraisal. Successful applications will receive their Higher Capitation payments on the subsequent ECCE payment run, and all Higher Capitation payments will be back dated to the applicable start date.

Guide to Early Years Education Focused Inspection – Now available

The Inspectorate of the Department of Education and Skills (DES) works to improve the quality of learning for children and young people in Irish schools, centres for education, early A guide to early years education inspectionyears settings providing State funded early childhood care and education for children from 2 years 8 months until they enrol in primary school and other learning settings.

Recently the Guide to Early Years Education Focused Inspection was updated and it outlines how inspections in early years settings are conducted and is effective from 1 September 2018.

It replaces the previous Guide to Early Years Education Focused Inspection (EYEI) in Early years Settings Participating in the Early Childhood Care and Education (ECCE) Programme (2016). It was developed in light of the experience inspecting early years settings since April 2016 and following consultation with stakeholders and partners involved in the development and delivery of high quality early childhood education and care in Ireland.

Please click on the link to access the guide Guide to Early Years Education Focused Inspection

Minister Zappone announces supports for quality improvements in the childcare sector, including €1.2m First Aid training fund

Minister Zappone announces supports for quality improvements in the childcare sector, including €1.2m First Aid training fund19875672 1337059526348124 484620879276509836 n

· €1.2m funding to provide first aid training for every registered childcare service in the country.
· Certain childminders to be supported to register with Tusla with new training bursary.
· Nine additional Tusla Early Years Inspectors to be recruited. Eligibility broadened to include graduates in early years for the first time.
· Tusla launches new Quality and Regulatory Framework to strengthen consistency in inspections of childcare services.

Wednesday 5th September 2018

Minister for Children and Youth Affairs Dr Katherine Zappone today announced a range of measures to improve the quality of childcare delivered to children across the country in setting based services and with childminders.

Funding is to be made available to provide one free place (worth €250) on a First Aid Response training course for every registered childcare service, in a move that will cost €1.2m over a two year period. The funding will also be available to an estimated 250 childminders who are not yet registered.

Minister Zappone has also announced the introduction of a post-award bursary to support childminders who obtain a relevant NFQ Level 5 qualification, which is a requirement for childminders to register with Tusla. Further actions to support childminders will be announced before the end of the year in a childminding action plan which will assist with up skilling and quality assurance.

In addition, Minister Zappone has announced that Tusla is opening a recruitment campaign for nine new Early Years Inspectors, to strengthen the capacity of the Tusla Inspectorate. Historically, Inspectors could only be Public Health Nurses but this has been reformed to open these posts to individuals from a wider range of disciplines, including graduates from early years care and education programmes.

Speaking of the announcements, Minister Zappone said:

“We cannot rest when it comes to the quality of care and education we deliver to our youngest children. We know that high quality experiences provided at this young age can have a massively positive impact on the lives and future outcomes of our youngest children. I am delighted to be launching these further measures; each of which will combine to maintain our progress in building and delivering the best quality childcare system here in Ireland.”

Minister Zappone made the announcements on these new quality measures as Tusla launched a new Quality and Regulatory Framework (QRF), which is intended to improve the consistency of inspection of childcare services across the country. The QRF was developed by Tusla in consultation with childcare providers and parents and covers the areas of governance; health, welfare and development of the Child; safety; and the standard of premises and facilities.

Inspection reports now being published on the Tusla website

Tusla Early Years Inspectorate has announced that they are now publishing inspection reports on the Tusla website, and they are no longer available on the Pobal website.24 Tusla Prevention Partnership

It is important to note that only Inspection reports arising from inspection under the Childcare Act (Early Years Services) Regulations 2016, which commenced on 30th June 2016, will be published. In cases where a service has not yet had an inspection under the 2016 Regulations, then the next most recent report will be published.

The process of uploading the reports is ongoing and will be complete at the end of July 2018. At that point each registered service will have a published report..

Click to access the inspection reports.

Contract awarded to deliver IT system for the Affordable Childcare Scheme

Another major milestone achieved in the creation of a new scheme of entitlements for parents towards the cost of childcaredcyalogo
System reflects new frontier of innovative, joined-up and user-friendly public services

Monday 9th July, 2018

The Minister today (6th July 2018) awarded a contract for the development of the IT system to support the introduction of the Affordable Childcare Scheme. The contract has been awarded to Codec, an Irish company with global reach, which was successful following a rigorous public procurement process.

Awarding the contract, the Minister noted:

"Last Monday, President Michael D Higgins signed the Childcare Support Act 2018 into law, providing the legal basis for the new Affordable Childcare Scheme. Today the contract for the scheme's IT system will be signed. This is certainly a momentous seven days for childcare-bookended by major progress as we put both the legal platform and the IT platform in place for this new scheme. Block by block we are building a solid foundation for a scheme which will help to transform our childcare system from one of the most expensive in the world to one of the best, and which should help generations of families to come.

I know the burden that childcare costs can be for families. Access to quality, affordable childcare can transform the situation of many families and that is why I am unwavering in my commitment to increasing investment in childcare."

Once launched, the Affordable Childcare Scheme will provide financial support to help reduce the cost of childcare for parents. Through this financial support, the scheme aims to improve access; assist families to return to work and training; reduce child poverty; and improve outcomes for children.

The IT system is a central element of the new Affordable Childcare Scheme as it will allow people to apply online for a childcare subsidy and, in the vast majority of cases, be automatically assessed and approved in a timely, user-friendly way, without any need to collect, collate and submit documentary evidence. As such, it is intended to support busy parents to access the support they need in the easiest possible way.

The system will be developed by Codec, working in close collaboration with the Department of Children and Youth Affairs and Pobal, who will act as the scheme administrator.

Childcare Support Bill is passed by the Oireachtas

Minister for Children and Youth Affairs, Dr Katherine Zappone,
“delighted to introduce the first ever legislation on childcare support for families”.

For the first time, families to enjoy a clear, legal entitlement to financial support for childcare.

Tuesday 26th June 2018

19875672 1337059526348124 484620879276509836 n

The legislation establishing the new Affordable Childcare Scheme- the Childcare Support Bill- completed its passage through the Houses of the Oireachtas this evening, and is expected to be enacted in the coming days.

The groundbreaking legislation is a first. For the first time ever, childcare support is enshrined in primary legislation. There will be a clear legal entitlement to financial support for childcare costs, benefiting generations of families to come. The Childcare Support Bill 2017 was published in December and has received widespread, cross-party support as it travelled through the Houses of the Oireachtas.

Once launched, the Affordable Childcare Scheme will provide financial support to help reduce the cost of childcare for parents. Through this financial support, the scheme aims to improve access; assist families to return to work and training; reduce child poverty; and improve outcomes for children.

“I believe everyone is aware of the importance of delivering accessible, affordable, quality childcare to families in Ireland. It is a key priority of this government and will require sustained investment and momentum over the coming years to achieve the childcare system that families in Ireland both need and deserve,” commented Minister Zappone.

“In establishing the Affordable Childcare Scheme, the Bill creates a platform with the ability to flex and expand to allow more children and families to benefit from greater State investment in childcare in the years ahead. In short, it is an essential foundation for my pledge to transform our childcare system from one of the most expensive in the world to one of the best. We cannot make that step-change without it.”

The development of the administrative and IT infrastructure for the new scheme is well under way. Minister Zappone will outline timescales for the launch of the scheme once the external IT developer is fully in place.

In the meantime, there is continued growth in the number of children who have benefited from the childcare supports put in place in September 2017 to lower the cost of childcare for families. The families of more than 76,000 children have already benefited from such supports since last September.

Parents interested in knowing more about their childcare entitlements should go to


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