Offaly County Childcare Committee -   057 9135878

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Welcome to Offaly County Childcare Committee

Our site is packed with information so whether you're a parent, working with children, interested in a childcare career or just browsing, this is the place for you!

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

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Child Protection Refresher - 16th February is CANCELLED

Please note the Child Protection Refresher training has been cancelled due to low numbers.  Both the refreshers due to take place in March and April are filling up fast.  

For further information on Child Protection training please contact Sheena on 057 9135878.

Minister Zappone publishes Heads of Bill on new Affordable Childcare Scheme

dcyalogoAffordable quality childcare is another step closer as Minister for Children and Youth Affairs, Dr Katherine Zappone today(30th January 2017) published Heads of Bill and General Scheme to allow for a radical new approach.

The Affordable Childcare Scheme, which was announced as part of Budget 2017, aims to make childcare more accessible for families, by providing universal subsidies for all children under 3 and targeted subsidies, based on net parental income, for children up to 15 years.

Announcing the publication, Minister Zappone said, “Our timelines and goals are ambitious to turn Irish childcare around from being one of the most expensive in the world to the best – however we continue to make steady progress.

I know that parents who face costly childcare, and those who simply cannot afford it, are carefully watching our progress. Their needs and the needs of children lie at the very centre of our proposals.  We are working hard to ensure the legislation and the IT infrastructure are in place and that full information on the scheme will be available in good time.”

Chair of the Oireachtas Committee on Children and Youth Affairs, Jim Daly TD, added:“This is a further demonstration of the commitment of this Government to assist working class people to cope with the costs of raising a family. This scheme will provide payments of up to €1000 per year for families at all income levels, with higher rates of subsidy for families with lower incomes, and will greatly ease the burden on parents.

I look forward to its speedy passage through the Oireachtas and will continue to work closely with Minister Zappone and her officials to ensure every assistance is provided to parents who are struggling with child care costs.”

Work will now commence on turning the Heads of Bill into legislation, which the Government has prioritised with a view to having the legislation enacted prior to the opening of the scheme later this year.

Click on the links below for the Heads of Bill along with Questins and Answers.

Affordable Childcare Scheme - Heads of Bill and General Scheme

Q & A on the Affordable Childcare Scheme

Over 100,000 Children now in free childcare 95% of eligible children availing of scheme

The Minister for Children and Youth Affairs, Dr Katherine Zappone is confirming that the numbers in the free pre-school scheme has passed 100,000 for the first dcyalogotime.

108,019 three and four year olds now head off to preschools, crèches or community services to join playmates and to be cared for on a regular basis.

This number will grow further as registrations for January are still being processed and a further intake is due in April.

This figure represents a rise from 68,333 in 2014/15 and follows a major expansion which extended the Early Childhood Care and Education (ECCE) scheme to three-year olds last September.

Confirmation of the figures comes as preparations are continuing for the roll out of a radical new approach to childcare to bring Ireland into line with the international norm.

Minister Zappone added:

“The demand for accessible, affordable, quality childcare right across Ireland is now clear.

The increase in uptake is testament to the success of the ECCE scheme in meeting the needs of families with 95% of eligible children participating.

The pre-school services on offer are an integral part of growth and development, a key phase of childrens’ lives in the same way as primary and secondary school.

I am committed to building on this success to deliver childcare for everyone.

For too many families costs are a burden that is too much to bear and that is wrong.

We are continuing our ambitious plans to lift those barriers which are preventing parents from availing of training, education and work opportunities to lift their families out of poverty.

The development of the Affordable Childcare Scheme in 2017 will be a major breakthrough for families – it will ensure everyone is treated equally.

By correcting years of under investment we will move Ireland from having one of the most expensive childcare systems in the world to having the best.

Preparations for our new single, streamlined and user-friendly scheme are continuing and I look forward to bringing legislative proposals to cabinet very soon.”

Officials are currently making preparations for the introduction of the new scheme, which will involve enacting legislation and developing a major new IT infrastructure to ensure the scheme allows online applications for parents.

See  Here for statememnt and Supplemental notes

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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