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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NCS parental agreement – deadline

Dear Service Providers,National Childcare Scheme Logo

Minimum NCS subsidy increase

As previously communicated, from 2 January 2023, the minimum rate for NCS subsidies increased from €0.50 to €1.40. The increase, which was introduced by Minister Roderic O’Gorman as part of Budget 2023 measures, means that if parents are in receipt of a subsidy which was less than the maximum, they will receive a higher subsidy towards their childcare fees.

Service providers were not required to modify claims where the hours were remaining the same, this was done automatically. However, services were required to recalculate co-payment and issue new parental agreements to parents. To help with this, the Department of Children, Equality, Disability, Integration and Youth (DCEDIY) allowed a two-month window until 2 March 2023 to create and sign the new parental agreements. Services are required to have all updated parental agreements in place from 2 March or else they could be found non-compliant during compliance visits.

Parental Agreement

Pobal has developed a new semi-automated parental agreement on the Early Years Hive. This new feature is now available on the ‘Parental Agreement and Co-payment’ section of NCS claims on the NCS registrations page. Once you have calculated the co-payment for an NCS claim, the parental agreement will include all co-payment weekly amounts, the child’s name, the claim to and from date etc. and will be available to download and print from this page. Unfunded NCS closure date functionality has recently been added to the co-payment tool and the parental agreement is also editable.

Please see the how-to guide here for more information on the parental agreement.

Service providers may still use their existing agreement template if they prefer, there is no requirement to use this new version. General guidance on creating a parent agreement can be viewed on the Hive here.


AIM Level 5 Transfer of Ownership Webinar & Supports

Dear Service Provider, AIM Logo

The Transfer of Ownership process for AIM Level 5 equipment will commence on 8 March 2023.

As this is a new process on HIVE, training sessions have been organised via Webinar to provide service providers with a step-by-step guide to submitting a Transfer of Ownership and will include a Q & A section at the end. A How to Guide will also be made available on Hive before the Transfer of Ownership process commences. Please click on the relevant link for further information and to register your attendance:


Webinar link
Monday 27 February 18:30 – 19:30
Tuesday 28 February 10:00 – 11:00

Please note that the maximum number of participants per session is 500.

As per the AIM rules, section 7.20 “Pre-school providers and parent(s)/guardian(s) must engage with Pobal in relation to the transfer of ownership of equipment (including returning signed transfer of ownership forms, as appropriate).

Equipment provided under AIM Level 5 should not be removed from the pre-school until the transfer of ownership process is completed.

If you require any additional information or support, please submit a request through Hive using the following categories:

- Programme: AIM Level 5

- Request Type: Equipment

- Request Type Detail: Transfer of Ownership

Kind Regards,

The AIM Level 5 Team

Minister O’Gorman appoints Programme Board to oversee planning for a dedicated State Agency for Early Learning and Care (ELC) and School-Age Childcare (SAC)

Minister for Children, Equality, Disability, Integration and Youth, Roderic O’Gorman, today announced the appointment of a Programme Board to oversee the design and implementationagency board 22 02 2023 planning phase for a dedicated State agency for Early Learning and Care (ELC) and School-Age Childcare (SAC) in Ireland.

In March 2022 Government approved the findings of the independent Review of Early Learning and Care (ELC) and School Age Childcare (SAC) Operating System in Ireland which concluded that a dedicated State agency is the optimal operating model for ELC and SAC for the years ahead. This agency will be responsible for the functions currently undertaken by Pobal (Early Years), Better Start and the City/County Childcare Committees, as well as the operational functions currently undertaken by the Department of Children, Equality, Disability, Integration and Youth. This agency will support the delivery of accessible, affordable and high-quality ELC and SAC services for children and their families and the significant reform agenda for ELC and SAC committed to by Government.

The department has commenced a period of detailed analysis, planning, engagement and consultation in respect of this programme of reform, and this work will be overseen by a Programme Board.

The Programme Board is chaired by the Secretary General of the Department of Children, Equality, Disability, Integration and Youth and comprises the following members:

  • Kevin McCarthy (Chair), Secretary General of the Department of Children, Equality, Disability, Integration and Youth
  • Sylda Langford, former Director General of the Office of the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs
  • Michael Kelly, Former Chair of the Higher Education Authority and former Secretary General of the Department of Health
  • Professor Eva Lloyd OBE, Professor of Early Childhood in the School of Education and Communities and the Director of International Centre for the Study of the Mixed Economy of Childcare, University of East London
  • Pat McLoughlin, former CEO of the Alzheimer Society of Ireland
  • Representatives of the Department of Children, Equality, Disability, Integration and Youth, the Department of the Taoiseach, the Department of Rural and Community Development, the Department of Education, and the Office of the Government Chief Information Officer

The Programme Board will oversee the initial phase of this significant programme of reform which will entail examining all aspects of the creation of the new agency. The Programme Board will oversee a range of work stream groups and a programme management office, make recommendations on the key design and costing decisions throughout the project to ensure that this work progresses in a timely manner, and provide evidence-based recommendations to the Minister, following international best practice. A key component of this work will be ensuring that the views of a wide range of stakeholders are sought throughout the process to help shape the design of the new agency.

It is expected the Programme Board will be in place throughout 2023 and 2024. The work of the Board will inform future proposals of the Minister for government agreement on the establishment of the new agency.

Minister O’Gorman said:

“I am happy to announce the appointment of the Programme Board to oversee the planning for a dedicated ELC and SAC agency. This Programme Board possesses an excellent mix of experience and expertise and will ensure that proposals for a new agency are based on offering the best possible service to children and their families, educators and practitioners and providers while providing value for money. I also welcome the strong representation from other government departments on this Board highlighting the whole of government commitment to the delivery of accessible, affordable and high-quality ELC and SAC services. The process will involve close consultation with all of the relevant stakeholders and a strong focus on business continuity and continuing improvement through our existing partner agencies in a time of exciting development for the sector. I look forward to following the work of the Programme Board in this very important task.”

Minister O’Gorman announces consultation on new Draft Principles for Engaging with the Arts in Early Learning and Childcare

Minister for Children, Equality, Disability, Integration and Youth, Roderic O’Gorman, today announced a public consultation process inviting artists, early years educators, school-ageart consultation 20 02 2023 childcare practitioners and all stakeholders in the arts, early learning and care and school-age childcare sectors to participate in the further development of the recently published Draft Principles for Engaging with the Arts in Early Learning and Care.

Under the Creative Youth Plan, a key pillar of the Creative Ireland Programme, work began in 2019 to develop key principles to underpin young children’s quality engagement with the arts in early learning and care settings. Research was commissioned, a steering group was established and a consultation event with artists and early years educators was held. While the COVID-19 pandemic caused some disruption to original timelines, the Draft Principles for Engaging with the Arts in Early Learning and Care were published in October 2022 for the purpose of public consultation and testing.

While the draft principles were conceived from an early learning and care perspective, this consultation also aims to explore their relevance to school-age childcare and the ways in which they may be adapted to better support engagement with the arts in school-age childcare.

The Principles will purposefully remain in draft form to allow artists, early years educators and school-age practitioners the opportunity to use and explore the validity of the principles in practice.

Welcoming the public consultation, Minister O’Gorman said:

“Participation in cultural and creative activities promotes the wellbeing of the individual, the community and the nation. It is the aim of Government that every baby, child and young person in Ireland will have access to creative activities. I welcome this consultation, on the Draft Principles for Engaging with the Arts in Early Learning and Care, as part of our commitment to the Creative Ireland Programme, and look forward to your feedback so that collectively we can nurture and enhance the creative experiences of babies and children.”

Access the Draft Principles and full details of the submission process.

The closing date for receipt of submissions is Wednesday, 31 May 2023.

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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