Good News – Bursary for Level 7, 8 and 9 Graduates now available!


The DCYA plan to pay a Bursary (of approx. €750) to early childhood educators who have completed a major award in Early Childhood Care and Education at Level 7, Level 8, or Level 9 qualification on the National Framework of Qualifications since the inception of the Learner Fund (2013).


Job Vacancies

Bright Star Academy
Position – 2 x Full Time Permanent Contract Positions

ECCE Payments


ECCE Payment - It has been brought to our attention that some ECCE payments that reached bank accounts this morning are incorrect. 

We are currently working with Pobal and online support to amend this.

Capacity Survey of Early Childhood Services

Please complete the following short survey from DCYA which aims to give us an accurate picture of the capacity for childcare provision throughout Ireland.

This is a short survey (5 mins max) but the information it provides is extremely valuable for the sector.

ECCE Payments & Higher Capitation Update 13.09.16

Pobal will be issuing weekly ECCE payments from this week onwards, so any group in contract by 9am Tuesday will be paid by this Friday. If a group completes the contracting process after Tuesday, it will be the following Friday before a payment will be issued. 

Learner Fund 4 August 2016 Update


Following a review of Learner Fund 4,DCYA have amended the criteria to take account of feedback it has received in respect to the on-going training needs of the early year’s sector and the continuing qualification recognition process. 

Staff Wanted

We're Hiring 

Due to the expansion of our facility with another ECCE Room.

Childcare Assistants and Childcare Supervisors

All Candidates Must have minimum qualification of FETAC Childcare Level 6. Additional requirements:


Garda clearance, First Aid, Child Protection Training. Applicants must have a great knowledge of Aistear and Siolta.


Please send CV and any enquires to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.



The Access & Inclusion Model (AIM) is a model of supports designed to ensure that children with disabilities can access the Early Childhood Care & Education (ECCE) programme.  AIM is a child-centred model, involving 7 levels of progressive support, moving from the universal to the targeted, based on the needs of the child and the early years service provider.

Learner Fund 3 May 2016 - Is Now Open

A Learner who has applied to the Department of Children and Youth Affairs (DCYA) for qualification status recognition, and who has received a letter from DCYA verifying that their current qualification is not a Major Award, is eligible to apply for Learner Fund 3 (May 2016)in order to undertake a Major Award at Level 5 to meet future minimum regulatory qualification requirements
Learner Fund 3 (May 2016)
will open to applications on May 27th (@ 14:00 hrs.) 2016
and will close for applications on July 29th (@ 18:00 hrs.) 2016

Statement from Institute of Technology Carlow Re: Level 7

The Institute of Technology Carlow is please to announce that the ezpert appoint by the Department of Education & Skills to review the Level 7 (Add-On) Bachelor of Arts in Applied Early Childhood and Education & Care for higher capitation purposed has concluded that the content of the programme (i.e. the 60 credits taught during one academic year) does meet the requirements of the eligibility criteria for the higher capitation grant for the DCYA funded ECCE programme in terms of skills and knowledge.

Childminding Development Grants 2016

Who is the Childminding Development Grant for? 

Childminders, grandparents, relatives etc. who provide a childminding service in their own (childminder’s) home, or those planning to set up a new childminding service. The grant is not available to childminders caring for children in the parent’s home.

Parent & Toddler Grant Funding 2016 - NOW AVAILABLE!

Westmeath County Childcare Committee in collaboration with the Minister for Children & Youth Affairs is delighted to seek applications for a Parent & Toddler grant, from existing, or those wishing to set up, Parent and Toddler Groups. If you are involved in running a Parent & Toddler Group in Co. Westmeath and would like further information: please contact Westmeath County Childcare Committee on

044 9335454 or email  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Closing date for receipt of applications is Friday 2nd September 2016. 


REMINDER TUSLA Re-registration

Childcare services which were previously notified to Tusla under the provisions for notification as prescribed by the Pre School Child Care Regulations 2006 are now required to be re-registered under Article 58 E of the Child & Family Agency Act 2013.

Minister Reilly publishes New Child Care Regulations

Dr James Reilly, Minister for Children and Youth Affairs, has today signed new Child Care Regulations (the Child Care Act 1991 (Early Years Services) Regulations 2016) which will come into effect on a phased basis from 30th June 2016.  The new Regulations provide for pre-school services, that is, those services catering for children under the age of 6 who are not attending primary school.

CCS Private Contracts Update

DCYA have activated the second batch of CCS Private contracts on the PIP system this morning Friday, April 22nd at 9am.  
79 services in this second batch will have their contracts activated on PIP simultaneously.  
A third batch will follow, based on signed contracts/application forms that may be received by the Department in the coming days.
Please see attached communication for more details.



Due to a matter arising the deadline for completed applications has now been extended until 5pm Friday 8th April 2016 to facilitate the completion of your application.

Please ensure that all sections are completed with required documentation attached before submitting your application

EYC 2016 Closing for Applications at 12 mid-day today 6th April 2016


Please note the deadline for submitted EYC 2016 applications is 12 mid-day today 6th April 2016  - the link will remain on this page for an interim period but any applications submitted after the deadline will not be accepted. 

All expressions of Interest received by DCYA for the Community Childcare Subvention (CCS) have been processed.

The Department of Children and Youth Affairs (DCYA) has now processed all Expressions of Interest for participation in the Community Childcare Subvention (CCS) – Private programme, submitted before the closing date of 11th March 2016.  All services that submitted an Expression of Interest by this date should receive a CCS (Private) Application Pack by Tuesday 29thMarch.

The RSA's Check it Fits is coming soon to Westmeath

The Road Safety Authority (RSA) has introduced a new, free service in response to a frightening statistic that shows that as many as 4 out of 5 child car seats are incorrectly fitted which can result in serious injury or worse, a fatality in the event of a collision.

Minister Reilly announces the release of €16m for 8,000 extra places under Community Childcare Subvention

The Minister for Children and Youth Affairs, Dr James Reilly, today announced the release of €16m extra funding from Budget 2016 so that the Community Childcare Subvention (CCS) scheme, which subsidises childcare for certain low income parents, will be made more accessible by being available through Private Childcare Service Providers.  The extension to the scheme will apply from Monday 7th March 2016 and is expected to fund around 8,000 additional childcare places.

JOB OPPORTUNITY - Local Area Co- Ordinator Full Time & Part Time Post


Westmeath County Childcare Committee (WCCC) will employ two LA coordinators to oversee the day to day running of the Coordinated Disability Initiative between Longford County Childcare Committee and Westmeath County Childcare Committee.

This is a fantastic opportunity to play key role in a uniquely innovative project.  Excellent communication and interpersonal skills are essential with a minimum third level qualification in Disability/Early Education. 


Budget Update - ECCE FAQs January 2016

Budget update 7th January 2016 - The Department of Children and Youth Affairs has updated the Frequently Asked Questions regarding the ECCE programme and the budget changes.


Click here to access the FAQs. 


NEW Tax Clearance System

You may be aware that from the 1st January 2016, Revenue changed their tax clearance application and verification systems. Paper Tax Clearance Certificates will no longer be issued for a 12 month period.

Revenue will move to providing for real-time ongoing tax clearance. This is to be known as eTax Clearance.

Now Open for Applications - Learner Fund 4

Minister James Reilly recently announced the Learner Fund 4. Learner Fund 4 will subsidise eligible courses leading to a major award at Level 6 on the National Framework of Qualifications (NFQ).

Learner Fund 4 is opening for applications on Monday 25th January at 2pm, and will remain open until 10th March 2016.

Pre-school providers must submit an online application via their own PIP page, on behalf of their staff member, for a subsidised training course under the heading ‘Learner Fund 4’.

**IMPORTANT UPDATE FROM DCYA** Refunds for Fee Paying ECCE Eligible Children - 21st October 2015

WCCC have been advised by DCYA today that a refund of pre-school fees can take place for parents if their children meet the below criteria:

·         Eligible for ECCE in 2015 and 2016 – (Children born between 01 January 2012 – 30 June 2012)

·         Have been in attendance and fee paying for pre-school from September 2015


Budget 2016 contains a number of important measures to improve childcare services, including an extension of free pre-school from 1 September next.  Information about the main improvements  are on our website, and we will shortly add a set of answers to Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs).

Affordable childcare

The cost of childcare can be a significant barrier for parents wanting to take up work, education or training. Budget 2016 provides two initiatives focused on increasing the affordability of childcare, to lay the foundation for providing more affordable childcare to a broader range of families.

Quality Child Care

Quality matters for children. Budget 2016 funds a number of measures to build the quality of childcare provision, including:

ECCE Higher Capitation Application Process 2015 /16

WCCC have been advised that the ECCE Higher Capitation application process for the 2015/16 Programme call is now open. Please be aware of the link between this process and the list of DCYA Early Years Recognised Qualifications as published at

Ireland Fight for the Future


Ireland Fight for the Future Campaign believe that inclusion in Ireland for preschool children should represent the values, beliefs, policies and practices which support each child regardless of ability to access and participate fully in all aspects of their lives and within their communities. Inclusive practice is embedded in reciprocal relationships, promoting a sense of well-being and identity and belonging for child, family and pedagogues.  One of the main features which encourages and promotes inclusion for young children is the right to access, quality affordable early childhood education and care.  There is currently no universal Government funding to support children with special needs accessing the ECCE Scheme to participate fully in mainstream preschool.  Research including the National Disability Authority 2012, the National Council for Special Education 2013, the National Policy Framework for children and young people 2014- 2020 all agree that early intervention is cost effective and beneficial to society.   

Progressing Disability Services for Children and Young People Programme

The Guidance on Specialist Supports has been issued, is available to read on the Change Hub and will shortly be available to read on It was developed under this programme by a Working Group and through consultation, with contributions from parents and clinicians bringing a wide range of experience and expertise.  The Guidance outlines the need for specialist support for a small number of children whose specific needs require a level of expertise which may not solely be met by the Children’s Disability Network Team or Primary Care services.

DCYA Scheme Child Registrations 2015

Parent letters, Service letters and FAQ documents are now available to download from your PIP homepage for each of the three DCYA schemes.  Please take time to read through all of these documents prior to beginning the registration process.