This Week in Childcare

Dear Colleagues,

These are the deadlines, information, and announcements for the week of 15th – 19th January 2024.


Friday 2nd February 2024

Deadline for Submission of the Finance and Impact Returns (FIRs)

Thursday 29th February 2024

STEAM for ECEC workshop in WCCC offices.

Friday 22nd March 2024

Financial reporting deadline for Core Funding


STEAM for ECEC workshop with Paula Walshe . DkIT

When: 29 February 2024 Time: 1-7pm  Location: Westmeath CCC training Room N91E430

What will this workshop cover? What is STEAM and why is it important to ECEC practice?

  • Strategies to incorporate STEAM using resources you already have.
  • Unplugged technology in ECEC environment
  • Hands on interactive STEAM activities
  • Incorporating STEAM into Aistear curriculum framework
  • STEAM in an emergent and inquiry play based curriculum. 
  • All participants will receive a training pack. See attached Leaflet. 

Booking through Eventbrite only

Updating Service Directory 2024

Westmeath CCC are currently in the process of updating our ELC/SAC Service Directory 2024. 

In line with our role of providing support and information to all ELC/SAC service providers in regards to the delivery of DCEDIY Programmes, AIM and other statutory regulations, national policy and quality standards we use various methods of communication.
While emails to services are used regularly, text messages also provide a way for us to notify services, remind them of upcoming events or deadlines and to ensure that all services in our area are aware of updates and new information.
This database is reviewed annually and updated on an ongoing basis if requested by childcare services. More than one phone number or email can be included here if necessary.

Would you mind taking 5 minutes to complete this form?

Thanks to all the ELC/SAC services who have already submitted this information.

Early Years Inspectorate Webinar – Inspection Findings Review – Monday 29th January 2024

This webinar will provide an overview of the Early Years Inspectorate’s new Inspection Findings Review process and the Multiple Providers Overview Project

In relation to the new Inspections Finding Review process, the webinar will;

  • Explain what is meant by an Inspection Findings Review
  • Outline the process for making a request for an Inspection Findings Review
  • Describe how requests for  Inspection Findings will be processed
  • Explain how outcomes of an Inspection Findings Review will be communicated.

In relation to the Multiple Providers Overview Project the webinar will; 

  • Explain the project and how it will function 
  • Outline how this will affect providers 

Booking essential click Here to register.

Finance and Impact Returns (FIRs)

The FIRs can be completed now and should be submitted through Pobal Online. The DCEDIY has advised the importance for all community services to continue to submit FIRs as this allows the DCEDIY and Pobal to identify and resolve problems. FIRs also act as an informative tool for future financial planning. The deadline for submission is Friday 2nd February 2024 at 5pm and submissions should include information relating to September to December 2023.

Core Funding Income & Expenditure Materials & Videos

The DCEDIY have agreed a transitional arrangement for financial reporting to cover year 1 and year 2 of the Core Funding scheme. Financial reporting requirements in this transitional phase have been significantly simplified and streamlined and the material now available on the Early Years Hive reflects those changes. It should be noted that the Financial Management Tool is optional and the financial reporting deadline for Core Funding 22nd March 2024. The revised reporting requirement during the transitional phase will consist of a sector specific Income and Expenditure Report. This Income and Expenditure Report will significantly reduce the reporting requirement on partner services.

Please refer to the attached documents

  • Recent changes to original reporting requirements
  • Core Funding Financial Reporting Documents FAQ
  • Income and Expenditure Report-How to Complete

AIM Rules for 2023/2024

The AIM Rules for 2023/2024 have now been published on the AIM website. These can be accessed through the following link:

AIM Level 1 2023/2024 Reminder

It is still possible for services with new and existing Graduates of LINC to submit your AIM Level 1 application. As AIM Level 1 is an annual application, if you currently have a qualified LINC Graduate working in your service as an Inclusion Coordinator and have not submitted your AIM Level 1 2023 application, then we encourage you to apply for the 2023/2024 programme call. Please note: AIM level 1 funding will commence from the Monday following approval of your application. Applications must be submitted electronically via the Early Years HIVE portal. Applicant guidelines can be found here.

Should you have any queries in relation to the Access and Inclusion Model (AIM), please contact the Early Years Provider Centre by raising a Request on HIVE as follows:

Request Programme: AIM Level 1.

Request Type: Application.

Request Type Detail: How To.

Nurturing Skills Learner Fund Pilot

The Nurturing Skills Learner Fund will run as a pilot scheme in 2024 and applications will open in May 2024, for early years educators who have applied to a approved higher education institution with a view for the selected educators to receive financial support for studies starting/commencing in September 2024. The pilot scheme will run in conjunction with the current Learner Fund scheme which will continue to be administrated by the Childcare Committees. The Learner Fund bursary award contribution for 2024 will rise from €750 to €1000 to assist those who are not part of the pilot Nurturing Skills Learner Fund. Further information is available in the Press Release, which you can access here.

Covid case advice

Please find below links to information from the HPSC in relation to Covid-19 and information from the HSE for ELC and SAC providers on preventing the spread of Covid-19 and children returning to ELC and SAC settings. We would be grateful if you share this information with parents, guardians, and staff.

In addition, please find link below to the Management of Infectious Diseases in Childcare Facilities guidance resource.,13444,en.pdf Management of Infectious Disease in Childcare Facilities and Other Childcare Settings (2012).

For general Covid-19 queries you can contact HSE on 1800 700 700 between 8am and 8pm Monday to Friday and 9am – 5pm Saturday and Sunday or visit the HSE website

Should you have any queries on any of the above, please do not hesitate to contact us on 04493-35454 or

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