The ranges of centre-based childcare options available to parents include day care services, (sometimes called crèches or nurseries) and sessional or preschool services (sometimes called playgroups or Montessori schools or Kindergardens etc.)
Depending on your specific needs, you can choose full day or sessional childcare:
|A full day care service||Typically provides care and education for children from infants to 5 years old and sometimes school age childcare for older children.
It will usually open from 7.30 am until 6pm all year round. It often offers breakfast clubs and school drop off/collection services.
|A sessional service||Typically runs for a 3 hour session daily, for 38 weeks a year. Sometimes they offer extended services before the formal session to facilitate parents en route to or from work.|
Aistear and Síolta, our national Curriculum and Quality Frameworks emphasise the importance of play in the care and education of young children. Most services in Ireland run a play-based curriculum. Some adopt a very specific philosophy such as Steiner, High/Scope or Montessori, while others combine several approaches to pre-school education.
To assist you in differentiating between the various programmes available we have provided you with more information on some specific types of services. Please click the links below for further information: