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Call for Evidence to Inform an Independent Review of the Cost of Providing Quality Childcare

November 7, 2017

DCYA today announced the first part of the Independent Review of the cost of providing quality childcare: a call for evidence, which will inform subsequent stages of the Independent Review. Following this initial piece of evidence gathering, Crowe Horwath will engage with childcare providers in the form of a survey, interviews, focus groups, and consultation with sector representative bodies and other stakeholders.

ECI will be contributing various studies and reports, both our own and external, to inform the first part of this essential piece of work. Members who would like to submit material at this stage to Crowe Horwath, the accountancy and business advisory firm undertaking the review, can do so directly. They can be emailed directly vanya.sargent@crowehorwath.ie.  Crowe Horwath are particularly interested to receive information on the following:

 

  • Existing studies and research about the cost of childcare in Ireland;
  • Evidence from childcare providers about the factors that make up the cost of providing childcare, and how much of the total cost they represent;
  • Evidence on the additional cost of providing childcare of high quality;
  • Evidence from other jurisdictions in respect of establishing, reviewing, or modelling the costs of childcare provision.

 

The call for an independent review into the cost of providing quality early childhood care and education throughout Ireland has been a top priority for ECI over the last 18-months. We have long advocated that budget considerations and cost models underpinning future developments in childcare policy must be informed by the financial realities facing a very diverse sector. Therefore, we warmly welcomed the announcement by Minister Zappone in August 2017 that an Independent Review of the cost of providing quality childcare would be completed in advance of Budget 2019. As per the recommendations in ECI’s report Doing the Sums: The Real Cost of Providing Childcare (September, 2016) the review must look at variations which impact the cost of quality childcare provision, for example whether the service is community or private; the geography, disadvantage, ongoing professionalisation, future cost pressures such as wages and fundamentally what quality in early childhood care and education looks like.

ECI looks forward to the publication of this review by June 2018 and commends the Minister’s commitment that future Government investment in early childhood care and education will be informed by its findings. This is especially important in the context of the Affordable Childcare Scheme, which DCYA will continue to develop into 2018.

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