The latest news and information

DES Inspection Update

March 10, 2016

The Department of Education and Skills (DES) have completed their pilot of the new Early Years Education- Focused Inspections. Over 50 services put took part in the pilot inspections and the DES held information sessions nationwide, sharing both the service providers’ experience and their learning.  The following information has been garnered from meetings hosted recently by the Department around the country:

  • The education-focused inspections will focus on four areas:    
    1. Quality of context to support children’s learning and development
    2. Quality of processes to support children’s learning and development
    3. Quality of children’s learning experiences and achievements
    4. Quality of management and leadership for learning
  • The inspection will give a rating and make recommendations which will form an inspection process for improvement.  
  • The DES team emphasised that the context of the setting would be a huge consideration when inspecting a setting. 
  • The feedback from the pilot settings was overwhelmingly positive  
  • The DES are considering providing 48 hours’ notice before inspections, but will retain the option of conducting unannounced inspections also.  

A number of issues were raised by participants at these consultative meetings, including how the inspectorate would deal with childcare for under threes (only ECCE provision is subject to DES inspection).  Other issues included non- contact time, and the pay and conditions of staff.  
The fact that inspectors are suitability qualified was welcomed.  It was also suggested that there is a need for a toolkit to help settings prepare for an inspection.

Share share share share
Site maintained and developed by Cloud Nine