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EYES Update 8 March 2022

EYES Update 8 March 2022
EYES Update 5 July 2022

We are here to support you 

Early Childhood Ireland’s Early Years Employer Service (EYES) can be contacted Monday to Friday from 9am to 5pm, by phone on (01) 405 7103 or by email at eyes@earlychildhoodireland.ie. The EYES team is here to help with a range of issues related to the running of the Early Years and School Age service.  If you have a query outside of these hours, please send us an email and we will get back to you as soon as possible.

Do you have a question for the Early Years Employer Service team?

Please submit your question to the Early Years Employer Service team below.

New Registrations with Tusla

Tusla have recently made some changes to the timeframes for new registration applications. Proposed registered providers are still required to submit a complete application to the inspectorate at least 90 days in advance of setting up a new early years service.

This year, in order to prevent a backlog of applications, registered providers are now required to submit all documentation within 10 days of making their initial application. If documentation is not received within this 10-day period, the application will be automatically closed, and the application fee will be forfeited. Therefore, it is important that all your documentation is ready before submitting your application. We would recommend that registered providers compile their documents together first before initiating the application with Tusla.

You can find more information about new applications, including a new one page poster detailing all of the required documentation, on the Tusla website. You can also contact our EYES team on 01 4057103 or eyes@earlychildhoodireland.ie for support with your registration application.

Managing Long Term Absence

The EYES team often get a number of queries on how to manage long term absence in the workplace. To assist providers that may be employers, we have put together some tips to assist providers and managers in managing long term absences:

  • Employers should ensure that they have a good Sick Leave or Staff Absence Policy in place, outlining the procedures for long term illnesses or absences.
  • Ensure that GP notes or Sick Certs are provided by staff at the frequency outlined in your policy, and that these are received consistently.
  • Employers and managers should keep regular contact with staff on sick leave and should look to establish likely dates for return to work. Discretion should be applied here in certain cases, i.e. stress.
  • Introduce ‘Return to Work’ interviews for staff returning from short- or long-term sick leave. This can include questions on how to safely support staff return to work, to ensure no recurrence of illness or absence.
  • If included in contracts and/or staff handbooks, employers can consider referring employees on long term sick leave to Occupational Health Specialists or the company doctor for further information on their condition, and likely return to work dates.
  • When employees are returning to work, employers should ensure that employees are fit for work and have been signed off as being so by their doctor.

Following these tips can ensure that your service is managing long term sick leave in a coherent, diligent manner and employees feel supported and valued on their return to the workplace. The One to One Meeting Record in our HR Pack that can be purchase in our ECI Shop is an ideal resource for ‘Return to Work’ Interviews.

Should you have any issues with managing absence in your setting, please contact the EYES Team on 01 4057103 or eyes@earlychildhoodireland.ie.

 

New Bank Holiday and the ECCE/NCS Calendars

This year (2022) an extra once-off public holiday will take place on Friday, 18 March. From 2023, there will be a new annual public holiday in early February to mark St Brigid’s Day.  The new public holiday for 2022 has now been applied to both NCS and ECCE service calendars on the Early Years Hive.

Please see the important information regarding this public holiday and your service calendars for ECCE and NCS below.

ECCE

In order to apply 18 March as a public holiday closure on your 2021 ECCE service calendar, you must first save a draft version of your 2021 ECCE service calendar and then submit it. The steps for doing this are slightly different depending on whether you currently have 18 March marked as a closure day on your calendar or not.

  1. Services that have 18 March marked as OPEN on their 2021 ECCE service calendar

If you do not have 18 March marked as a closure and you would like the public holiday applied to your calendar, please save a draft version of your 2021 ECCE service calendar and submit it. There is no other calendar requirement in relation to the bank holiday in this scenario.

You can find a detailed guidance document with screenshots HERE.

  1. Services that have 18 March marked as CLOSED on their 2021 ECCE service calendar

If you do have 18 March marked as a closure and you would like this changed to a public holiday on your calendar, please save a draft version of your ECCE 2021 service calendar, add a new closure day accordingly in its place (in a future week) and submit it.

You can find a detailed guidance document with screenshots HERE.

NCS 

The additional public holiday will be automatically added to your NCS calendar on the early Years Hive. There is no action required from service providers for NCS. If you had previously added a closure for this date on your calendar, this will now be removed and any marked as subsidised will be re-counted in 10 allowable subsidised closures days.

 

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