Today, 10 June, Minister for Children and Youth Affairs, Katherine Zappone announced a major funding package to facilitate the reopening of childcare facilities from 29 June.
In developing the funding model, the Minister recognises that a reduced number of children are likely to attend Early Learning and Childcare (ELC) services in the initial weeks of reopening. This necessitates a tailored model, which will allow providers to operate with less parental income.
Early Childhood Ireland is pleased to see that a range of supports has been announced that allow service providers the flexibility to plan and manage the reopening of the services over the coming weeks. We are convening a meeting with our Member Reference Group tomorrow to discuss implications of this funding package across the diversity of our sector and also hear their feedback in relation to timeframes and other key issues.
According to the DCYA, their funding model aims to ensure that childcare providers will not have to charge higher fees than they did Pre-Covid-19, even though the costs of providing childcare will increase.
The funding package will cover four key areas:
- A once-off reopening grant of €18M for centre-based providers opening on 29 June and late August;
- A once-off capital grant of €14.2M. All registered centre-based services re-opening between 29 June and the beginning of September can avail of this grant;
- Continuation of the Revenue-operated Temporary Wage Subsidy Scheme (TWSS) (€32.8M);
- All DCYA funding schemes, including universal subsidies and targeted subsidies for parents (NCS, CCS and TEC) will be available again for children attending Early Learning and Childcare services from June 29.
For further details please read the DCYA Press Release