Wednesday, 2 October 2013

Questions (232, 233, 234, 235)

Michael Healy-Rae

Question:

232. Deputy Michael Healy-Rae asked the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs her views on a pre-budget submission by Early Childhood Ireland that a training transformation fund should be provided, which would support higher qualifications and continuing professional development; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [41405/13]

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Michael Healy-Rae

Question:

233. Deputy Michael Healy-Rae asked the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs her views on an Early Childhood Ireland proposal that a group of skilled mentors be available to work with clusters of child care services across the country (details supplied); and if she will make a statement on the matter. [41406/13]

View answer

Michael Healy-Rae

Question:

234. Deputy Michael Healy-Rae asked the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs if she will ensure that trainers or tutors who deliver child care or education training must have qualifications and experience relevant to the sector; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [41407/13]

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Michael Healy-Rae

Question:

235. Deputy Michael Healy-Rae asked the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs on behalf of Early Childhood Ireland, if she will adopt a phased approach to the introduction of standards with training and support for the sector; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [41409/13]

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Written answers (Question to Children)

I propose to take Questions Nos. 232 to 235, inclusive, together.

I am committed, in conjunction with the HSE and other stakeholders, to progressing a Pre-School Quality Agenda involving a range of actions aimed at improving the quality within early years services and enhancing the regulatory regime. I have outlined to the Dáil on a number of occasions the areas which I believe need to be addressed as a matter of urgency and a number of reforms have already commenced.

Budget discussions in relation to funding priorities for next year are underway and a number of groups have made pre-budget submissions to my Department. While all proposals are welcomed and are given consideration by my officials, it is not the practice to engage in correspondence or discussions in relation to these proposals while the budgetary process is ongoing.