On March 11th, I announced the launch of the National Childcare Scheme, which will provide a pathway to quality, accessible, affordable Early Learning and Care and School-Age Childcare in Ireland.
In launching the scheme, I also announced a once-off Transition Support Payment. The payment recognises the central role of childcare providers and acknowledges the work involved in the initial transition period when both the new Scheme and the old legacy programmes will briefly run side by side.
All providers who sign-up by mid-September 2019 to participate in the National Childcare Scheme will qualify for the payment which will be made in the weeks prior to the first child registrations under the new Scheme (i.e. circa mid- late October).
With regard to the value of the payment, I have tasked staff within my Department with developing a fair and proportionate system of allocation recognising the varying scale of work within providers of different sizes.
I will be making a further announcement on this matter in the coming months, at which stage full details will be made available.
A total of €2m is available to support services with the transition to the NCS. This is in addition to the €19.4m I have made available to providers to assist them with the administration and non-contact work associated with the existing schemes.