Tuesday, 26 November 2019

Ceisteanna (441)

Michael McGrath

Ceist:

441. Deputy Michael McGrath asked the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs if her attention or that of a body under the aegis of her Department has been drawn to the reason a childcare facility (details supplied) in County Cork is closing; the steps she is taking to resolve the situation; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [48952/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Children)

Na Páistí Beaga – Magnet Community Group CLG is a community not-for-profit childcare service in County Cork. My Department has been informed that the service intends to close on 31st December 2019. I am acutely aware of the difficulties this future closure may impose on the families and children who attend the facility, as well as the staff who work there.

My Department does not own or operate childcare services; instead it provides funding to subsidise the cost of childcare to parents through a number of schemes. As such, Magnet Community Group is a private organisation and this decision to close the service remains within the remit of its Board.

Both Pobal and Cork City Childcare Committee (CCC) are working on my Department’s behalf with Magnet Community Group CLG; and with parents, the local community, and service providers to find a viable solution which will enable families to access quality childcare following this closure. 

If an alternative service provider intends to provide services in this community served by Na Páistí Beaga, they will be eligible to apply for the Early Learning and Care and School Aged Care programmes, once they have met requirements including registering with the Early Years Inspectorate of Tusla.

Parents who are concerned that they may be affected by this closure should contact Cork City Childcare Committee. Cork CCC may be able to assist them in locating alternative childcare places.