State Support

9 September 2016

State Support Provision for Children I have been asked to write a report explaining the historical development of the ECCE sector in Ireland Covering the current state provisions relating to children describing the legislation and regulations relevant to ECCE and how to use these in practise to maintain quality Findings: * Historical development of the ECCE sector in Ireland * Current ECCE provision by the state * Health and welfare * Equal Opportunity legislation * Quality ECCE Environment Siolta Historical developments of the ECCE sector in Ireland

Traditionally childcare was provided by the family e. g. grandparents and other family members and the provision of formal childcare places were very limited. Traditionally the mother was the homemaker while the father went out to work to provide for the family. In the past 20 years family roles have changed and childcare in Ireland has had to evolve due to the economic downturn, in the past and more recently families found it a lot harder to cope financially as there was a big demand now for affordable Childcare In 1991 the Childcare Act was introduced , this changed how childcare provision was delivered.

State Support Essay Example

In fact the Pre- School Childcare Regulations 1996 came from the Act. This was the first time that childcare services were inspected and regulated. In 2010 the EECE pre-school scheme was introduced the objective of the free pre-school year is to provide a free year to all children the year before they attend primary school. It was intended to provide a quality childcare curriculum to all children attending the free year. “In a ten year period the level of service provision doubled in Laois with 40 services (primarily sessional) doubling to over 80 services”.

Laois County Childcare Committee figures. Current ECCE provision by the state In 2010 the ECCE or free pre-school scheme was introduced. This replaced the childcare supplement and it showed the Government’s commitment to early childhood care and education as it ensures all children are guaranteed a free pre-school place, prior to their attendance at primary School. Services providing the free pre-school year must adhere to the principles and practices of Siolta which will be discussed in the last section of the assignment.

Other provision includes the Childcare Education and Training Support (CETS scheme) which supports parents in training programmes to access a childcare place at a minimum cost. This scheme covers children of all ages to access a full time, part time or afterschool place. “The Childcare Education and Training Support programme (CETS) is administered by the Department of Children & Youth Affairs on behalf of FAS and the VECs. FAS and the VECs decide who is eligible to avail of the programme, and the main terms and conditions of the programme”. ttp://www. dcya. gov. ie/viewdoc. asp? DocID=120 Health and welfare One of the supports by the state for families is the provision of a medical card. A medical card is provided to families on low income to support them to get certain medical services free of charge. These service include attending a Doctor for free, hospital services and some dental treatment. To qualify for a medical card you are means tested and if you qualify it covers the whole family. The medical card scheme is rolled out by the Health Service Executive (HSE). The Department of Health and Children is responsible for health service provision in Ireland and these services are delivered by the Health Service Executive (HSE)” Donohoe J and Gaynor F, 2007, p203. Child benefit is a universal payment provided to all families whose children are under 16 years of age, or under 18 years of age if the child is in full-time education, or has a disability. The scheme is administered by the Department of Social Protection. You must register your baby when it is born to begin the claim process.

There are different rates if you have one child and other rates for families with multiple children. “Child Benefit is paid at one and a half times the appropriate monthly rate for twins, and at double the appropriate monthly rate for triplets and other multiple births” Equal Opportunity legislation The Employment Equality Act 1998-2011 covers all workplaces and is designed to combat discrimination on nine grounds, these are gender, civil status, family status, sexual orientation, religion, age (does not apply to a person under 16, disability, race & membership of the Traveller community.

This act covers all work places as mentioned above and if an employee feels they are discriminated on any of the grounds they are entitled to take a case to the Equality Tribunal. The role of the Equality Tribunal is to “investigate or mediates claims of unlawful discrimination under the equality legislation. A Tribunal mediator will facilitate parties to reach a mediated agreement which is legally binding. Where parties object to mediation, a case will be heard by a Tribunal Equality Officer, who will hear evidence from both parties before issuing a legally binding decision”. http://www. itizensinformation. ie/en/employment/equality_in_work/equality_authority. html The Equal Status Act 2002 and amended in 2004 also aims to combat discrimination but covers the provision of services such as training bodies etc. The Equality Authority provides information to the public on areas of discrimination, they do not take cases for individuals this is done by the Equality Tribunal mentioned above. Quality ECCE Environment Siolta As mentioned above for a childcare service to participate in the free pre-school year they must implement the principles and practices of Siolta.

Siolta is the Irish word for seeds, the concept of the framework was that it was a development tool to support childcare services on a journey towards achieving their potential in terms of quality provision. “Siolta, the National Quality Framework for Early Childhood Education, was developed by the Centre for Early Childhood Development and Education on behalf of the Department of Education and Skills. It was published in 2006. Siolta is designed to define, assess and support the improvement of quality across all aspects of practice in early childhood care and education (ECCE) settings where children aged birth to six years are present.

These settings include: * Full and Part-time Daycare * Childminding * Sessional services * Infant classes in primary schools” http://www. siolta. ie/index. php It is intended that Siolta can add value at many levels in practice situations e. g. support for team members and professional practice. Siolta comprises of 16 standards which cover all areas of practice. Services will address and aim to translate these into all areas of their childcare practice. Childcare services and the junior classes in primary Schools have been implementing the principles and practices as part of their curriculum for a number of years.

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