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16 Aug 2022

'Vast majority' of parents set to benefit from childcare fee freeze - O'Gorman

'Vast majority' of parents set to benefit from childcare fee freeze - O'Gorman

'Vast majority' of parents set to benefit from childcare fee freeze - O'Gorman

Parents whose children are in childcare are set to benefit from a freeze on parental fees. 

A payment determined by calculating 7% of income capacity will be sent to providers who agree not to increase fees above rates charged in September 2021. 

The move is part of the Transition Fund - effective until August 31 2022 - which will provide financial support to Early Learning and Care (ELC) and School-Age Childcare (SAC) providers between the end of the Employment Wage Subsidy Scheme (EWSS) in April and the introduction of the new Core Funding from September 2022. 

Minister for Children, Equality, Disability, Integration and Youth, Roderic O’Gorman, today (Wednesday May 18) welcomed the news, confirming that 92% of ELC and SAC providers in Ireland have agreed to the freeze. 

The minister said, "I am delighted that in return for this investment, the vast majority of parents will benefit from the operation of a fee freeze. Parents should feel confident and reassured knowing that in services participating in the Transition Fund, their ELC and SAC fees will not increase. 

"This is the beginning of fee management that will now make it possible for substantial future investment to reduce parental fees over time. This begins next September with the new extension of the universal NCS subsidy – worth up to €1,170 per annum - to all children up to 15.” 

Core Funding introduces a way to fund the sector and begins transforming the sector to one that is increasingly publicly funded and publicly managed. 

Minister O'Gorman continued: "I am encouraged that providers have shown a real willingness and openness to work in partnership with the State towards the shared goal of delivering high quality and affordable ELC and SAC for families, for the public good. The high uptake of the Transition Fund bodes well for the future of the sector as we move towards greater public investment and public management, and the introduction of Core Funding in September.” 

The full list of services that have signed up to the Transition Fund is available here, however providers who have not yet signed up can still do so. 

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