Offaly County Childcare Committee -   057 9135878

Better Start Continuous Professional Development Registration CCC

Better Start Hive
Dear Service Provider
We are pleased to announce that next week we will be launching Better Start Early Years Learning and Development link to register for Continuous Professional Development (CPD). Primary Authorised User/Primary Authorised (Delegates) will be able access the link on Hive to register Early Years staff in their setting to gain access to a range of e-learning and instructor-led content to support the delivery of CPD training to the Early Learning and Care sector.
Training is delivered through the following programmes:
  • AIM Level 3
  • National Siolta Aistear Initiative (NSAI)
To support Primary Authorised Users/Primary Authorised (Delegates) to register Early Years Educators for CPD, the webinar will cover the following content:
  1. Introduction to Accessing Continual Professional Development (CPD)
  2. Accessing the Learning Platform
  3. Features of the Learning Platform
The webinars will take place at the dates/times outlined below.
Please click on links to register for preferred webinars:
Better Start Continuous Professional Development Registration CCC
06/12/2022 from 10:00am - 11:30am
Better Start Continuous Professional Development SP Event 1
Thursday 8th December @2:30pm
Better Start Continuous Professional Development SP Event 2
Thursday 8th December @ 6:30pm
Better Start Continuous Professional Development SP Event 3
Friday 9th December @10:00am

Better Start National Early Years Quality Development


First 5 Information on Infectious Diseases

As Early Learning and Care (ELC) and School-Age Childcare (SAC) services operate during COVID-19, it is important for babies, toddlers and young children that child-centredness continues to be a basis for how we develop our response for children. First 5

When all the child’s most important adults—parents and practitioners—work together, going to childcare can be a positive experience for everyone.

Everyone will need to remain vigilant and continue to follow Public Health guidance.

School, childcare and COVID-19 -


HPSC Infectious Diseases

Management of Infectious Disease in Childcare Facilities and Other Childcare Settings

Download Booklet:,13444,en.pdf






When to keep your child at home from school or childcare
Keep your child at home if they:

When it's OK to send your child to school or childcare?
It is usually OK to send your child to school or childcare if they:

  • only have nasal symptoms, such as a runny nose or a sneeze, but otherwise feel well
  • have tested negative and have not had any new symptoms for 48 hours
  • have not had diarrhoea for 48 hours

The HSE are seeing a significant increase in the rates of RSV infection; a respiratory virus which causes Bronchiolitis in young children. Symptoms of bronchiolitis usually include a runny/blocked nose, mild fever and cough. In babies, however, it can cause more significant difficulties in breathing and feeding, and young babies are more likely to need hospital care.

More details on Bronchiolitis can be found here: 


Introduction to Síolta, Aistear and the Practice Guide

Introduction to Síolta, Aistear and the Practice GuideSiolta Aistear poster Workshop 1 13th december 2022

This workshop is at an introductory level and may be suitable for ELC practitioners who need to increase their understanding of, and familiarity with, Síolta, Aistear and the Practice Guide.

Expected Learning Outcomes:

  • Understand the structure of Síolta, Aistear and the Practice Guide
  • Engage and reflect with peers in professional dialogue focused on the principles of Síolta and Aistear.
  • Consider how they are using Síolta, Aistear and the Practice Guide in practice and how they might explore them further
  • Record and implement learning from the workshop in your setting identifying specific actions using the action planning tool from the Aistear Síolta Practice Guide.

Booking conditions:

  • This workshop is for Practitioners in County Offaly only (If this criteria does not apply to you and you book a place it will be cancelled)
  • Places are limited to 3 staff members per service

Date: Tuesday 13th December, 7pm - 10pm

Cost: €5

Venue: Tullamore Family Resource Centre

Click here to register today


Increase to minimum NCS subsidy rate: Co-payment recalculation and parental declarations

Dear Service Provider, NCS

Please see the below important update for ELC/SAC providers on the increase to the minimum subsidy rate for the National Childcare Scheme (NCS).

Minimum NCS subsidy increase

As previously communicated, from 2 January 2023, the minimum rate for NCS subsidies will increase from €0.50 to €1.40. The increase, which was introduced by Minister Roderic O’Gorman as part of Budget 2023 measures, means that if parents are in receipt of a subsidy which is less than the maximum, they will receive a higher subsidy towards their childcare fees.

Awards will be recalculated with this new rate and updated accordingly. This will affect existing claims. Service providers do not need to modify the claim if the hours are remaining the same. However, service providers will have to recalculate co-payment and issue new parental agreements.

Identifying affected claims

To assist with identifying which NCS claims in your service have been impacted, a new page called ‘Budget 2023 Claims affected’ will be available on the Early Years Hive from 25 November. This page will be under the Registration menu on Hive and will display the claims that will change during the uplift process. Please note that the uplift process may take up to 10 days from 25 November and not all of the claims will be available on this page from day one. 

Please see the how-to guide here for more information on this new page.

Parental agreement

To assist with this additional administrative work, from 2 December, you will be able to print out Parental Agreements for NCS directly from the Hive. This new feature will be available on the ‘Parental Agreement and Co-payment” section of NCS claims on the NCS registrations page. Once you have calculated the co-payment for an NCS claim, the Parental Agreement will include all co-payment weekly amounts, the child’s name, the claim to and from date etc. this will be available to download and print from this page. Further information on this new feature will be available later next week. 

Please see the how-to guide here for more information on the Parental Agreement.

The Early Years Team


Extension to Deadline for Building Blocks - Improvement Grant Applications

Dear Service Providerdeadline extension

Building Blocks - Improvement Grant applications opened on the 28 October 2022.

The closing date for applications has been extended to Friday 16 December 2022 at 5pm.

There will be no further extension to this date, and it will not be possible to submit late applications.

When submitting your application, please ensure you have attached all required documents from the following checklist:

  Checklist of Documents
1 Professional Report (Mandatory for Strand A)
2 Planning Permission, if required for Strand A only
3 Rental/Lease/licence agreement, if required
4 Owner’s Permission template, if required
5 Indicative Quote Documentation
6 Evidence of Own Funding, if required
7 Additional Supporting Documentation

Please refer to the Applicant Guidelines and FAQ available on the Capital - Documents page of the Early Years Hive for support on completing the application for Building Blocks – Improvement Grant.

Submission of the Building Blocks application form should not be delayed by the e-tendering process, as only an indicative quote needs to be submitted.

Successful applicants must have completed the E-tendering process in advance of any works commencing and funding being spent.

Applicants must be able to demonstrate, where relevant, that they have completed the E- Tendering process. Applicants are advised to maintain all documentation relating to the e tendering process on file.

Applicants can contact the Early Years Provider Centre (EYPC) with any queries by raising a Service Request on Hive under the programme: Building Blocks - Improvement Grant and selecting the relevant sub-category.

PLEASE NOTE: If applicants contact Pobal with an ICT issue within 48 hours of the closing date and time, Pobal cannot guarantee that the ICT issue will be resolved in time to submit the application.

The Early Years Team


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