Tuesday, 27 July 2021
Department of Children, Equality, Disability, Integration and Youth
Early Childhood Care and Education
1222. To ask the Minister for Children, Equality, Disability, Integration and Youth the percentage of children availing of free preschool services for one and two years; if a county breakdown of same is available; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [40441/21]
The Early Childhood Care and Education (ECCE) programme is a two-year, universal pre-school programme available to all children within the eligible age range. Children are eligible to enrol in the Programme once they are 2 years and 8 months of age in the September of a given programme year and are eligible to avail of two years of the programme (provided that they are not older than 5 years and 6 months at the end of the programme year).
The ECCE programme is not a mandatory programme and parents can choose to send their child to the ECCE programme for two years, one year or not at all. Since the introduction of the Programme in 2010, uptake rates have been approximately 95% of eligible children. The proportion of children availing of the full two-year entitlement is determined by a range of factors, including parental choice with regard to school starting age.
The figures supplied by the scheme administrator Pobal in the tables below shows the percentage of children enrolled in the ECCE programme in 2019 that availed of one or two years. This data is presented by county.
The figure for one year of the programme is calculated on the basis of the number of children with an ECCE registration in 2019 but no 2018 or 2020 ECCE registration. The figure for two years of the programme is based on the number of children with a 2019 ECCE registration and also a 2018 or a 2020 ECCE registration.
|County||I year ECCE||County||2 years ECCE|