Recognising Quality

Good quality childcare provides a safe, healthy environment and supports the physical, emotional, social, moral and intellectual development of children. When visiting different facilities, do not be afraid to ask questions. A good facility will be only too happy to share all their information.

Whenever you first approach a childcare service (any type) requiring information, there are a few key pieces of information that you should be given upfront. A well organised and quality early childhood service will have this information promptly to hand, mostly in writing or print, presented in a clear, easy to understand manner, and should leave you with very few questions to ask.

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Details provided by the service should include:

  • Is the early childhood service registered and inspected by Tusla, the Child and Family Agency?
  • The hours of operation and the fee charges/arrangements.
  • The age range of children catered for and what is the most number catered for at any one time?
  • Can your child be accommodated if they have additional needs (e.g. learning, physical or behavioural)?
  • What facilities are provided for play, sleep, toilet/ nappy changing and meals? Is there a sample menu for foods provided?
  • The aims/philosophy of the service.

Parents can refer to the Quality Regulatory Framework (QRF) for details of the information that they are entitled to be given for services that are notified and inspected by Tusla.

  • Better Start
  • Education Focused Inspection
  • Siolta (Aistear/Siolta Practice Guide)

The regulations place a significant emphasis on the governance of services to ensure that children attending early years services are safe, receive appropriate care and have a positive experience where they can develop and learn in a quality service.

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