Minister Roderic O’Gorman has published the Annual Early Years Sector Profile Report 2019/2020. This annual report – the eighteenth in the series – provides a detailed overview of the ELC and SAC sector in Ireland, including the numbers of children in receipt of state subsidies, information on ELC and SAC fees, staff wages, qualifications and turnover.
The report, which plays a central role in informing policy development and in assessing the impact of policy change, is based on a survey of ELC and SAC providers in Ireland and administrative data from DCEDIY schemes. The report is produced by Pobal on behalf of the DCEDIY.
The Annual Early Years Sector Profile report is based on information collected at the end of June 2020 during an unusual and challenging period, amid the Covid-19 pandemic, when ELC and SAC providers were preparing to reopen. Despite the difficult circumstances almost 3,000 providers completed the survey, demonstrating their commitment to provide evidence for policy-making.
Speaking on the report, Minister O’Gorman thanked all the ELC & SAC providers who participated in the survey and reflected on some of the key findings and said:
“I am very pleased to publish the 2019/20 Annual Early Years Sector Profile Report. Undoubtedly, 2020 marked one of the most difficult years we have collectively faced and I recognise and applaud the leadership shown by services and staff in the context of Covid-19, putting children and their families at the heart of their work.
“Notwithstanding the impact of Covid-19, I am struck by the positive developments across the sector and through the data evidenced in this report. This report reveals another year-on-year increase in the number of children with additional needs receiving support under the Access and Inclusion model. The continued progress towards a highly qualified workforce is also very positive, with a significant increase in the number of staff qualified to level 7 or higher.”