The Department of Children, Equality, Disability, Integration and Youth (DCEDIY) will re-open the Learner Fund Bursary to Early Learning and Care practitioners who are new graduates of a recognised Early Childhood Education and Care degree programme. The local City/County Childcare Committees (CCC) will process and appraise Learner Fund Graduate Bursary applications.

  1. The qualification for which the bursary is paid must be either:
  2. On the DCEDIY Early Years Recognised Qualifications list and indicated as meeting the qualification requirements for room leader – higher capitation.


  1. The applicant must hold a letter of eligibility to practice from DCEDIY which states that the qualification meets the standard for higher capitation.
  2. The award must be placed at level 7/8/9 on the National Framework of Qualifications (NFQ) and was achieved in the academic years 2015-2022.
  3. The bursary amount will be €750.
  4. The qualification must be a full, major award; the bursary will not be paid in respect of partially completed awards.
  5. The qualification for which the bursary is paid must be that which qualifies the person to work in the Early Learning and Care sector (and is at least level 7 on the NFQ).
  6. Applicants may only apply once and cannot be granted the Learner Fund Graduate bursary for a second time if they have already received it before.
  7. The applicant cannot have received any public funding in support of their completing the award relating to this application.
  8. The bursary is only available to experienced practitioners who were working in a Tusla registered Early Learning & Care service prior to beginning their course.
  9. Applicants must be currently working in a Tusla registered Early Learning & Care Service.
  10. Staff working in standalone School Age Childcare services are not eligible to apply.
  11. Applicants can apply with a full transcript of the completed degree in lieu of a graduating certificate. A full transcript; can be obtained from the educational institution and must show clearly that the learner has been awarded the full degree. Screenshots or downloads from student accounts / portals will cannot be accepted.
  12. Photographic identification must be provided along with any supporting documents.
  13. Late or incomplete applications; will not be accepted.
  14. Decision of the CCC is final and cannot be appealed.

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