The aim of this page is to help parents make informed decisions when choosing childcare in Laois.  It is important to understand the different types of Early Years Services available in Laois

Early Years Service Providers

Early Years Services and childminders provide full time care, part-time care, sessional and after-school services. Fees charged are generally at the discretion of the service provider

  • Private Service Providers

Private service providers offer quality childcare services that are run as private businesses. These Early Years services range from small businesses that are operated by sole traders to larger childcare facilities that are operated by companies, some of which may have a number of different services in various locations. Private services may offer the Early Childhood Care and Education programme (ECCE), Community Childcare Subvention (CCS), Community Childcare Subvention Plus (CCSP), Community Childcare Subvention Universal (CCSU), Community Childcare Subvention Resettlement (CCSR), Community Childcare Subvention Resettlement (Transitional) CCSR(T) and the Training and Employment Childcare (TEC) Funding Programmes.

  • Community Service Providers

Community Service Providers (not-for profit) offer quality Early Years services and are managed by a voluntary Board of Management. Community based childcare services may offer the ECCE, CCS, CCSP, CCSR, CCSR(T) and TEC childcare Funding Programmes.

  • Childminders

A Childminder is a self-employed person who provides childcare in their own home. Childminders may offer the National Funding Programmes to parents subject to meeting certain criteria.

Tusla have published a guide on “What to expect from an early years service” which can be downloaded here: What to expect from an early years service

Different Types Of Childcare:

Sessional: A sessional service refers to a programme for children for up to 3.5 hours per session. Services may offer a morning and/or an afternoon session.

Part-Time Day Care:A part-time day care service refers to a programme for children over 3.5 hours and less than 5 hours per day.

Full Day Care: A full day care service refers to a programme of activities for children for more than 5 hours per day.A full day service may include sessional and part-time services and School Age Childcare Services for children attending primary school.

School Age Childcare: School Age Childcare refers to centre-based services for school aged children from 4 – 12 years which operate during one or more of the following periods: before school – after school – during the school holidays.

Childminders: Childminding services refers to care for children within a Childminders home. A Childminding service may include sessional and part-time services and School-Age Childcare services for children attending primary school.

To download a copy of A Parent’s Guide to the National Childcare Funding Programmes 2019/2020 please click on this link:

For more information on the different types of funding schemes available to parents please click on the boxes below

What is the National Childcare Scheme?

The National Childcare Scheme is a pathway to truly accessible, affordable, quality childcare. From October 2019 it will replace all previous targeted childcare programmes with a single, streamlined and user-friendly Scheme to help parents meet the cost of quality childcare.

Supports are available for families with children aged between 24 weeks and 15 years who are attending any participating Tusla registered childcare service, including any Tusla registered childminder.

For further information relating to the National Childcare Scheme please visit

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