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Tánaiste’s After-School Childcare scheme has solved nothing – McLellan

16 April, 2015


Note: PQ relating to this press release is below.

Sinn Féin TD and Spokesperson for Children Sandra McLellan has outlined how Tánaiste Joan Burton’s much heralded After-School Childcare scheme has solved nothing on the childcare issue, with only 267 children using the scheme instead of the 6,000 promised places in 2012.

Deputy McLellan, responding to figures given in response to a Parliamentary Question to the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs, said; 

“Figures given in response to a parliamentary question to the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs show that a shockingly low number of only 202 parents are availing of the After-School Childcare (ASCC) programme. 

“When this scheme was launched with great fanfare in 2012, it was to have funds of 14 million per year allocated to it. This allocation was to provide over 6,000 part time after school child care places for the children of low income parents.

“However despite the desultory uptake due to huge cuts in the scheme’s funding, Tánaiste Joan Burton continues to fly the flag for this scheme in numerous media interviews and in the Dáil, portraying it as a success story of this Government.

“Even today the Tánaiste mentioned the scheme, justifying cuts in the lone parent allowance in response to questions raised by Mary Lou McDonald.

“The scheme is typical of the Government’s ‘big announcement, no action’ style of politics. It betrays Fine Gael and the Labour Party’s real commitment to childcare, and casts doubt in the minds of parents about this Government's authenticity in addressing childcare issues. 

“It certainly puts serious doubt into my mind what the Minister perceives to be a successful initiative. This certainly wasn't one. This Government made "Increased access to subsidised childcare and after school places" one of its Government Priorities in 2014 for the remaining term. How does the lack uptake of this initiative speak to this Government now?”

QUESTION NOS:  416 & 417
DÁIL QUESTIONS addressed to the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs (Dr. James Reilly)
by Deputy Aengus Ó Snodaigh
for WRITTEN ANSWER on 15/04/2015  



*  416.  To ask the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs the total number of children and households availing of the Afterschool Childcare Scheme..

                                                                                         - Aengus Ó Snodaigh

For WRITTEN answer on Wednesday, 15th April, 2015.

*  417.  To ask the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs the number of child care providers participating in the Afterschool Childcare Scheme, by county..

                                                                                         - Aengus Ó Snodaigh

For WRITTEN answer on Wednesday, 15th April, 2015.

 
REPLY.

The total number of children and the number of parents availing of the After-School Childcare (ASCC) programme and the number of child care providers participating in the programme, as requested by the Deputy, are shown on the attached table.

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