27 May, 2019 - Chief Inspector Invites Views to Inform Development of New Early Years Education Inspection – with a Particular Focus on 0-3

The Inspectorate of the Department of Education and Skills has opened a consultation to inform the development of an extended Early Years Education Inspection for the early learning and care sector. 

The Chief Inspector has briefed partners and stakeholders in the early learning and care (ELC) sector about plans to extend Early Years Education Inspection (EYEI) to include early learning provision for children aged under three years. 

The project plan for EYEI 0-6 is a direct response to the commitment in First Five: the Whole of Government Strategy for Babies, Young Children and their Families to ‘…pilot the extension of education-focused inspection to children under three’ (Goal D Action 2B). 

Dr Harold Hislop, Chief Inspector and Dr Maresa Duignan, Assistant Chief Inspector, Early Years provided an overview to stakeholders and partners of the project plan to realise this objective. Dr Hislop emphasised that the DES Inspectorate will listen to and take account of the expert advice and guidance available across the early learning and care sector in Ireland. The Chief Inspector emphasised the need to support and promote high quality provision and practice for children aged birth to six years. Details of the Inspectorate’s presentation are available on the DES Website at the following link - www.education.ie/en/Press-Events/Events/early-years-sector-briefing/early-years-education-inspection.pdf 

The listening and dialogue consultation phase will provide the foundation for developing an extended Early Years Education Inspection 0-6 Model. The draft arrangements for EYEI 0-6 will then be shared with stakeholders across the ELC sector for further comment and input. 

A dedicated email address has been set up to facilitate consultation with all stakeholders at each stage of the project plan. Submissions are welcome and may be emailed to: eyeisubmissions2019@education.gov.ie. As the project progresses, further information will be posted on education.gov.ie.


Notes -  

First 5 is a whole-of-Government strategy to improve the lives of babies, young children and their families. It is a ten-year plan to help make sure all children have positive early experiences and get a great start in life. The First 5 Strategy uses evidence to identify goals, objectives and the specific actions required from across Government to support children (and their families) in the early years of life. First 5 commits to major initiatives on family leave, children’s health services, parenting supports, child-friendly communities and Early Learning and Care services among a broad range of actions. The Strategy will significantly enhance early childhood and make a huge contribution to the lives of young children, society and the economy over the short, medium and long term.