Early Start Programme


The Early Start Programme is a pre-school project established in 1994 in 40 primary schools in designated areas of urban disadvantage.

The programme is a one-year intervention scheme to meet the needs of children, aged between 3 years and 5 years, in September of the relevant year, who are at risk of not reaching their potential within the school system. The project involves an educational programme to enhance overall development, help prevent school failure and offset the effects of social disadvantage. Parental involvement is one of the core elements of the programme in recognition of the parent/guardian as the prime educator of the child and to encourage the parent/guardian to become involved in his/her child's education.

How to Apply

This scheme is not open for applications. 


Email: earlychildhood@education.gov.ie 

Address: Department of Education and Skills, Early Years Education Policy Unit, 2nd Floor, Block 1, Miesian Plaza, 50 - 58 Baggot Street Lower, Dublin 2. D02 XW14

Phone: (076) 110 8967