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Detailed Description of the Qualifications Essay

Full Day Care

This is a structured care service where children attend for more than 5 hours per day and which may include a sessional pre-school service for pre-school children not attending the full day care service. Providers typically care for children from 3 months to 6 years. Some services may also include an after-school facility, typically for children from 4 to 12 years of age. In full day care, sleeping arrangements and food preparation must meet standards laid down by the Health Service Executive (HSE) and the Child Care(Pre-school Services) Regulations 2006. Providers include day nurseries and crèches. These services mainly meet the needs of parents who are involved in work, education and training and cater for the broadest age group of children. Full Day Care provisions can be private or community based. Structures can be based on voluntary boards of management, limited companies, private ownership or companies with investors.

Childcare Assistant

Childcare assistants must hold a certificate for a major award in childcare/ early education at a minimum of level 5 on the National Framework of Qualification (NFQ) of Ireland or an equivalent nationally recognised qualification.The minimum qualification under the ECCE Scheme is a full FETAC Level 5 ( previously NCVA level 2) award or equivalent on the National Framework of Qualifications. Childcare assistants work under supervision and within the line management system of the childcare service. Desirable levels of experience range from 1 to 2 years relevant experience in childcare post qualification. Childcare assistants work together with other childcare staff to ensure safety and well-being of the children in their care and to implement and adhere to the standards and policies laid down by management and the Child Care( Pre-School Services) Regulations 2006.

Childcare assistants have a clear understanding of the Child Protection Policy of the childcare service and participate in its implementation. Childcare assistants are responsible for ensuring that activities in each session allow the children to experience creative, imaginative, physical, social and cognitive play. Childcare assistants require an excellent knowledge of child development and record the progress of each child on daily basis. Childcare assistants require excellent communication skills in dealing with children and parents and to participate in a team.

Childcare assistant have to know Aistear as it helps them plan for and provide enjoyable and challenging learning experiences, so that the children who have access to this curriculum can grow and develop into competent learners who have loving relationships with others. Childcare assistants have to use Siolta in conjunction with the Aistear curriculum framework. Childcare assistants are required to treat all information they receive with the strictest confidence and professionalism. The job requires a high level of physical activity.

Childcare assistants are required to attend regular meetings to discuss curriculum, activities and child development. They are also required to attend relevant training courses and childcare network meetings on an ongoing basis.


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