The Department has worked to support Early Learning and Care (ELC) and School Age Childcare (SAC) services throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. In addition to providing funding to ensure the continuity of care and sustainability of services, the Department has modified the compliance process to take account of public health advice and to reduce the administrative burden on providers at this time.
As services have a duty to claim funding in line with scheme rules and funding agreements, the Department also has a duty to ensure funding is being dispersed responsibly and for purposes intended to protect Exchequer Funding. For this reason, compliance checks will continue on a staggered basis during this restrictive period, beginning with checks on TWSCS funding from 2020. The checks will be carried out remotely and in full compliance with public health advice. Services will be required to submit relevant documents upon request to Pobal who will then assess them. This may involve additional correspondence where clarifications are sought. Services that have been directed to close by the HSE or that have previously participated in a TWSCS verification will not be expected to participate in the new round of TWSCS checks. These checks will commence on 22th February 2021.
Advance notice will be given as compliance checks on other funded schemes commence in coming weeks. In accordance with public health advice, the compliance checks will be carried out remotely under level 3, 4 and 5 restrictions and will be desk based unless it is absolutely necessary to make onsite visits.
We want to take this opportunity to thank services in advance for their cooperation and participation in the verification checks in these exceptional times.
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