NCS – National Childcare Scheme

The National Childcare Scheme (NCS) aims to improve children’s outcomes, support lifelong learning, make work pay, reduce child poverty and tangibly reduce the cost of quality childcare for thousands of families across Ireland. The NCS establishes an equitable and progressive system of universal and income-related subsidies for children aged between 24 weeks and 15 years.

From October 2019 it will replace all previous targeted childcare programmes with a single, streamlined and user-friendly Scheme to help parents meet the cost of quality childcare.

The Scheme is suitable for children, in the necessary age bracket, who are attending any participating Tusla registered childcare service, including any Tusla registered childminder.

There will be 2 subsidies available under the National Childcare Scheme:

1. Universal Subsidies are available to all families with children under three years old. This subsidy is not means tested.

2. Income Assessed Subsidies. This subsidy is means tested and will be calculated based on your individual circumstances. Your rate will vary depending on your level of family income, your child’s age and educational stage, and the number of children in your family.

Applications for the NCS are due to open in October 2019. You can find out more information below.