Wednesday 17 October 2018

Fears that crèches might increase prices in wake of childcare boost

‘I think it’s great for a lot of families around Ireland who’ll benefit’
‘I think it’s great for a lot of families around Ireland who’ll benefit’

Ryan Nugent

A MOTHER-of-one hopes a rise in payments from the Affordable Childcare Scheme (ACS) won't prompt crèches to increase their prices.

Despite the band of eligibility for ACS increasing from a net income of €47,500 to €60,000, Dee Roberts (36) said after doing the maths, her family still might fall just outside this bracket.

She does not expect the change to affect many of those who already avail of childcare.

She said that this would particularly be the case for families with more than one child in a crèche.

However, she said the change will have huge benefits for many parents who may be currently availing of alternative child-minding arrangements.

She said the latest measures by Children's Minister Katherine Zappone are a step in the right direction.

Dee and her husband, Mark McCarthy (40), currently pay €860 a month in crèche fees for their son Elliot, who will turn two next month.

"I think it's great for a lot of families around Ireland who will probably benefit hugely from the change in the threshold," she said.

"It'll make more sense now for people to be going back to work, and having their children in registered childcare is important.

"The only thing that I would have concerns over is the same thing that happened last year, which is that a lot of crèches saw the opportunity to put up their fees," she added.

She said any fee increase last year for admin costs should negate the need for this to happen again, and she does not expect her particular crèche to have a price increase.

Irish Independent

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