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Open Day: School of Adult Education (VTOS)

Coláiste Íde offers a range of courses in Adult Education (VTOS) including areas such as Early Childhood Care & Education, Vocational Training Opportunities Scheme, Community Health Services and Health Services Supervisory Management. VTOS provides general education and training opportunities for unemployed adults by enabling them to retain their social welfare entitlements while in fulltime study and these courses facilitate suitable adults in acquiring qualifications for employment opportunities as Healthcare Assistants in residential and non-residential settings and Classroom Assistants or Special Needs Assistants within the education sector.

Course Director Deirdre Finneran explains our VTOS programme


Hear from our Healthcare Students

Frequently Asked Questions

I am a dependant on my partner's social welfare payment. Can I become a VTOS student?
Yes, if your partner is eligible for VTOS then you too are eligible, provided you are over 21. You may each attend programmes or you may attend even if your partner is not participating. You may still participate if your partner previously attended under VTOS.

Do I get grant while I am on VTOS?
You continue to receive your normal social welfare payment under VTOS. If you are on a Jobseekers' payment prior to VTOS your payment will be made by VTOS directly into your bank account. You also continue to receive any secondary entitlements you have, such as winter fuel allowance. While on VTOS you may work part-time, up to a maximum of 20 hours per week.

I am 21 in October 2022. Can I apply for a VTOS place then?
Unfortunately, this is not possible. You must be 21 years or older by your course commencement date (normally the middle of September). You are not eligible for VTOS unless you are 21when your course has started.

Are there any other financial supports available to me under VTOS?
Your course fees, examination fees and material requirements (like books, uniforms, or equipment) are all provided free of charge. The is a contribution of €4 per week meal allowance and a travel allowance, based on distance from your home to the college.

Which courses can I attend under VTOS?
Core VTOS programmes are only open to VTOS-eligible students. This means everyone is over 21 and eligible to attend. In Coláiste Íde the Core Classes are:

Early Childhood Care and Education Level 5
Early Childhood Care and Education Level 6
Community Health Services Level 5
Health Services Supervisory Management Level 6

Dispersed VTOS students are VTOS-eligible students who enrol in other PLC programmes in the college. You may apply for any of our fulltime PLC programmes.

Student Stories

Diane Dempsey - Childcare
"I returned to education to study Early Childhood Care and Education (ECCE) as part of a Vocational Training Opportunities Scheme (VTOS) in Colaiste Ide. From the onset, the support and encouragement that I received from the teachers in the college whilst studying for my Quality Qualifications of Ireland (QQI) Level 5 & 6 was second to none. Throughout my two years, the teachers in Colaiste Ide were invaluable in motivating me to learn and their dedication and belief in me helped to build my confidence as a student which in turn inspired me to apply for a BA (Hons) Degree in Early Childhood Education."

Read More Testimonials from our School of Adult Education (VTOS)
Places on our fulltime PLC programmes are available free of charge to VTOS applicants


Coláiste Íde College of Further Education Cardiffsbridge Road, Finglas West, Dublin 11

T 01 834 2333 / 01 834 2450 F 01 834 7242 E W

Funded by the Irish Government and supported by the European Union.

Colaiste Ide College of Further Education European Regional Development Fund Ireland's EU Structural Funds Solas CDETB - City of Dublin Education & Training Board