All 3 and 4 year olds become eligible for the Funded Early Education entitlement the term after their third birthday and are entitled to 570 hours of childcare which is 15 hours per week for 38 weeks out of the 52 week year.
In addition, 3 and 4 year olds of qualifying, working parents in England may also be able to access a further 570 hours of funded childcare; this means 3 and 4 year olds could receive a total of 30 hours funded childcare per week over for 38 weeks out of the 52 week year, providing they meet the government eligibility.
To qualify, each parent (or the sole parent in a lone parent family) will need to earn, on average, at least the equivalent of 16 hours on the national minimum wage per week and no more than £100,000 per year. Self-employed parents and parents on zero-hours contracts will be eligible if they meet the average earnings criteria. Families where one parent is not in paid employment (or neither parent works) will usually not be eligible for the additional 15 hours. There are exceptions for parents who are on parental, maternity, paternity, adoption or sick leave. Parents who are studying or in training will not be eligible unless this is combined with paid work which meets the minimum average earnings threshold.
To find out more please visit the Childcare Choices website.
Some children may be entitled to Government funded 15 hours a week at a nursery over a period of 38 weeks. For more information please visit: Help paying for childcare: Free education and childcare for 2-year-olds - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)
We are registered for and accept payments from Tax-Free Childcare accounts. Tax-Free Childcare is a more accessible alternative to the Employer Childcare Voucher scheme offering tax efficient savings when paying for your nursery fees. Tax-Free Childcare will be open to all qualifying parents, unlike childcare vouchers which can only be bought by people whose employer offers the scheme. It is a scheme by which the government will top up a designated childcare bank account by 20p for every 80p deposited, up to a maximum of £2,000 per child per year. It is the responsibility of the parent to ensure the Tax-Free Childcare payments are set up in line with the terms of the Bright Little Stars Contract.
Tax-Free Childcare can be used alongside the 15 and 30 hours funded entitlement to Early Years Education for 3 and 4 year olds and will support families with their childcare costs.
To find out if you are eligible or for more detailed information and how to register, please visit the Government Childcare Service website.