Working Tax Credits
The Working Tax Credit includes a specific element to support the cost of registered or approved childcare for working parents. The childcare element can help with up to 80 per cent of your eligible childcare costs.
For more information on tax credits see their website including the childcare element http://www.hmrc.gov.uk/childcare/taxcredits-guidance.htm or phone the tax credits helpline 0845 300 3900.)
Free early education for two, three and four year olds
All three- and four-year-olds in England and some two-year-olds are entitled to 15 hours of free early education a week for 38 weeks of the year.
Three-year-olds become entitled to this free place in the school term following their third birthday:
Children born between 1 April and 31 August are eligible on 1 September following their third birthday
Children born between 1 September and 31 December are eligible on 1 January following their third birthday.
Children born between 1 January and 31 March are eligible on 1 April following their third birthday.
Some two-year-olds are also entitled to a free early education place. The two-year-old places are based on the child’s circumstances or on your family income. Places are currently allocated on the same criteria as free school meals, and your Family Information Service will be able to advise you on whether you meet the criteria.
The free early education entitlement can be used over three days per week for five hours per day, or over five days a week for three hours per day for at least 38 weeks of the year.
Childcare providers are being encouraged to offer the places more flexibly, meaning that you may be able to stretch the free sessions over more weeks of the year by using less hours each week, or using the 15 hours over a minimum of two days per week. Speak to your childcare provider to see if they can offer you this flexibility.
You can use your free place at a nursery, pre-school, children's centre or with a childminder, but not all providers offer the free places.
You do not need to pay anything for these places and you cannot be forced to pay for meals or activities. You can choose to pay for additional services, such as meals or additional hours of care. If you choose to use more childcare and are working, or studying you may be entitled to help with your childcare costs.
3/4 year olds may be entitled to 30 hours free funding. Pleace check your eligibility on the childcare choices website. if your child is entitled to the 30 hours you will be given a voucher code which is used to access the funding.
EYFS Statutory Framework
The Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) sets standards for the learning, development and care of children from birth to 5 years old. All schools and Ofsted-registered early years providers must follow the EYFS, including childminders, preschools, nurseries and school reception classes.
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