Working parents of 3 and 4 year olds may be entitled to 30 years funded childcare. Time is running out for parents to apply for their funding in time for the autumn term- don’t miss out on yours!
How does it work?
The 30 hours can be taken between 6am-8pm, but sessions cannot be longer than 10 hours. You don’t have to use the whole 30 hours if you don’t want to, but it doesn’t carry over from week to week.
You can split your 30 hours between providers, but no more than 2. Make sure to give your eligibility code to both settings if you do this. Both settings also have to be fully approved providers, meaning they’re registered by Ofsted or a Childminding Agency. It’s also worth knowing that not all providers offer fully funded places- although here at Tops we do!
Funding is primarily for 30 hours a week, over 38 weeks of the year. It may be possible to ‘stretch’ your funding across 52 weeks by having 22 funded hours a week.
Am I eligible?
All 3 and 4 year olds in England are entitled to 15 years funded childcare. Parents in work, receiving parental leave, sick leave or annual leave may be entitled to 30 hours a week funding. It’s super simple to find out if you’re eligible. Just go to www.childcarechoices.gov.uk and fill in their Childcare Calculator. There are other options for funded childcare, such as Tax Free Childcare. The online calculator will help you decide if the 30 hours funding really is the best option for you.
How do I apply?
Go to childcarechoices and fill in their online form- it’s that simple!
It takes about 20 minutes to fill in, and you find out if you’re eligible within 7 days. If you are, HMRC will send you a code which you need to give to your childcare provider. You’ll need to remember to reconfirm your eligibility every 3 months, by logging onto your online childcare account, otherwise you could lose your place.
You must apply for autumn term funding by the end of August, so don’t delay!
Want more information?
We have a very helpful page here giving loads of information on 2, 3 and 4 year old funding, as well as an instant childcare calculator.
For parents at Tops Wimborne, Tops Corfe Mullen, Tops Gillingham, Tops Wareham and Tops Christchurch, see our blog giving more information on funding available at these settings here