Free childcare is available for eligible 2 year olds, for 15 hours a week during term time.
Your child will have the chance to have fun, play, learn socialise and make new friends.
If your child is eligible, they can take up a place at the start of the term following their second birthday.
To access Free Early Learning for children aged two, you must be getting one or more of the following benefits or credits:
- Income Support
- Income-based Jobseeker's Allowance
- Income-related Employment and Support Allowance
- Support under Part VI of the Immigration and Asylum Act 1999
- The guaranteed element of State Pension Credit (from April 2005)
- Universal Credit - if you and your partner have a combined income from work of less than £15,400 a year after tax
- Child Tax Credit where the household income is no more than £16,190
- Working Tax Credit where the household income is no more than £16,190
- Working Tax Credit 4 week run on (the payment you get when you stop qualifying for Working Tax Credit)
Or your child must
- Be in receipt of Disability Living Allowance
- Have a current statement of SEN or an Education, Health and Care plan
- Have left care through special guardianship or an adoption or residence order
- Be a looked after child (eg, foster child)
- Be a child of Zambrano Carers (right to reside in the UK under European law as the primary carer of a British child or dependent adult)
- Be a child of a family with no recourse to public funds (NRPF) with a right to remain in the UK on grounds of private and family life under Article 8 of the European Convention on Human Rights;
- Be a child of a subset of failed asylum seekers (supported under section 4 of the Immigration and Asylum Act 1999 – ‘the 1999 Act’).
If you are not in receipt of one of the above benefits/credits you will not be eligible to apply.
The date you can start a funded place depends on your child's birthday.
When can your child start?
|1 January to 31 March||
The beginning of Summer term on or after 1 April
|1 April to 31 August||
The beginning of Autumn term on or after 1 September
|1 September to 31 December||
The beginning of Spring term on or after 1 January
Please note that once you have created a Citizens Account you will need to add your 2 year old child in order to continue with your application.
If eligible you will be given a code, please take this code to your chosen provider.
If you have applied previously and require your funding letter or need help with your application, please call 0121 569 4914.
If you are eligible, you will be sent a confirmation letter which you can take to any of the approved childcare providers.
Allocation of your 2 year old funded place will only be considered and accepted by the provider once they have seen the 2 year old confirmation letter. Please note funding cannot be backdated.
The Brokerage Service provides help to families who are unable to find a 2 year old funded place. They will discuss your needs with you and provide advice and information on the availability of places in your area.
If you need any help finding suitable childcare then contact us and we’ll do our best to help you.
If your child has specific needs further support is available from our specialist Brokerage officers
If you have already applied but have lost your confirmation letter please call us on 0121 569 4914 or contact us and we will do our best to help you.
How to make a complaint about the free childcare for 2, 3 and 4 year olds or issues with the quality of the setting
We are aware that sometimes things don’t work out and that you may encounter difficulties such as:
- applying for a free childcare funded place
- issues with the quality of the setting
- reconfirming their 30 hours eligibility code
So that these issues can be sorted out as quickly as possible, please see below who you will need to contact depending on your concerns:
Complaints in relation to funding issues
If you're not satisfied you have received your free entitlement in the correct way first:
- Talk to the setting as they'll have a complaints procedure.
- If it's not resolved, lodge a formal complaint through the providers complaints procedure.
- If you're still unhappy after exploring these options, email details of your complaint to firstname.lastname@example.org
Complaints and issues with your 30 hours eligibility code
If you have a complaint or have any issues regarding your 30 hours eligibility code then please contact HMRC directly on 0300 123 4097
Complaints about childcare quality
If the complaint relates to quality issues, first speak to your setting. If it isn't resolved, contact Ofsted on 0300 123 1234