So what is this “funding” that nurseries and parents of young children talk about? Simply put, the government funds 15 hours of nursery education for children aged 3-5years during term time, which equates to 38 weeks of the year. As you might guess there are guidelines to be adhered to which have hitherto varied across Local Authorities but as from the Autumn, seem standardised. Here they are.
A child becomes eligible for funding the academic term following the child’s 3rd birthday. For instance a child with a birthday of 3rd March will receive funding in the Summer term; a birthday of 1st April with receive funding in the Autumn term. Funding goes directly to the childcare provider who must be registered with both Ofsted and the Local Authority. The childcare provider must give up to 15 hours free, irrespective of their normal hourly rate. Meals are not included, just the care. A child may use up to 10 hours in one day and the whole 15 hours across 2 days between the hours of 8am and 6pm.
Funding may be split across childcare providers providing the overall number of hours does not exceed 15 per week, for example 8 hours at Setting A and 7 hours at Setting B.
If you are a working Mum whose hours do not fall into term time only then “stretching” the hours over the whole year will even out nursery bills to avoid the higher costs of the non-funded months April, August and December. In this instance, funded hours works out at around 11.5 hours per week over 50 weeks.
As part of the Government’s initiative to extend early years childcare and education from this September up to 15 hours per week is funded for disadvantaged 2 year olds. For most areas application is through local children’s centre rather than the childcare provider.
You know, the best way to find out what we’re really like, is to come and see for yourself! Find us at Manor Farm Day Nursery, 76 London Road, Sandy, Bedfordshire, SG19 1DZ, 01767 681805 firstname.lastname@example.org
To book an appointment call us on 01767 681805 or book an appointment online and we’ll put the kettle on.