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Don’t miss out on free childcare!

Published: 18 March 2021

For young children every experience is a learning opportunity.  Early years settings such as nurseries, pre-schools and child minders offer a variety of opportunities for children to learn.


Research shows that children who have had a high-quality early years’ experience achieve more as teenagers and beyond. 

This is not just about reading, writing and numeracy. Children learn about daily routines; they develop emotional resilience and social skills. Friendships with other children helps them build up their confidence and overcome shyness.

Some 2 year olds are eligible for 15 hours of free childcare which means they can benefit from time in an early years’ setting from the term after their 2nd birthday. You don’t have to take up all 15 hours, you might want to start with just a couple of three-hour sessions and build on this.

From the term following their 3rd birthday all children are entitled to 15 hours of free early years education / childcare a week.

Some working parents of 3 and 4 year olds are also eligible to receive additional hours up to a maximum of 30 hours a week and you could also qualify for tax-free childcare which could help pay for any additional hours. 

This could really make a difference to your childcare bill and while you are earning your child is receiving high-quality childcare.

Even if you are not working this free childcare could give you some much needed time to pursue employment opportunities or to recharge your batteries and have more energy to be a great parent. It’s also great for kids to be in an environment where they will learn and improve their social skills.

Our Cabinet Member for Young People Councillor Alex Dale said:

“I know times are tough for many families so I’m encouraging people to check their eligibility for free or tax free childcare, get a code and apply by visiting the Childcare Choices website.

“I’d urge families not to miss out on these schemes. The extra funding is worth between £2,500 and £3,000 per child per year which could help many families out financially.”

Check your eligibility for free or tax free childcare, get a code and apply by visiting the Childcare Choices.

For more information email free.childcare@derbyshire.gov.uk.