Eligible working families whose children will be aged between 9 and 23 months old on 31 August can now apply to receive 15 hours childcare starting from September 2024.

Find out more information on the Childcare Choices website

Early Years

Latest News

Childcare ChoicesFrom January 2024, eligible working parents of 2 year olds will be able to register to access up to 15 hours funded childcare a week starting from April 2024.

This is the first stage of the expanded government funded childcare offer for eligible working parents, extending to all children from 9mnths-2yrs from September 2024.

By September 2025 all children of eligible working parents under the age of 5 will be entitled to 30 hours funded childcare.

Who will be eligible?

Working parents who individually earn £8,670 but less than £100,000 adjusted net income are eligible. For couples, the rules apply to both parents, so both must earn at least £8,670 and neither can earn more than £100,000.

How to apply?

The government announced that the portal for applying would open on 2nd January 2024, however Childcare Choices recommend parents apply between 15 January-28th February to avoid having to re-confirm their code prior to April. For more information about this and other offers and to find out if you’re eligible follow the link to the Childcare Choices website or call the HMRC Childcare Service helpline on 0300 123 4097


We are aware that some parents are experiencing difficulties with the application process, please do signpost them to the HMRC number above who will advise. As an LA we have no authority on this process and currently have no additional information to that which has been published on Childcare Choices.

Please print and display the following poster in your setting for families to use.

Steps to starting school

Steps to starting school

The DfE’s Early Years recruitment campaign launched on Friday 2nd February 2024.

The campaign aims to highlight the difference EY professionals make to children and how rewarding working in the sector can be.

The campaign will direct applicants to use the Department for Work and Pensions’ Find a Job platform to search for EY roles in their area. The DfE are asking for your support to ensure as many EY vacancies as possible are listed on Find a Job ahead of the campaign launch. To upload your vacancies go to Find a Job and click on the employer tab at the top of the page.

Please watch these video tutorials to help you create an employer account, and post any current or upcoming roles in your setting. You should use the term ‘early years’ in the title of your job adverts and select ‘Education jobs’ for the job category.

The Find a Job service is free to use and will ensure your vacancies are seen by a large pool of candidates. Please note this will be in addition to the free advertising serviceEarly Years Jobs we offer on our website.

To read more, please click here.

The Childminder Start-up Grant Scheme is now open for applications using this link. This will be available to all new childminders who have completed their registration on or after 15th March 2023. Individuals who have previously been registered as childminders and wish to re-register into the sector may also apply for the scheme. There must be at least a 12-month gap between the date of their previous registration being cancelled and their new registration being finalised.

As previously announced, we will offer £600 to new childminders registering with Ofsted, and £1200 to new childminders registering with a childminder agency. £1200 grants will be paid in two instalments, with a 6-month limit on claiming the second instalment. Childminders must apply for the grant within two months of registering as a childminder, or within two months of the Scheme launching.


Eligibility Criteria

Applicant guidance

Application process

As announced in the 2023 Spring Budget, the government is investing £289 million to support the expansion of wraparound childcare. In October 2023 we published the wraparound childcare handbook for local authorities.

Guidance will be published on GOV.UK for schools and trusts on their role in providing wraparound childcare to children of primary school age shortly. This guidance will also offer a practical guide for setting up wraparound provision on a school site.

You can email wraparound.programme@education.gov.uk with any enquiries about wraparound childcare.

There are 2 statutory EYFS frameworks: 

  • EYFS statutory framework for childminders 
  • EYFS statutory framework for group and school-based providers 

Providers are responsible for ensuring they follow the current version of the framework for their provider type.

To read more please click the link Early years foundation stage (EYFS) statutory framework - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)

Measles cases are rising across the country, with over 102,000 children starting primary school in England being at risk of catching the disease. The DfE are asking education settings to share key messages from the NHS about MMR / measles and how to get vaccinated.

The Back to school MMR Guidance from the NHS includes information to share, as well as example social media posts which can be found here: NHS Vaccine Poster and NHS MMR Poster.

Measles is highly infectious and if left unvaccinated nine out of ten children in a classroom/setting can catch the disease if just one child is infectious. Please share these resources with colleagues, parents, and where suitable, community organisations to increase awareness and encourage parents to get their children vaccinated.

For children born between 01/09/2019 and 31/08/2020:

  • 11am on 1 November 2023 – Portal will open for applications

  • 11.59pm on 15 January 2024 – Portal will close

  • From 11am on 16 April 2024 – those who applied via the portal will be notified of their school offer

  • From 2pm on 16 April 2024 – parents will be able to access the portal to accept their school offer

For parents who did not apply online an email or letter will be sent to them on 17 April.

Please can we ask you to remind parent/carers to apply for their childs' school place:

Nursery letter

Childminder letter

Starting school 2024 leaflet

The Early Years Newsletter is a publication the Early Years team creates to assist with providers keeping up to date with any and all changes in the Early Years world.

23 May 2024

16 May 2024

9 May 2024

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