The offer will begin from the term following your child's third birthday until the September following their fourth birthday (when they start in reception class at school).
Parents can take up the Childcare Offer at any point during this time period, so long as they are eligible to do so. Parents should be able to access the Offer from whichever point they wish during that term, providing their child was eligible from the beginning of that term, or earlier. This includes parents who move into RCTCBC or gain employment.
Please note – you will only be eligible from the date stated on the confirmation letter you receive from the Childcare Offer team once your application has been processed.
Can I use more than one childcare provider?
Yes you can use up to TWO registered childcare settings per day in addition to their Foundation Phase Nursery (FPN) education setting in any given day.
Can I accrue my hours?
No. During term time, parents will be provided with a maximum of 30 hours per week of combined FPN education and additional funded childcare. Parents can choose how much of the additional funded childcare to take up. Any hours not used in a week will be lost.
For holiday weeks, parents can use up to a maximum of 30 hours per week of funded childcare. Any hours not used in a holiday week will be lost.
How will the offer work outside of term time?
The childcare offer will cover up to 48 weeks per year. FPN education is available for up to 39 weeks per year; therefore eligible parents will be able to access 30 hours of funded childcare for the remaining 9 weeks of the year. This leaves 4 weeks per year with no funded provision.
Eligible children accrue 3 weeks of holiday provision per term from the date that they have been confirmed as eligible. Parents can access their school holiday provision whenever they chose. However, it is the parent’s responsibility to find a provider that offers the provision that best suits their needs. Holiday weeks are used in week long blocks. Any hours not used in a holiday week will be lost.
If your application for the Childcare Offer is refused and you disagree with this decision, you are able to request a review. The link here will tell you what you need to do, and by when.