Government funding for free childcare offers
Nurseries are set to receive £204 million as part of the Government’s promise to deliver the largest ever investment in childcare.
The plans, which were announced in the Spring Budget, are designed to remove barriers to support parents to return to work and help to grow the economy by making childcare more accessible.
Every area across the country is getting a share of the government funding which childcare providers can use to ease cost pressures such as staffing costs, training, and bills. Funding rates per child paid from September will increase from an average of £5.29 to £5.62 for three and four-year-olds, and from an average of £6.00 to £7.95 for two-year-olds.
From April 2024, eligible working parents of two-year-olds will get a new offer of 15 free hours per week of free childcare. From September 2024, eligible parents will get 15 free hours from nine months until their children start school, and from September 2025, they will get 30 free hours from nine months until the start of school.
Separately, the government has today confirmed plans to deliver its ambition for all parents of primary school aged children to access childcare in their local area between 8am and 6pm.
16 local authorities from Barnsley to Wiltshire have been selected to work with the government to develop plans for this universal provision, with some of these areas expected to be the first to rollout the wraparound care as early as summer 2024.
All local authorities will start to receive their share of £289 million in funding from January 2024 to support their delivery of the programme, with parents expected to see an expansion in the availability of wraparound care from September 2024.