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Free Childcare Places

3-4 Year-Olds

All 3 and 4 year olds, and some 2 year olds, in England can get free early education or childcare, usually 15 hours a week for 38 weeks of the year.

From September 2017 some working parents will be eligible for an additional 15 hours of free childcare for their 3 and 4 year olds. These families will be able to access up to 30 hours of free childcare a week.

If you follow the link "3 & 4 year old eligibility checker" on your right, it will take you to the gov.uk website, where you can apply for the 30 free hours.

Who is eligible

You may be eligible for 30 hours of free childcare if your circumstances are as follows:

  • Both parents are earning or expect to earn the equivalent to 16 hours at National Minimum or Living Wage over the coming three months.

  • This equates to £120 a week (or about £6,000 a year) for each parent over 25 years old or £112.80 a week (or about £5,800 a year) for each parent between 21 and 24 years old. (These rates were correct in March 2017. National Minimum/Living Wage rates change every April. Please check the Gov.uk website for up-to-date information on the National Minimum Wage (Follow link on the right). 

  • This applies whether you are in paid employment, self-employed or on zero hours contract.

  • The parent (and their partner where applicable) should be seeking the free childcare to enable them to work.

  • Where one or both parents are on maternity, paternity, shared parental or adoption leave, or if they are on statutory sick leave.

  • Where one parent meets the income criteria and the other is unable to work because they are disabled, have caring responsibilities or have been assessed as having limited capability to work.

  • Where a parent is in a ‘start-up period’ (i.e. they are newly self-employed) they do not need to demonstrate that they meet the income criteria for 12 months.

  • If a non-EEA national, the parent must have recourse to public funds.

Who will not qualify?

A parent will not meet the criteria when:

  • Either parent has an income of more than £100,000
  • Either parent is a non-EEA national and subject to immigration control (and has no recourse to public funds)
  • One parent is non working

You can start claiming the free child care the term after your child turns 3. The date you can claim will depend on when their birthday is.

Child’s birthday

When you can claim

1 January to 31 March

the beginning of term on or after 1 April

1 April to 31 August

the beginning of term on or after 1 September

1 September to 31 December

the beginning of term on or after 1 January

At North Islington we offer flexibility in the way we offer the Government funded 15 hours such as 5 mornings, 5 afternoons or 2.5 days subject to availability. How we offer the 30 hours free childcare will be finalised later this term.

2 Year-Olds

Some 2 year-olds in England can also get free early education and childcare.

You must be in receipt one of the following:

  • Income Support
  • Income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance (JSA)
  • Income-related Employment and Support Allowance (ESA)
  • Support through part 6 of the Immigration and Asylum Act
  • The guaranteed element of State Pension Credit
  • Child Tax Credit (but not Working Tax Credit) and have an annual income not over £16,190
  • The Working Tax Credit 4-week run on (the payment you get when you stop qualifying for Working Tax Credit)
  • Working Tax Credits and earn £16,190 a year or less

If you meet the above criteria then you will need to complete a separate form, by following the link "2 Year Old Free Learning" which will take you to the Islington's website where you can fill the form in online.  Once you receive confirmation back from Islington Council stating your eligibility status then please bring this letter in to us where we will make a copy of it and can then consider your child for a place at North Islington.

You can start claiming the free child care the term after your child turns 2.

We currently have the capacity to offer twelve 2 year-olds a part time place.

We currently have 4 x places for free 15 hours for Eligible 2 year olds born between Sept - Dec 2015.    Please call  North Islington on 020 7527 4844 if interested.