Free Entitlement Policy

What is Free Entitlement (FE)

Free Entitlement (FE) funding is provided by the government. The funding offers a free place with childcare providers (childminders, nursery or pre-school), allowing all children between the ages of 3 and 4 (and some children aged 2) to have access to good quality early years care and education.

Sessions available for Free Entitlement

Our FE sessions are available each day between 9am to 12pm and 1pm to 4pm Monday to Friday.
(Free Entitlement only places will only be available on a term by term basis after admissions policy criteria have been applied.)

What the funding pays for

The Universal FE funding pays for up to 570 hours per year of Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) education at approved childcare providers like us. This funding pays for the basic care and education element of the service we provide.

Parents where both partners work over 16 hours and are paid less than £99,999 each are able to claim for the Extended FE funding (known as 30 hours). This has to be claimed via the Childcare Choices website and the 10-digit code supplied to the setting. This entitlement has to be reconfirmed via the website every 3 months or the entitlement will be lost.

Parents who have a 2-year-old who qualifies for 15 hours FE can claim via the local authority website. They will receive a code to give to the setting. (Discretionary contribution does not apply to 2 years olds at this time but may in the future).

The FE funding however does not cover the other resources and services which we offer as part of our childcare service such as:

  • Transport by car to local activities and trips****
  • Materials outside of core EYFS requirements.
  • Prepared meals. **
  • Outings. ***
  • Stay and play sessions at local groups and Family Centres. ****

To provide the remaining parts of our service not covered by the FE funding we charge a discretionary contribution of just £1.08* per hour for FE hours. (Hours outside of FE sessions will be charged at the fully inclusive fee of £5.50 per hour.)

How will this be shown on our invoice?

Your FE hours will be shown as follows:

  • EYFS element of Free Entitlement (WSCC funded - (see FE policy) - £0.00
  • Resources contribution element for FE childcare (see FE policy) - £1.08

* In compliance with the WSCC Free Entitlement rules this element is optional but highly recommended. If you would prefer not to pay this contribution, please complete the optout form which is available on request and ensure that your child brings any materials required for the sessions booked. The discretionary contribution will be included unless you tell us you do not want it. The last thing we would want is for your child to feel excluded if the correct materials are not provided so in this event we will supply them and apply the discretionary contribution element to your invoice.
**Meals are charged at a subsidised £2.50 per day except when a full day is booked in which case meals are included (not on free entitlement funding).  The full price of a meal is £3.50 for lunch and £2.50 for tea and £2.50 for breakfast.
***Outings which required entrance fees will be invoiced as extras regardless of fee charging status.
***** Stay and play sessions, activities & trips may incur an entrance fee as well as a contribution of £0.20 per mile towards the mileage / transport. This may be compulsory as depending upon the group and numbers of other children cared for it is necessary to attend as a whole group.