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Things to Know

Nursery Education Grants

All three and four year olds in the UK are entitled to 15 hours of completely free early education a week for 38 weeks of the year. This applies until they reach compulsory school age which is the term following their fifth birthday. Your little one will be eligible for this grant from the term after their third birthday.

The flexibility of the grant depends on your provider so check with your provider when choosing which hours and times you would like to pay for with your grant. These hours will probably have to remain the same every week. Bear in mind too that the lunch hour can also be counted as one of your free 15 hours per week – it is a good idea to ask about this when you first talk to your provider. Please note that the grant can also be spread over two providers.

The nursery education grant is available at a range of day nurseries, crèches, child centres, nursery schools, play groups and classes, pre-schools and even accredited child-minders, but do check with your nursery or day nursery as they do not all provide the grant. All providers must be registered with Ofsted.

Some nurseries may cost more than your funding or you may use more hours. If this is the case, it will be offset against your bill.

For more information on how to apply for a nursery school grant and the scheme itself, visit
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