Expanded Childcare Support from April 2024

image from childcare choices

Childcare support is expanding from April 2024. Find out more below.

Apply now to get 15 hours childcare for your 2-year-old to start in April

Applications for 15 hours childcare are now open for eligible working parents in England with a child who turns two on or before 31st March. Parents can apply for their hours on gov.uk to get their code and then share it with their childcare provider. To continue receiving the government support, they will need to reconfirm their details every three months on their gov.uk account.

From September 2024, 15 hours childcare will be expanded to eligible working parents in England with children between 9 and 23 months old. From September 2025, eligible working parents in England with children between 9 months up to school age will have access to 30 hours childcare.

This comes alongside the existing government childcare support, including 30 hours for 3- and 4-year-olds, Tax-Free

Childcare and Universal Credit Childcare. Parents might be able to use more than one offer to help with their childcare costs.

Childcare is also expanding for primary-school children – from September 2024, parents in England are expected to see an expansion in the availability of childcare in their local area before and after school, that runs from 8am until 6pm or later, also known as ‘wraparound childcare’. If you are eligible for Tax-Free Childcare or Universal Credit Childcare, you can use the support to help pay for wraparound childcare.

Visit Childcare Choices to see what support you might be eligible for, now and in the future, so you can juggle work and life: Childcare Choices | 30 Hours Childcare, Tax-Free Childcare and More | Help with Costs | GOV.UK

Updates from Childcare Choices

Below information from - Childcare Choices 

The upcoming expansion

Starting from April 2024, existing childcare support will be expanded in phases. By September 2025, most working families with children under the age of 5 will be entitled to 30 hours of childcare support.

The changes are being introduced gradually to make sure that providers can meet the needs of more families. This means that:

From April 2024, eligible working parents of 2-year-olds will be able to access 15 hours childcare support.

From September 2024, 15 hours childcare support will be extended to eligible working parents of children from the age of 9 months to 3-year-olds.

From September 2025, eligible working parents of children under the age of 5 will be entitled to 30 hours of childcare a week.

Like the existing offer, depending on your provider, these hours can be used over 38 weeks of the year (during school term time), or up to 52 weeks if you use fewer than your total hours per week.

Sign up for more details about the upcoming expansion from April 2024, as well as how and when to register for support with childcare costs.

Budget 2023: Everything you need to know about childcare support

Hundreds of thousands more working parents will be supported through an extension of the free childcare on offer, more than doubling the current support in place. This will help mums in particular to stay in work and keep the economy growing.

We know that childcare is one of the biggest costs facing working households, which is why we want to make it cheaper and more accessible, to reduce the barriers preventing some parents from going back to work. Find our more - click here

Before and after school childcare: Everything you need to know about wraparound care

We’re supporting working families through the UK government’s biggest ever investment in childcare, to make it more affordable, available and flexible.

As part of this announcement, we’re expanding wraparound care for primary school children across England by increasing the number of places available, to support working families.

But what exactly is wraparound care? We explain everything you need to know, from what it is to how you can access it. Click here to find out more

Date set for new childcare offer applications - 2nd January 2024

Applications for the first wave of the rollout of the largest ever expansion of free childcare for working parents will open on 2 January, the government has announced today (Wednesday 29th November).

Expanded 2-year-old funding offer from April 2024

  • Eligible working parents who already have a Tax-Free Childcare account can apply for a 15 hours or 30 hours code within their next reconfirmation window.
  • As part of the reconfirmation process, parents will be required to share information including their child’s age, and their current financial eligibility.
  • To be eligible for a code for the new 2-year-old entitlement from April 2024, parents will need to earn the equivalent of 16 hours a week at national minimum wage and less than £100,000 adjusted net income per year. More information can be found here.  
  • Parents applying for funded childcare from April have until 31st March to apply.
  • For 2-year-olds or children who will turn 2 before 1st April 2024, and whose parents are otherwise eligible, the recommended time to apply for April is 15th January and 28th  February, although the application window is open from the beginning of January until the 31st of March.
  • Parents will be able to complete an application 16 weeks before their child turns two. If they apply before this time, they will only be able to apply for Tax-Free Childcare.
  • Further information about eligibility and when to apply can be found here

Page last reviewed: 15/04/2024

Contact the Team

Family Information Service

fis@reading.gov.uk 0118 937 3777 OPTION 2 0118 937 3777 OPTION 2

SEND Local Offer

localoffer@reading.gov.uk 0118 937 3777 OPTION 2 0118 937 3777 OPTION 2

Adult & Carers Support

CSAAdvice.Signposting@reading.gov.uk 0118 937 3747 0118 937 3747
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