Check if you are eligible for two-year-old funding, how to apply, what you are entitled to, what to do if your income or circumstances change and how to access free early education within Hull and the East Riding.
If eligible you can have up to 15 hours of free early education and childcare for 38 weeks of the year during school term time (570 hours in total).
Some childcare settings or childminders may be able to stretch the hours over school holidays so you may access fewer hours over more weeks. The hours can be split between two childcare settings or childminders.
Your two-year-old may be able to attend free early education and childcare giving you the chance to do some training or study or take a part-time-job. Or if you just need a few hours a week to spend with your younger children, this could be for you.
For your two-year-old, you can be confident they are receiving quality early education and childcare helping them with their early learning and giving them new experiences with other children.
Currently all three and four-year-olds are entitled to free early education and childcare before they start school. This is now on offer to some two-year-olds. Research shows children who go to a high quality early education and childcare provider make good progress with their language, physical and social development. When the time comes for them to go to school they are better prepared and this advantage stays with them right through school and into adulthood.
Your child is entitled if one of the criteria in the three lists below applies:
Eligible criteria (no application required)
If you haven’t received a letter or require further information and advice, contact the FISH team on (01482) 396469 or email email@example.com.
Eligible criteria (proof required)
If one of the above criteria applies to you, you will need to send in proof of the criteria to firstname.lastname@example.org, you will then receive a letter from East Riding of Yorkshire Council confirming your child is entitled with a start date.
Eligible criteria (application required)
If one of the above applies to you, you are eligible and will need to complete the application (see next question and answer down).
You can apply online:
Completing an online application form
You can also apply by contacting the FISH team on:
Tel: (01482) 396469
or printing and completing a paper application form below:
Leaflet and application form - English (pdf 3mb opens in new window)
Leaflet and application form - Latvian (pdf 370kb opens in new window)
Leaflet and application form - Polish (pdf 530kb opens in new window)
Leaflet and application form - Bulgarian (pdf 878kb opens in new window)
Leaflet and application form - Lithuanian (pdf 733kb opens in new window)
Leaflet and application form - Marathi (pdf 930kb opens in new window)
Leaflet and application form - Russian (pdf 2mb opens in new window)
Leaflet and application Form - Portuguese (pdf 572kb opens in new window)
Latvian A4 poster 15 hours free childcare for two-year-olds (pdf 389kb opens in new window)
Lithuanian A4 poster 15 hours free childcare for two-year-olds (pdf 389kb opens in new window)
Polish A4 poster 15 hours free childcare for two-year-olds (pdf 389kb opens in new window)
Portuguese A4 poster 15 hours free childcare for two-year-olds (pdf 389kb opens in new window)
Russian A4 poster 15 hours free childcare for two-year-olds (pdf 389kb opens in new window)
You will receive a letter within 2 weeks confirming whether your child is entitled and with a start date. If you have not heard anything in this time please contact the FISH team on (01482) 396469.
Please keep hold of this letter as you need to take it along to your chosen childcare setting or childminder as proof that your child is eligible. You also need to take your child’s birth certificate to confirm they are the right age to start and proof of your address.
If you are told that you are not eligible for Two Year Funding but you are able to show evidence that you should be eligible, you must visit your local Children Centre and arrange to complete the confirmation of eligibility form.
Please note: Only certain childcare settings and childminders who are rated 'Good' or 'Outstanding' by Ofsted and have been approved by the Local Authority can offer two-year-old funded places. Please contact FISH on (01482) 396469 to help you find a setting near you.
You should apply as early as possible during the term your child turns two.
After you have applied you will be sent a confirmation letter with the date that your child can start their Free Early Education place. This date will be the start of term after you have applied.
Once you have received a letter confirming your child is eligible for funding it will not be withdrawn even if your income or circumstances change.
Your child can attend any Ofsted registered day nursery, preschool, some nursery schools, schools, independent schools or childminders which have been judged ‘good’ or ‘outstanding’ following an Ofsted inspection and have been approved by the Local Authority.
Please call FISH on (01482) 396469 or visit the FISH Family Service Directory to search for childcare settings in your area who offer two-year-old places.
FISH directory - search for childcare settings offering Two-year-old Funded Places (external East Riding website)
You can read the latest Ofsted inspection report for the childcare setting you are considering by visiting the Ofsted website
Ofsted Website - find an inspection report ( external website)
There is no guarantee your child will be able to attend the childcare setting of your first choice. If you have not been able to find a place with a ‘good’ or ‘outstanding’ childcare setting in your area which meets your needs or you want help with finding a childcare setting, please call the FISH team on (01482) 396469.
If you are claiming help towards childcare costs through the childcare element of Working Tax Credit you need to inform HMRC (0345 300 3900) as soon as possible before your child starts as you cannot claim help for free early education and childcare. If you delay informing HMRC you may be paid too much and will have to pay it back. You may also be liable to a penalty of up to £300 if you do not report the change within the time limit of one month. You can still claim the childcare element of Working Tax Credit for any additional childcare you pay for outside of free early education and childcare.
Parents may be able to use their free early education across the entire year, this is called the 'Stretched Offer'
The annual Free Early Education entitlement per child starts from the Autumn Term (so should be calculated from 1 September to 31 August).
The stretched offer is for children who take up their funded entitlement and want to spread their free hours across more of the year. The ‘Stretched Offer’ is not to be confused with spreading a parent’s bill over 12 equal monthly payments, as the ‘Stretched Offer’ relates only to Free early education, not to any hours paid for.
Parents should discuss the hours they would like to take with their childcare provider as not all providers offer the ‘Stretched Offer’
*Some of the stretched offer models mean the child will not be able to access the full funded entitlement across the year. Parents must be made aware before they agree to a stretched offer that they will not receive their full entitlement, using some of the models above they may lose up to 3 minutes per termly week of their full entitlement.
Some providers may charge for meals, snacks or optional extras as these may not always be included within the funded entitlement. If you take more than your free early education hours there will be a charge from the provider for these additional hours. Please check with your provider for full details of any additional charges.
Your child will be entitled to 15 hours free early education for three and four-year-olds from the term after their third birthday until they start school. Your child may also be entitled to the extended entitlement, for more information about this please visit 30 hours free childcare page.
In the first instance, it is usually best if you discuss your concerns with your childcare provider or the person in charge. If you are a parent or carer and cannot resolve your concern through discussion, you can make a formal complaint to the provider. All providers should have a complaints procedure in place that is published and accessible for parents, who are not satisfied their child has received their free entitlement in the correct way, as set out in the 'East Riding of Yorkshire Council Provider Agreement for free early education and childcare for two-three and four-year-olds'.
For a summary of the terms of the agreement please see section 5 of the Parental Agreement, which your childcare provider should have asked you to complete:
Parental Agreement (pdf 60kb opens in new window)
If you are unable to resolve your concern directly with the provider, you can follow the council's complaints procedure. Childcare providers should make parents aware that they can take their complaint to the council.
If you wish to take your complaint to the council you should contact the Families' Information Service Hub (FISH) on (01482) 396469 to give the details of your complaint. The complaint will then be passed onto an officer in the Early Years Service.
The officer will contact both yourself and the childcare provider within 10 working days to gather full details and any documentary evidence that may be required, (such as copies of invoices or the signed parental agreement and declaration form).
The council will reply in writing to both the parent and childcare provider, no later than 10 working days after gathering all relevant information, setting out their assessment of the situation and stating whether the actions of the provider are in accordance with the provider agreement.
If you are not satisfied with the way in which your complaint has been dealt with by the Local Authority or believe the Local Authority has acted unreasonably, you can make a complaint to the Local Authority Ombudsman. These complaints will only be considered when the local complaints procedure has been exhausted.