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30 hours funding

From September 2017 the Government are introducing an eligibility based additional 15 hours of free childcare for 3 and 4 year olds. This means that all three and four year old children will access the universal 15 hours entitlement but some children will be able to access an additional 15 hours - if their parent(s) meet the proposed eligibility criteria.

In order to prepare to be able to meet the needs of families and children it is important to gather information of the potential number of families in our school community that will be eligible and what their needs would be with regards to deciding how they would use the additional hours.

We would greatly appreciate your support in responding to the survey by acessing the link below. The response can be anonymous and if you give your details they will not be used for any other purpose than the collation of information for the introduction of 30 hours of childcare.   Any data published from responses received will always be anonymous.

Thank you for your help – please complete the responses by Friday 31st March.

Background information

The free hours offer

All 3 and 4 year olds currently receive 570 hours of free early education or childcare a year, this is based on 15 hours a week for 38 weeks a year and is a universal offer which is the child’s entitlement. The additional hours being introduced from September 2017 are based on the parent(s) of the child meeting an eligibility criteria. If the eligible the child will be able to an additional 570 hours, a total of 1140 hours per year. The maximum number of hours that can be claimed each week is 30 hours, but the hours can be spread (stretched) over fewer hours per week for more weeks, e.g.   22.8 hours a week for 50 weeks a year. 

Schools will not have to offer the additional hours themselves but may choose to work with other providers to give parents flexible options.

Proposed eligibility criteria

Both parents/carers resident in a household or sole parent in a single parent household currently work and each earns at least the equivalent of 16 hours work per week at the, relevant minimum wage (currently £115.00 for over 25 year olds which equates to £5,980 per year) and under £100,000 per year total income

Where parents are self- employed or on a zero or variable hours contract average earnings will be assessed.

Where one parent is in receipt of benefits relating to a significant caring role or DLA and the other parent works the family will also be eligible if work earnings fall within the range.

Some examples of not meeting eligibility criteria

  • Parent 1 earns £50,000 a year. Parent 2 does not work
  • Sole parent does not work
  • Parent 1 earns £120,000 a year, parent 2 earns £10,000

Some examples of meeting the eligibility criteria

  • Parent 1 earns £30,000 a year, parent 2 cannot work and receives Disability Living Allowance
  • Sole parent earns £12,000 a year
  • Parent 1 earns £90,000, parent 2 earns £60,000

For further information about the 30 hours funding please refer to the Richmond council website

If you have any further questions regarding the 30 hours funding which has not been answered on this page or the Richmond Council page please send an e-mail to and we will try to answer any questions you may have.