TAMESIDE parents are being urged to apply now if they want to take up the Government’s offer of 30 hours free child care for three and four years olds.Currently all 3 and 4-year-olds in England can get 570 hours – or 15 hours a week for 38 weeks - of free early education or childcare.From September 2017, working families of 3 and 4-year-olds may be able to double this to the equivalent of 30 hours a week for 38 weeks.
Tameside Council is encouraging parents to apply as soon as possible if they want their additional funding to start ready for the new term in September.
To find out more and make an application please visit: https://www.childcarechoices.gov.uk/
The scheme, designed to help working families and those wishing to return to work, is available to parents who earn on average at least £120 a week each - equal to 16 hours at the National Minimum or Living Wage.
People who are on maternity, paternity or adoption leave - or are unable to work because they are disabled or have caring responsibilities - may still be eligible. Anyone who expects to earn £100,000 or more won’t be entitled to the funding.
Parents can apply to use the hours - 1,140 hours in total - flexibly at participating nurseries, playgroups, childminders and Sure Start Children’s Centres.
Tameside Council Executive Member for Lifelong Learning Cllr Lynn Travis said: “There is flexibility about how families use the extra hours of free child care and it will hopefully be a huge helping hand to those parents who work.
“In many cases it will also give children the benefit of additional time in an early educational setting, helping to give them the best start in getting school ready.”
For further information about general childcare please contact Tameside Family Information Service on 0161 342 4260