Nursery Education funding NEF
Nursery Education Funding is available to children who are aged 2 to 4 years of age. Two year old funding (THINK 2) is targeted at disadvantaged children, more information is available at www.staffordshire.gov.uk, all 3 and 4 year olds have an entitlement to Nursery Education Funding, the funding covers all settings whether they are maintained, private, voluntary, governor or independent.
Children are entitled to a funded place in the term after their third birthday.
'Providers must allow parents to access their entitlement completely free at the point of delivery.To access a funded place parents must not be asked to purchase additional hours or food. It is the parents choice to take up any additional hours and the choice of a cooked meal'.
Parents are able to split funded hours between two providers, these providers must work together to ensure the needs of the child are met. Children who leave during a term to attend a new setting take their funding with them, which is remaining.
Providers are responsible that parents sign and understand the conditions of the privacy notice.
The maximum hours a childcare provider can claim for 3 and 4 year olds is over 38 weeks , with a maximum of 15 hours per week, over a minimum of 2 days.
No available session should be shorter than 2 hours or longer than 10 hours.
The hour lunch break can be included as part of the funded hours. Where it is reasonably practicable for the setting, parents can choose to pay for a healthy home cooked meal or provide a healthy packed lunch from home. Providers can make a reasonable charge for the healthy hot meal provided.
If you wish to take up additional sessions, hours or a hot meal, you will be charged for the time on an hourly rate and a set price for lunch.
Term dates are:
1st January - 31st March (Spring)
1st April - 31st August (Summer)
1st September - 31st December. (Autumn)
For example, if a child is 3 years old between 1st January - 31st March, they will be eligible for a free place from 1st April. These dates are fixed and independent of school term dates.