Help with Childcare Costs

Government Funding

We understand that childcare costs can be a concern for parents. This booklet is information on the available funding and money saving options the Government provides for parents, and how it is applicable to Blue Sky.

Funding availability can be dependent on the age of your child.

 

2 year old funding

If your child is 2 years old you may able eligible to take up 15 hours of funded childcare, starting from the new term following your child’s 2nd birthday. 

The funding is for 15 hours for 38 weeks, coming to a total of 570 hours per year, that you can use flexibly with one or more childcare provider.

At Blue Sky we will allow you to ‘stretch’ the hours over 51 weeks, using fewer hours per week

 

3 and 4 year old funding

For 3 and 4 year olds there is the standard 15 hours funded childcare.

Starting from the new term following your child’s 3rd birthday. The funding is for 15 hours for 38 weeks, coming to a total of 570 hours per year, that you can use flexibly with one or more childcare provider.

 

ADDITIONALLY

For working families with 3 and 4-year-old children there is 30 hours of funded childcare funding available. 

Children are eligible for the funding from the beginning of January, April or, September follow in their 3rd birthday 1 following your child’s 3rd birthday.

Your child may be entitled to 30 hours of funded childcare or early education for 38 weeks. Adding to a total of 1,140 hours per year.

 

Stretch your funding

Blue Sky will allow you to ‘stretch’ the hours over 51 weeks, using fewer hours per week. Talk with our Admin Team to find out more.

 

Am I eligible?

You could be eligible for this is you reach one of the following criteria:

  • You, and any partner, each expect to earn (on average) at least £125 per week (equal to 16 hours at the National Minimum or Living Wage). 
  • You, or your partner, are on maternity, paternity or adoption leave, 
  • You’re unable to work because you are disabled or have caring responsibilities

 

You can’t get 30 hours funded childcare if either you, or your partner, individually expect to earn £100,000 or more.

To keep your 30 hours funded childcare place you need to check your details are up to date every 3 months.

Both these funding options are for standard childcare and don’t include covering the cost of consumables. See ‘What isn’t covered?’ section for more information.

 

What isn’t covered?

Government funding is for standard childcare only

This means that consumables and other additions are not covered by the Government. We absolutely sympathise with the parents as the Government’s strap-line “30 hours of FREE childcare” is misleading, which is why Blue Sky never calls the pre-school offering Free. Should you wish to use our consumables there will be a charge you are responsible for paying. 

The following is NOT covered by Government funding:

  • Meals
  • Nappies 
  • Sun cream
  • Etc (ask our team if you are unsure if something is covered)

 

Here at Blue Sky we have a set fee for each of these additions. Our consumables charge is currently £1.10 per funded hour.

Additionally you will be charged for either of the following:

  • Additional hours
  • Additional activities (such as day trips outside Pocklington) 

 

You will not be required to pay any fee as a condition of taking up a funded place.

There is an option for those families who do not want pay for consumables to bring these items in instead, if this is your preference then please refer to the non-consumables policy.

 

providing your own consumables

For those of you opting to provide your own consumables rather than pay for consumables to be provided by Blue Sky it remains essential that the children, whilst in our care, receive the correct care while making sure that the care team are not excessively burdened accommodating your choice.

 

Every Day Essentials 

Should you wish to use your own consumables than you need to bring in daily essentials that are NAMED. We recommend that daily you send your child with:

  • Tissues
  • Wet wipes
  • Bottle of sun cream
  • Nappies
  • Nappy Cream

 

Meals 

Pack ups, while a parents choice and responsibility, should help promote a healthy balanced diet and as such we ask you follow our Health Pack Ups guidelines in our meal section.

 

More Funding Aid

 

Tax Free Childcare

For working families, including the self-employed, there is the availability of Tax Free Childcare for children under 12 (or under 17 if disabled). 

You can receive up to £2,000 per child per year – that’s up to £500 every three months. 

 

How does it work?

If you’re a working parent with children under 12 (or under 17 for disabled children), you can open an online account to pay for registered childcare.

The government will top-up the money you pay into the account. For every £8 you pay in, the government will add an extra £2. You can receive up to £2,000 per child per year – that’s up to £500 every three months. 

If you have a disabled child, you can receive up to £4,000 per child – that’s up to £1,000 every three months.

 

Am I eligible? 

Your child will be eligible if you meet one of the following criteria: 

  • You, and any partner, each expect to earn (on average) at least £125 per week 
  • You, or your partner, are on maternity, paternity or adoption leave 
  • You’re unable to work because you are disabled or have caring responsibilities 

 

You can NOT get Tax-Free Childcare if either you, or your partner, individually expect to earn £100,000 or more. 

 

How can I benefit? 

Tax-Free Childcare can be applied to other childcare funding to aid in paying for your children to attend nursery. 

You can use Tax-Free Childcare at the same time as:

  • 15 hours free childcare
  • 30 hours free childcare

 

You can’t use it with:

  • Universal Credit
  • Tax Credits

 

Tax Credit for Childcare

Am I eligible? 

Working families in with children under 16 are eligible for Tax you can claim back up to 70% of your eligible childcare costs. 

 

How can I benefit? 

Depending on your income, you could get up to £122.50 a week for one child or £210 for two or more. If you cannot make a new claim for Tax Credits, you may be able to apply for Universal Credit instead. 

 

Universal Credit for Childcare

Am I eligible? 

You can apply for Universal Credit for Childcare if you, and any partner, are working, or you’re due to start work, and are claiming Universal Credit. 

Whether you can claim will depend on your personal circumstances. 

 

How can I benefit? 

You can claim back up to 85% of your eligible childcare costs for children under 17. You could get up to £646 a month for one child, or £1,108 for two or more. 

You can’t claim Universal Credit at the same time as:

  • Tax credits
  • Tax-Free Childcare

 

Support While you study

 

Care to Learn

You can apply for weekly payments from ‘Care to Learn’ to help while studying.

The scheme is available for publicly-funded courses in England. This includes courses in:

  • schools
  • sixth-forms in schools
  • sixth-form colleges


You must be aged under 20 at the start of your course.

 

Discretionary Learner Support

If you’re aged 19 or over, on a further education course and facing financial hardship, you could get Learner Support.

You apply to your learning provider (for example your college) for Learner Support. How much you get depends on your circumstances. This can help pay for childcare while you’re in further education, for example, if you’re studying for an NVQ, BTEC or PGCE.

 

Childcare Grant 

You can apply for a Childcare Grant-  if you’re in full-time higher education to pay for childcare costs for children under 15 (or under 17 if they have special needs).

You may be eligible for the Childcare Grant to help with your childcare costs if you:

  • are a full-time higher education student
  • have children under 15, or under 17 if they have special educational needs

You must be eligible for student finance to apply for a Childcare Grant.

 

more information

For more information visit: 

https://www.childcarechoices.gov.uk/