Increasing Childcare Support for Working Parents

We are pleased to announce an update to childcare funding that significantly benefits working parents. In order to help manage the challenge of balancing work and family life, the government is extending its childcare support.

Working parents will be eligible for up to 30 hours of funded childcare per week for 38 weeks of the year. This substantial support starts from when your child is just 9 months old and continues until they begin school.

Below, you'll find detailed information about the upcoming changes, structured to help you understand exactly what these changes mean for you.

For Eligible Working Families

Families with children aged 3 and older are currently eligible to receive 30 hours of funded childcare over 38 weeks of the year.

From April 2024:
Families with children aged 2 and older will be eligible to receive 15 hours of funded childcare over 38 weeks of the year.

From September 2024:
This eligibility extends to include families with children aged 9 months and older, who will then be able to receive 15 hours of funded childcare over 38 weeks of the year.

From September 2025:
Families with children aged 9 months and older will be eligible to receive 30 hours of funded childcare over 38 weeks of the year.

For Parents Who Do Not Meet Eligibility Criteria

Universal Funding:
All families with 3 and 4-year-old children will continue to receive 15 hours of funded childcare over 38 weeks of the year, with no changes to this existing provision.

For Parents of 2-Year-Olds Receiving Government Support: Families already receiving direct local authority funding for their 2-year-old children due to specific eligibility criteria will see no change in their funding arrangement.

Stretched Funding

At Little Ripley, we understand that every family's schedule is unique, and the need for childcare doesn't stop outside of term time. To support our families throughout the entire year, we offer the option to 'stretch' your funded childcare hours over 52 weeks, instead of the standard 38 weeks.

By opting for stretched funding, you gain greater flexibility in managing work and family commitments, ensuring childcare support aligns with your year-round needs.

Check Your Eligibility Online

To see if you qualify for these new childcare funding options, please visit This website provides a comprehensive guide to all government childcare and funding support. By entering your details, you can quickly find out which funding schemes you are eligible for, ensuring you make the most of the support available to your family.

Childcare Vouchers and Tax-Free Childcare

In addition to the funded childcare hours, there are two key schemes available to support families with their childcare costs: Childcare Vouchers and Tax-Free Childcare. Both schemes offer savings but are designed to benefit different types of families.

Childcare Vouchers

Childcare Vouchers are an employer-provided scheme that allows you to pay for childcare from your pre-tax salary. This can lead to savings, as you do not pay tax or National Insurance on the portion of your salary used to purchase vouchers. However, it's important to note that the Childcare Vouchers scheme is closed to new entrants. If you are already enrolled and receiving vouchers, you can continue to use this scheme as long as your employer offers it, and you remain eligible.

Tax-Free Childcare

Tax-Free Childcare is a government scheme open to eligible working families, including the self-employed. For every £8 you pay into your Tax-Free Childcare account, the government adds an additional £2, up to £2,000 per child per year (£4,000 for disabled children). This scheme is available for children up to the age of 11 (or 17 if the child has a disability) and is intended to replace Childcare Vouchers for new applicants.