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30 Hours Free Early Education Entitlement

School Children in a Class

On 2nd February 2016 the Childcare Minister announced £13 million of funding which will allow some councils across the country to deliver 30 hours per week of free childcare for parents of 3 and 4 year-olds.

Wigan, Staffordshire, Swindon, Portsmouth, Northumberland, York, Newham and Hertfordshire Councils have all been chosen to pilot the new initiative from September 2016.

The core group of councils will be supported by 25 others, who will look specifically at innovative ways of making sure childcare is accessible to as many parents as possible.

Their experiences will then be used to support the full roll-out for all areas (including St.Helens) in September 2017.

All three and four year-old's are already entitled to 15 hours of free childcare a week, and this is also extended to the most disadvantaged two year olds.


We are currently consulting Childcare Providers in St.Helens on our proposed local Early Years Funding Formula for 2017/18 following the publication of the Dept for Education's consultation response on the National Early Years Funding arrangements. If you are a childcare provider operating within St.Helens and would like to feedback on the consultation then please complete the online survey.