The Two Year Old Offer...

Children are eligible to receive free Early Year’s Education Funding from the start of the term after their 2nd birthday for a maximum of three funding periods.

Parents/carers cannot apply before the start of the funding period in which the child’s second birthday occurs.

Once approved the entitlement to 2 year old funding lasts until they go on to the Early Years Entitlement for 3 and 4 year olds even if your financial circumstances change.

You can qualify if one parent or carer is receiving one of the following:

  • Income Support
  • Income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance (JSA)
  • Income-related Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) Universal Credit
  • Tax credits and has an annual income of under £16,190 before tax
  • The guaranteed element of State Pension Credit support through part 6 of the Immigration and Asylum Act
  • The Working Tax Credit 4-week run on (the payment you get when you stop qualifying for Working Tax Credit)


A 2-year-old can also get free early education and childcare if any of the following apply:

  • They are looked after by a local authority
  • They have a current statement of special educational needs (SEN) or an education, health and care (EHC) plan
  • They get Disability Living Allowance
  • They’ve left care under a special guardianship order, child arrangements order or adoption order

Parents must check their eligibility for the entitlement to Early Years Education Funding for their 2-year-old. Parents will need their National Insurance number, date of birth, name and child’s details. Eligibility can be checked online ( or you can call 0345 155 1013.



  • This can only be used with a registered childcare provider judged good or outstanding by OFSTED. Our nursery is not yet OFSTED inspected but we will be registered until this happens.
  • Government has limited session times between 7am – 7pm.
  • The government has restricted funded hours to a maximum of 10 funded hours per day and a minimum of 2.5 hours a day to protect children’s wellbeing and support a positive early education experience.
  • The funded hours can be split between a maximum of two childcare providers (for example a pre-school and a nursery)
  • Funded hours can be stretched through the year (up to 52 weeks) and not just restricted to 38 weeks

Speak to your nursery manager to understand nursery opening hours and how this entitlement is being implemented at your setting.



  • If you are eligible, you should have received a letter from the local authority informing you of this, simply take this to the nursery manager who will help you with the next steps to take.
  • If you feel you are eligible and have not received a letter, you can use the Childcare Calculator


You can call the contact number listed above. You will need the following information:

o Your name
o Address
o Name of child and details
o National Insurance Number

You should be informed immediately during this conversation if you are eligible and will be issued with a reference number, this will be followed up in writing. You will then need to complete a declaration with your nursery manager, during which you will agree a start date and sessions (subject to availability)


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