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Free Early Learning and Care for 2 year olds!

The government has made a long term commitment to funding Free Early Education for eligible 2 year old and from September 2013 Eligible families will be entitled to 570 hours, to be use flexibly across the entire year over no less than 38 weeks.


Children who meet the following criteria will be eligible for Free Early Education and can choose a provider from the pdf icon Directory of Early Years Providers and Childminders [133kb] that have been approved by the London Borough of Sutton to deliver high quality childcare and education.

  • Income Support (IS)
  • Income Based Jobseekers Allowance (IBJSA)
  • Income Related Employment and Support Allowance (IRESA)
  • Child Tax Credit
  • Guaranteed Element of State Pension Credit 
  • Support under part VI of the immigration and Asylum Act 1999
  • Universal Credit
  • Their families receive Working Tax credits and have annual gross earnings of no more than £16,190 per year
  • They have a current statement of SEN or and Education, Health and Care plan
  • They attract Disability Living Allowance
  • They are looked after by the LA
  • They have left care through special guardianship or an adoption or residence order

How to access your Free Early Education Entitlement:

  • Ensure you are receipt of any of the benefits stated above. Families who may be eligible should receive a letter from the Local Authority informing them of their eligibility.
  • Choose an approved child care provider from the Directory of Early Years Providers
  • Directly approach the childcare provider you have chosen to discuss admissions and requirements with the setting and adhere to their admissions procedure. A Parental Declaration form will need to be completed
  • The London Borough of Sutton will collate the Parental Declaration forms to check eligibility. The eligibility check result will be confirmed with the provider, to allocate a childcare placement.

When is my child eligible?

A child is eligible the term after their second birthday

A child born on or between will be eligible from:

Date of Birth

Autumn Term          

Spring Term               

Summer Term             

1st April - 31st August

1st September   

1st September - 31st December

1st January     

1st January - 31st March

1st April            

What is the offer?

For eligible families this entitlement is for 570 hours a year over to be used over no less than 38 weeks, which can be used in a number of ways:

  • 5 hours a day over 3 days of the week,
  • For 3 hours a day over 5 days of the week
  • Varied times over 2 or 3 days

What happens when my child turns three?

The free early education entitlement for two year olds will continue until the term after the child's third birthday, when they are entitled to 15 hours a week term time only under the Free Early Learning and Care for 3 and 4 year olds!.

Further Information

If you have any further questions please check the pdf icon Frequently Asked Questions for 2 year old funding [55kb] to see if they have already been answered, if not please contact the Sutton Family Information Service on 020 8770 6000 who will be happy to help.