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15 hours free childcare and early learning for 2 year olds

If you are in receipt of any of the following benefits, you may be able to get 15 hours of free childcare and early education for your 2 year old.

  • Income Support
  • Income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance (JSA)
  • Income-related Employment and Support Allowance (ESA)
  • the guaranteed element of State Pension Credit
  • support through part 6 of the Immigration and Asylum Act
  • Universal Credit and not working
  • Universal Credit, and your household income is £15,400 a year or less after tax, not including benefit payments
  • Your incomes is £16,190 a year or less, and you
    • are in receipt of child tax credit but not working tax credit
    • are in receipt of working tax credit but not child tax credit
    • are in receipt of the working tax credit 4 week run on

You are not eligible if you are claiming working tax credits and child tax credits at the same time.

If you are not in receipt of any of the above benefits, you may still qualify if you meet one of the following criteria listed below. 

If so, please call the Early Years and Childcare Team on 020 8583 6421 or email 2y@hounslow.gov.uk

special educational need or a disability
If your child has an Education, Health and Care plan (EHCP) or receives Disability Living Allowance (DLA).
We can also support you in finding suitable childcare if you are having difficulties.
adopted or in foster care

If your child:

  • Is looked after by the local authority
  • Has left care under a special guardianship order
  • Has a child arrangement order
  • Has an adoption order

no recourse to public funds

You are able to get free childcare if:

  • You are a Zambrano carer. A Zambrano carer is the primary carer of a British citizen child or dependent adult where requiring the primary carer to leave the UK would force that British citizen to leave the European Economic Area (EEA)
  • You are a family who have a right to be in the UK on grounds of private and family life under Article 8 ECHR (European Convention on Human Rights)
  • You are a family receiving support under section 4 of the Immigration and Asylum Act 1999
  • You receive support under Section 17 of the Children Act 1989

what isn't covered?

Please make sure you are aware of any additional charges before your child attends your chosen childcare provider.

The 15 hours free childcare offer is not intended to cover the costs of meals, other consumables (such as nappies or sun cream), additional hours or additional activities (such as trips). Providers may charge a fee for these additions. 

However, you must not be required to pay any fee as a condition of taking up a 15 hour place, and must be offered alternative options. If you choose to pay for these, it is an arrangement between you and the childcare provider.