Early Year Entitlement Q & A from Thursday 8th February 2024 update meeting.

These are the responses from questions asked in the chat bar during the meeting. We are aware there were several questions around monthly payments, we are currently working with colleagues and will develop further information and guidance as soon as possible.

• Will the slides be accessible?
o Yes, these are now available for all to view on the Knowledge Hub
• I was wondering if there had been any discussion around averaging out the funding rate across all age groups? After reading on childminding forums this is being implemented by other LAs.
o Providing care for differing age ranges across the sector costs various amounts due to staffing ratios, therefore the Local Authority felt this was not an option.
• How is the EYPP paid termly?
o Early Years Pupil Premium (EYPP) is paid termly based on the National Insurance numbers of parent/s when headcount is submitted. Payments are made termly as eligibility can change.
• Are you removing voluntary from the provider agreement?
o Yes, as per the new Model Agreement Template 2024
• If we have already used the Parental Agreement in force now for those providing us with two-year codes, do we have to re-do them when the new agreement comes out?
o No, however we would expect the new ones to be used from September 2024
• I have several temporary codes and they don't seem to work on the checker
o If any providers have any issues with code, please contact the Families Information Service.
• Has the funding for AIS and EHCP been considered?
o Both AIS and EHCP funding come out of the High Needs Block, these are currently being considered within Specialist Services. We are convening a meeting to discuss this and will provide an update by the end of February.
• With regards the EHCP is there any way this can be utilised for PVI settings/childminders that work 51 or more weeks of the year to receive the EHCP funding for the weeks they are open rather than for 38 weeks of the year?
o Unfortunately, all EHCP funding is term time only as it is to support access to educational provision.
• Did you decide to go to monthly payments? And how will this work?
o Yes, we consulted on this as an option following feedback from PVIs and the majority of respondents selected this as their preferred approach.
o We are currently in discussions with our finance, performance, and payment teams as to how this will be rolled out. We will provide an update by the end of February.
• Debt help and support to get money owed? (Paid hours)
o Please check with your umbrella organisation (if you are a member) as some will support and do this on your behalf. If you need support in joining, please contact the team.
• For the 9-month funding, is it the term after their birthday they will be eligible?
o It is the term after they turn 9 months.
• Will there be any communication to parents that funding is paid 38 weeks and not 51 weeks of the year?
o Current communication states that some settings may choose to stretch funding over a certain number of weeks, this is up to the individual provider.
• In the provider agreement are we going to be told that we can't refuse people who want term time contracts only or people who want to do less than 10-hour days? Some childminders that work all year round may struggle with this.
o As an individual provider you are responsible for your own business model, however you may need to consider children with SEND as these children may find 10 hours too difficult. Allowing them to attend for fewer hours over more days is seen as a reasonable adjustment, as described in the 0-25 SEND Code of Practice and the Equality Act 2010.
• Could we investigate first aid trainers that are cheaper than the local council?
o Providers can use any individual accredited First Aid trainer if it meets Ofsted requirements. At least 6 hours must be face to face. More information is available on the Families Service Directory.
• Regarding vulnerable 2-year-olds - will there still be funding for disadvantaged 2-year-olds (like now with a different shorter code) or will they just get the £7.15 of new 2-year funding?
o All eligible 2-year-olds will be funded at the same rate, but via the 2 different application processes.
• Has anything changed regarding funding when caring for a family member?
o The revised statutory guidance has not made any changes to this requirement.
• If parents aren’t eligible as working parents for 2 years olds, should we direct them to FISH to see if eligible under another bracket?
o Yes, or visit for eligibility information.
• What is the Facebook page for providers please
• Would it be possible to have some training on the knowledge hub?
o Please speak to your EYDA on a visit.
• Is it possible to upload these documents onto the FB group as well as the Hub?
o As not everybody has Facebook, we feel it is better to store information on the Knowledge Hub platform for a consistent approach.

Early Years Supplementary Grant

Many thanks to those providers who responded to the Early Years Supplementary Grant Consultation to gather views on how to manage the 11p uplift on two-year funding. The outcome was as follows;

Standard 11p increase= 86.54%
Supplement Based = 11.54%
Other Option = 1.92%

The Local Authority finance team are in the process of calculating money owed for 2-year-old funded hours claimed from September 2023 and onwards. These additional amounts will be paid to the relevant providers along with the Spring Term 2024 estimate payments due to be made from the w/c 8th January 2024 onwards.

Confirmation of the date that eligible working parents will be able to apply for their codes to gain access to 15 hours of childcare per week for two-year-olds from April.

From 2 January 2024, eligible working parents will be able to apply for their 15 hours childcare for their two-year-old. Parents have until 31 March to apply for a code, with the best time to apply in mid-January to the end of February, in case they need to provide further information to support their application. Applications will be via the existing application webpage though obviously this is not accessible to two-year olds until January 2024
To apply for a childcare code each parent needs to be working and earning the equivalent of 16 hours a week at national minimum/living wage and under £100,000 adjusted net income per year. This means that each parents need to earn from just over £8,600 per year to be eligible for 15 hours a week of childcare during term time. 

More information on the range of childcare support available to parents can be found in the Childcare Choices toolkit, where they can explore the early education entitlements and other government help with childcare costs. 

Early Years Funding Rated 2024-25
Funding Announcements have been made for 2024-25 and these are available to view here along with the guidance behind the allocations
As in line with previous years, the Local Authority will follow its normal due processes to finalise and confirm the final funding rates for 2024/5. These will be confirmed and announced in February 2024.

Due to the introduction of the new entitlements and the publication of new guidance to local authorities associated with this, it may be necessary to consult with providers around proposed funding rates and additional supplements. If this is required, then this work will commence at the start of January 2024.

Early years and childcare providers judged inadequate or not complying with requirements at inspection

An explanation of what happens to those judged inadequate on the Early Years Register and those not meeting registration requirements on the Childcare Register.
Click Here

Guidance for Early Years settings who wish to make additional charges for funded places

We have seen a steady increase in concerns being raised by parents in relation to being charged for consumables by their childcare provider. The Early Years Provider Agreement has always stated childcare providers may charge for additional costs in relation to funded childcare places and this is acceptable practice and may cover a contribution towards various consumables. We are aware in most cases this has not been passed on to parents previously, however, given the current economic climate we can see why this is now something you are considering.

In order to ensure consistency, the Local Authority has developed a short guidance document in which information relating to these charges are listed, as well as a link to the Department for Education Guidance which also outlines what is acceptable.

Childcare Choices

Government help with childcare costs for parents. Whether you have toddlers or teens, you could get support.

Early Years Funding 2023 - 2024

Information for local authorities and settings about early years funding for the 2023 to 2024 financial year.