Children aged 3 and 4
Every child is entitled to receive a free place from the term after their third birthday and children continue to receive their free place until they start the reception year at school. You don’t need to apply for the free place, your provider will automatically enrol your child into the scheme, but you will need to complete a Parental Declaration form to confirm when and where your child is taking up the free place.
What does the free early education cover?
A free place means that children can access a total of 570 hours of free early education each year.
You can take your free place either termly (over 38 weeks i.e. 15 hours per week) or spread over the year (47.5 weeks i.e. 12 hours per week), if available at your chosen childcare provider.
Free sessions cannot be less than 2.5 hours or more than 10 hours in any one day.
Bromley Council pays your chosen provider directly for the free place that you receive.
You do not have to pay towards a free place and providers are not allowed to charge you any difference between their own prices and the money received from Bromley Council.
You do not have to buy additional time or services such as lunches or uniform if your child is accessing only the free place.
What you may need to pay for
A free place is free but be prepared to receive a bill if your child attends a setting for extra time in addition to the free place i.e. child attends 9am to 12.15pm (5 days a week for a 14 week term) and the setting charge £5 for the extra 15 minutes – you can expect a bill for £350 for the term.
If you buy extra time in addition to your free place, any bill/invoice you receive should be clear and show the amount charged for the extra time – it must not show the money received from Bromley Council deducted from the total bill.
Need more help?
Find out who to talk to
Contact the Information, Advice and Support Service for free, impartial information, advice and support for parents and carers of children with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND). Support is also offered to children and young people with SEND. They can also help provide information in a non-web format.
Call: 020 8461 7630
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