Families with 2 year old children who meet the criteria below can apply for funding. We will pay for a place for up to 570 hours over the year at a registered childcare provider. A maximum of 15 hours per week is available.
Children become eligible in the funding period after their second birthday.
The funding periods are:
Spring 1 January to 31 March
Summer 1 April to 31 August
Autumn 1 September to 31 December
You can see more details about the entitlement on our Early Years Entitlement page.
Who is entitled?
Parents or carers who receive any of the following are entitled to funding for 2 year olds:
- Universal Credit
- Income Support (IS)
- Employment Support Allowance (Income Related) - not Contribution related
- Income-based Job Seekers Allowance (IBJSA) - not Contribution based
- Guaranteed Element of State Pension Credit.
- Support under Part VI of the Immigration and Asylum Act 1999
- Child Tax Credit with an annual taxable income (as assessed by HM Revenue and Customs) of less than £16,190
- Working Tax Credit with an annual taxable income (as assessed by HM Revenue and Customs) of less than £16,190
Children are entitled if any of the following applies to them:
- Children who are 2 and receive Disability Living Allowance
- Children who are 2 and have been adopted, or who have left care through special guardianship or child arrangement orders
- Children who are 2 and have a Statement of Special Educational Needs/Education, Health and Care Plan
- Children who are 2 and are looked after by the local authority
How to apply
There is an online form which can be completed by the parent or carer. You can print out and post a copy of the form by going to Families funding for 2 year olds page and clicking on the link in the Information and resources section, or you can phone us on 0300 123 2224 to request an application form.
What happens next?
Evidence will only need to be sent without prior request if an application is made and the child qualifies by receiving Disability Living Allowance. In this case, a copy of the latest award letter from the Department for Work and Pensions will need to be submitted before the application can be processed. We recommend attaching the evidence to the form at the time of application. If the parent is submitting the application online, they can send a copy to firstname.lastname@example.org or post a copy to Entitlements Team, County Hall, Taunton, TA1 4DY.
If the parent or carer is successful, they will be notified in writing and we will send them a list of approved providers in their area. Ask the parent or carer for their acceptance letter and a copy of their child's birth certificate or passport before offering them a funded 2 year old place at your establishment. If the date of birth on the letter is not the same as the date of birth on the legal documentation, contact us immediately on 01823 357039, as the child may not be eligible on the date stated on the acceptance letter.
Important: Only settings rated Good or Outstanding by Ofsted can take children that have been awarded funding for 2 year olds. Providers must apply to Somerset County Council in order to take funded 2 year olds. If parents or carers access more than the entitlement or any additional services at an approved provider, for example food, you will ask the parents or carers to pay for these services. If all the places have been allocated, the child should be placed on a waiting list and if a funded place becomes available at a later date, parents and carers must be notified.
If they have been offered funding for 2 year olds, this will continue, even if their circumstances change, until their child can claim the Early Years Entitlement. More information is available on our Early years entitlement page or by phoning 0300 123 2224 or by emailing email@example.com.
All applicants for funding for 2 year olds will be registered with the local Children’s Centre.