There is a range of childcare providers available on the Islands:
- Five Islands Academy Nursery Class provides registered sessional pre-school education for 3 and 4 year olds. Families must enrol at the Five Island School the term before their child is due to start.
- Nurseries and childminders
You can check whether you could be eligible for a range of government childcare offers, including 30 hours extended entitlement offer, via Childcare Choices at: childcarechoices.gov.uk or the Childcare Calculator at: gov.uk/childcare-calculator. Those who could be eligible for 30 hours and/or Tax-Free Childcare will be directed to the digital childcare service to apply.
Funded Childcare for Two Year Olds
Some families may be eligible for 15 hours of free early learning and childcare please see Childcare Choices for further information.
Funded Three & Four Year Old Entitlement
Universal 15 Hours Entitlement
All 3 and 4-year-olds in England can get up to 570 hours of free early education or childcare over 38 weeks of the year (universal 15 hours entitlement). Its also possible to stretch your entitlement by taking fewer hours over more weeks of the year. You do not need to apply through the digital childcare service if you only want to claim the universal 15 hours entitlement for 3 and 4 year olds.
Extended Entitlement Funding
3 and 4-year-olds may also be entitled up to an additional 570 hours of free childcare over 38 weeks of the year (or fewer hours over more weeks “stretch”), a total of 1,140 hours. The offer is 30 hours over 38 weeks (term time) or you can “stretch” your hours (maximum of 1140 hours per year) over more weeks. For example:
- If your child attended a childcare provider for 51 weeks per year for 22 hours a week, you would use 1122 hours of your entitlement.
- If your child attended School nursery during term time for 15 hours per week and in the school holidays went to another provider for 15 hours per week (total of 51 weeks) you would use 765 hours of your entitlement.
Please see our ‘Parents Guide to 3 & 4 Year old funding on the Isles of Scilly’ and Eligibility Criteria info sheet.
Children are able to access the funding the term after their third birthday. You can apply up to 16 weeks before your child’s third birthday. If you intend to apply for the 30 hours extended entitlement we strongly urge parents to apply as soon as possible and speak to childcare providers regarding a possible place at their setting. If you do not have your eligibility code by the start of the term you wish your child to take up their place you will not be able to claim the funding until the following term.
The Parental Declaration Form should be completed in conjunction with your childcare provider, and the completed form returned to your childcare provider.
If you have any questions please do not hesitate to contact Children’s Services Team at firstname.lastname@example.org or 01720 424 496.
Tax-Free Childcare is available to working parents (including those self-employed) which can be used at the same time as 30 hours extended entitlement. Working parents of children aged under 12, or 17 if disabled, can use Tax-Free Childcare to pay for registered childcare. The Government will top-up the money that parents pay into the account. For every £8 parents pay in, the Government will add an extra £2. Parents can receive £2,000 per child per year, or £4,000 if disabled. It is not available to parents in receipt of tax credits, Universal Credit or childcare vouchers.
You will be able to apply for both 30 hours and Tax-Free Childcare at the same time through the digital childcare service by entering your details once. However if you only wish to apply for 30 hours extended entitlement, for example if you are receiving financial support through tax credits and only want to take up 30 hours, you can choose not to apply for Tax-Free Childcare (and keep your tax credits) as part of the application. For more information see Childcare Choices.
A Guide to Safe Babysitting is available to help parents make informed choices about babysitting.
Off Island Access
Funding for families from the off-islands to access services is available, for more information please contact the Children's Services Team.