Council offers free child care places for two-year-olds

The Golden Ticket

Posted on: 7 March 2016

Devon County Council is encouraging parents to take up the opportunity to have free child care for their two-year-olds.

The Council provides funding to childcare and early years education providers for families in receipt of certain benefits so they can have a free place.

The Council says that many parents are unaware of the funding, or of the benefits that child care can provide.

In an effort to make people more aware, the Council is writing to families who are eligible for the funding to offer them free childcare.

‘Golden Tickets’ are being posted to eligible parents next week, who can redeem their tickets in return for up to 15 hours a week child care during term time, or 570 hours free child care over the year, at approved day nurseries, school nurseries, child minders and pre schools.

It represents a saving of £2,781.60 in childcare fees, based on the funding rate from Friday 1 April.

The ‘Golden Tickets’ were first used by the Council to promote the funding last term, and they have since seen a big increase in the take up of places.

Funding is available for children whose family receive certain benefits, have a household income under £16,190, or if the child has a disability, special educational need or if they are adopted or placed under a residency order.

Councillor James McInnes, the Council’s Cabinet Member with responsibility for early years provision, said:

Cllr James McInnes“We currently provide funding for about 1,925 free childcare places, but we know that there are some families who are eligible for it who may not be aware.

“This promotion is aimed at people who we know are eligible for the funding, and it’s designed to encourage them to take up the placements.

“The funding provides an opportunity for children to make new friends and learn through play in specially approved childcare settings. It is also intended to support parents who want to use the time to access training, study or return to work.”

If parents do not receive a Golden Ticket and feel that they are eligible, they can check their own eligibility online  or by calling 01392 385530.

A list of early years providers is available at on the Council’s website.

4 comments on “Council offers free child care places for two-year-olds

  1. Laura says:

    Im discusted that we are not entitled because shock horror… we both work! Yet childcare is so expensive i have to rely on family instead! But ur ok if ur on jobseekers and have no job cus u can b child free for 15hours a week and do as u please! Whats the country turning into!!

  2. Jess Williams says:

    Bit annoyed at this. My partner and I have twin girls who turn 2 next week. We applied because we recieve the 4 week run of tax credit but because we earn over £16000 as a household we dont get it! I work part time in the eveni gs because we cant afford to put the girls into nursery and have no family to have them. How about you reward the parents who want to work and need the help and not to those who dont need it.

  3. Kath says:

    Yeah thanks for that, my little boy will miss out because both me and my partner work and apparently earn too much for us to be entitled. Yet we can’t afford to send him to pre school. Seems a bit unfair for him to miss out especially as we both pay taxes, and have never claimed anything. I’d be better off not working and so would my little boy, not only would he benifit from pre school, he’d have his mummy at home with him the rest of the time. It seems so unfair.

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