When and how do I apply for 2 year old funding?

When can my child have a free place and when should I apply?

Two year old children who meet the eligibility criteria will be able to access up to 15 hours of early education a week, from the term following their second birthday until the end of the term in which they turn three years old. At that point your child will become eligible for 3-4 year old funding.

Children who turn 2 between Apply by You can start receiving your free hours from
1 January and 31 March End of March April after the child's second birthday
1 April and 31 August End of July September after the child's second birthday
1 September and 31 December End of December January after the child's second birthday

You can apply for funding up to two months before your child's second birthday.

How to apply for a 2 year old place

If eligible, the funding starts at the beginning of the term following your child's second birthday.

You will need to provide information about you and your partner (if you have one), including:

  • How much you spend on childcare
  • Any benefits you or your child get
  • Your income

Check your eligibility for free early education for your 2 year old and apply online

Downloadable application for free early education for your 2 year old

When you have chosen the early education provider(s) that you want to use, they will give you a parent declaration form to fill in and give back to them. This must be completed accurately and in full for you to be able to access the free hours. If you are using more than one provider you will need to complete a form with the same information for each.

Once your application has been processed we will notify you of the outcome either by email or post. You will only be able to claim your free hours from the date your application is approved.