Funding for childcare providers (NEF)
Funding for your nursery
We may be able to help your nursery receive entitlement funding.
The maximum number of hours per child is 15 hours per week over 38 weeks (570 hours per year) or less if using the all year round provision. The following criteria apply to all claims:
- A maximum of 10 hours per day
- Between the hours of 6am and 8pm
- A maximum of two providers may be used
If a child is claiming the extended funding they will be eligible for up to 15 hours universal funding and 15 hours extended funding per week for a maximum of 38 weeks.
The table below indicates when a child will be eligible for Nursery Education Funding.
|Child born between||Funding commences from|
|1 January to 31 March||Summer term*|
|1 April to 31 August||Autumn term*|
|1 September to 31 December||Spring term*|
|*Please note term dates vary|
Contact us for more information.
Information for settings
Please find the link for the Early Years Portal below:
If you are a new setting and require a login or have forgotten your password, please email the NEF team at firstname.lastname@example.org.
There are two headcount periods within each term. If you have submitted your headcount to the NEF team and require changes to be made, please email the NEF team and they will reopen it in the next headcount period later in the term.
A parent declaration should be completed for every child claiming Nursery Education Funding. A new declaration must be completed if the child changes address or their funded hours.
Pattern of attendance
This form should be used to help record the number of hours a setting is claiming for each child. Having accurate information on this form will ensure the child does not exceed the 570/1140 hour entitlement.
If a child is claiming at more than one setting, the Pattern of Attendance must be used to indicate what hours each setting is claiming and whether they are universal hours or extended hours.
If a child leaves your setting before the end of the term, please ensure you have amended the number of funded weeks you are claiming for on your headcount. If the change has occurred outside of a headcount window, please email the change to the NEF team.
Please enter the child's last day of attendance in the comments box on the individual child record within Sentinel.
30 hours free childcare
Parents can make an application by creating a gateway account and completing the HMRC eligibility check on the Childcare Choices website
Settings can check the validity of their reference code (DERN) on the Early Years Portal (Sentinel). Please ensure that you check the validity of the DERN before the child starts at your setting.
Parents with issues relating to their DERN
Parents will need to contact the HMRC helpline on 0300 1234097 directly if they have any issues relating to their DERN.
Parents can access the extended funding from the term following the date the application was made.
Nursery Education Funding (NEF) contacts
NEF payment queries:
- Email: email@example.com
- Address: Herefordshire Council, Plough Lane, Hereford HR4 0LE
- Telephone: 01432 260021