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Early Years Entitlement for 2,3 and 4 Year Olds

Qualifying two year olds and every child from the term after their third birthday is entitled to up to 570 hours funded nursery provision a year until the term before they start school. These sessions are known as the ‘Universal Entitlement’.

In addition, working parents / carers of 3 and 4 year olds who meet the qualifying criteria are eligible for an additional 570 hours (1,140 in total) funded nursery provision a year until the term before they start school. These sessions are known as the ‘Extended Entitlement’.

Parents / carers apply for both entitlements via the nursery and must complete the Early Years Entitlement Registration Form. Application for the Extended Entitlement requires a 30 hours eligibility code, which parents / carers must first apply for on-line through the Government’s Childcare Service -

Both entitlements are subject to Government and Local Authority terms and conditions which we are obliged to work within and which may change without notice.

How we deliver the Early Years Entitlement

It is Mama Bear’s policy to support parents / carers by offering the Early Years Entitlement flexibly, either as stand-alone sessions (Early Years Entitlement-only) or as part of a broader booking pattern (fee-paying nursery place). Please note that in order to manage demand and to do this sustainably, we are no longer offering any new term time only sessions and now only provide EYE sessions on an all year round (47.5 weeks p.a.) basis. Availability for funded places is given first to children already in our care, their siblings and then to new clients on a first-come-first-served basis. The dates of the funded weeks vary from year to year and are published in advance.

Under the Universal Entitlement the first 12 hours per week are funded for 47.5 weeks of the year. The funded hours per week are doubled to 24 for those qualifying for the Extended Entitlement. Parents / carers may choose from any of our available sessions, with a maximum of 10 funded hours in any one day.

What we charge for

The Early Years Entitlement funding is intended to deliver free, high quality, flexible childcare. It is not intended to pay for the costs of meals, drinks, snacks, other consumables or additional activities.

To cover this a consumables charge is made for funded sessions across all age groups.

The charge is intended to contribute towards the cost of items not covered by the funding, including all meals, drinks and snacks.

This charge is waived for parents / carers in receipt of the Early Years Pupil Premium (EYPP) or where the child is funded through the low / no income (disadvantaged) route.

As an alternative to the hourly charge, we would therefore encourage parents / carers who are in receipt of benefits or whose children have been in care or adopted from care to apply for the EYPP.

We do not allow parents / carers to bring in their own food and drink for their children. This is a safeguarding measure designed to reduce the risk from hazards such as allergens, food poisoning and choking. Additionally, the policy helps us combat food inequality, promote communal, healthy eating and enables us to embed mealtimes within the wider curriculum (where children learn about specific foodstuffs and then eat them).

For more information about the criteria for two year old funding please click on the relevant link below:

Bristol childcare for two year olds
South Gloucestershire childcare for two year olds
Somerset childcare for two year olds
Torbay childcare for two year olds
Plymouth childcare for two year olds


3rd May 2024 Update

FAQ's regarding the Early Years Entitlements - The Main Things You Need To Know

We have received another briefing from the Department for Education, which we'd like to share with you.

The document can be accessed by clicking here: Early Years Entitlements - The Main Things You Need To Know

The DfE have also set out a Q&A for parents on their website, which can be found here:

Also don't forget to visit Childcare Choices | 30 Hours Childcare, Tax-Free Childcare and More | Help with Costs | GOV.UK for more information on help with funding and to apply for your funded place.