Some 2-year-olds in England can get free early education and childcare.

You must be getting one of the following:

  • Income Support
  • income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance (JSA)
  • income-related Employment and Support Allowance (ESA)
  • support through part 6 of the Immigration and Asylum Act
  • Child Tax Credit and/or Working Tax Credit and have an annual income under £16,190
  • the guaranteed element of State Pension Credit
  • the Working Tax Credit 4-week run on (the payment you get when you stop qualifying for Working Tax Credit)
  • Universal Credit

Children are also entitled to a place if:

If your child is eligible, you can start claiming after they turn 2. The date you can claim will depend on when their birthday is.

Child’s birthday     When you can claim
1 January to 31 March     the beginning of term on or after 1 April
1 April to 31 August     the beginning of term on or after 1 September
1 September to 31 December     the beginning of term on or after 1 January


Contact your local Children’s Centre or click here to check if your child is eligible.