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Increased Childcare Support from April 2024

Changes to childcare support will increase the number of hours available and expand the age of eligible children.

Starting in April 2024, a phased increase of childcare support involving the number of hours and children’s ages will be introduced. A gradual expansion of the scheme is planned to ensure providers can cope with the demand for additional childcare.

Similar to existing support, the allocation of these hours will be flexible. It allows usage over 38 weeks of the year (during school term time) or up to 52 weeks for those who utilise fewer than their total hours per week. The flexibility to spread childcare support across 52 weeks depends on the policies of the individual childcare provider.

The timetable of changes is:

  • From April 2024, eligible working parents of 2-year-olds will be able to access 15 hours childcare support.
  • From September 2024, 15 hours childcare support will be extended to eligible working parents of children from the age of 9 months to 3-year-olds.
  • From September 2025, eligible working parents with a child from 9 months old up to school age will be entitled to 30 hours of childcare a week. 

The goal is to offer 30 hours of childcare support to most working families with children under the age of five by September 2025.

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