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Dovecot Primary School

Learning together, growing together

30 hours for 3 & 4 year olds of working parents

A child will be entitled to the additional free hours from the term after both of the following conditions are satisfied:

  • the child is three years old.
  • The child’s parent has a current valid 30 hours eligibility code from HMRC

The eligibility criteria for the additional hours are set out in the Early Education and Childcare statutory guidance.

Please ensure that parents are aware that eligibility for the additional free hours is determined by HMRC through an online application.  This can be accessed through the Childcare Choices website (

The only exception to this is children in foster care. From September 2018, children in foster care may also be eligible for the additional hours, providing they meet criteria of the 30 hours, plus

  •  that the social worker approves that the additional hours are consistent with the child’s   care plan
  •  The foster parent is taking up paid employment outside of their fostering role.

Foster parents should apply directly to the LA through their social worker, to ensure that accessing the additional hours is consistent with the child’s care plan. Points set out below apply to children in foster care accessing the extended entitlement in the same way as they do to all other children.


Please click on the link below to view our full guidance. paper copies of this document are available from the school office.