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Last updated: 12 April 2022

10. Early years education

Finding early education for children

There is a list on the Family information service website. Type the postcode in the ‘Where’ box to find educational settings that are nearest to you.

If you would like support finding local childcare, contact the Early Years Service on 01296 387000 or 01296 387111. You can also email the team [email protected] or complete the online form.

Different types of childcare settings

You can choose to send your child to any of the following settings:

  • Day Nurseries provide care for children from birth to five years old all year round
  • Childminders provides care in their home
  • Pre-schools usually provides care for children between ages of two and five years old during ‘term-time’
  • School nurseries usually provide care for children between the ages of two and five years old during ‘term-time’.

If a setting is unable to give you all the hours that you need for your child, you can register your child at several settings.

All settings follow the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) curriculum. This is a framework that all providers must follow by law. This ensures settings provide age-appropriate play and experiences for children aged from birth to five.


Term-time means the weeks that schools and pre-schools are open:

  • Spring Term - January to March
  • Summer term - April to July
  • Autumn term - September to December

Schools and pre-schools are closed for:

  • 1 week in February, May and October
  • 2 weeks in April and December
  • 6 weeks from mid-July until the end of August

Paying for education and childcare

If you are a non-UK citizen on a low income from work (or not working), you are allowed a childcare place for your child for 15 hours per week from the age of two; from the age of 3 until your child starts school you are allowed a childcare place regardless of your income. You do not have to pay.

If your child is two years old, you must get a funding code as not all two-year-olds are funded. You can get a code by applying online Early Years Education online application or by phoning the Early Years Service on 01296 387 000 or 01296 387 111 and they will complete the form with you.

If your child is three or four years old, your setting gives you a form to complete so you can receive funding for your child’s place from the government. If both parents of three- and four-year-olds are working, you may qualify for the ‘extended entitlement’ of up to 30 hours fully funded childcare per week. Your chosen setting can support you with this.

Day Nursery, Pre-school, School Nursery or Childminder settings charge fees for any additional hours of childcare that you require above the amount funded by Buckinghamshire Council.

Contact and additional information