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£50 million Government childcare grant scheme announced

The Government has announced details of a £50 million grant scheme to provide new childcare places, designed to support the 30-hour childcare offer in England.

The scheme, first announced in November 2015, invited applications for bids from early years settings, including schools who already offered, or planned to offer, provision for 3- and 4-year-olds. Today’s confirmed projects will create almost 9000 free places for eligible 3- and 4-year-olds, saving parents around £5000 per year when it is rolled out from next September.

Almost 200 nurseries and pre-schools were selected for the winning bids. The funding will enable the settings to invest in new buildings, and convert old ones.

More than £2 million of this funding will be invested in the Education Secretary’s first six opportunity areas that have been identified as social mobility ‘coldspots’:

  • Blackpool
  • Derby
  • Norwich
  • Oldham
  • Scarborough
  • West Somerset

Childminding settings were not eligible to apply for the grants, but PACEY has been reassured that the childcare business grants will be extended for childminders and we are also working with government to ensure that additional support is allocated to childminders to enable them to play their part in delivering the 30 hour offer.