Time to send out a missive to our clients with small children? From 22 March, parents can pre-register for the government’s new childcare offers, with the launch of a new Childcare Choices government https://www.childcarechoices.gov.uk/ .
In their launch press release the government say:
The introduction of the government’s Tax-Free Childcare scheme will begin on 28 April, for parents of the youngest children. It will be gradually rolled out over 2017 – cutting childcare costs for working families across the UK by up to £2,000 per child per year, or £4,000 for disabled children.
On top of this, from September this year parents of three and four-year-old children living in England will be able to apply for a new 30 hours’ free childcare offer, worth around £5,000 per child.
The Childcare Choices website includes a Childcare Calculator for parents to compare all the government’s childcare offers and check what works best for their families.
Through the site, parents can also pre-register for email alerts that will notify them when they can apply, as well as providing details of existing government childcare offers.
The new 30 hours’ free childcare offer for working parents of three and four year olds in England doubles the current 15 hours of free childcare currently available, saving eligible working families up to £5,000 a year.
Parents will be able to apply for Tax-Free Childcare and the 30 hours offer in one go through the government’s new digital childcare service. Eligible parents can benefit from both Tax-free Childcare and 30 hours’ free childcare at the same time.
Both of these new offers have been run as trials over recent months, to test the new digital services.
More than 4,000 parents are already benefiting from the 30 hours offer in eight ‘early implementer’ councils, with thousands more set to follow suit, as four new areas launch the 30 hours offer in April. And over 2,000 parents are cutting their childcare costs with the Tax-Free Childcare trial.
These offers build on the childcare support already available to thousands of families, including:
- 15 hours’ free childcare for all three and four year olds
- 15 hours for disadvantaged two year olds
- enhanced childcare support through Universal Credit
- childcare vouchers.
Parents, especially those with small children, will appreciate a heads up on this issue. Time to dust off your mailing lists, or add the link to your next newsletter?