The Department for Education has launched a consultation on the School Admissions Code and welcomes your feedback. The consultation is open and will run until 16 October. Improvements to this process will have a positive impact on all children seeking a school place in-year but will be particularly beneficial for the most vulnerable.
29/06/2020 - Small Business Discretionary Grant
On the 29th May, CFIT posted on our Provider Page this information and contacted settings who we felt would be eligible encouraging them to apply for the grant.
Please see this link confirming the application deadline has been extended for a further 2 weeks until 13th July 2020. CFIT are aware of a number of childcare providers who have been successful with this grant to help towards fixed premises costs. Please make sure if you have not already you submit an online application by the deadline date.
It would be good if you could update us with whether you were successful or not by emailing us on Earlyyearsfunding@derby.gov.uk with the details of the grant you received.
19/06/2020 - FEEE Provider Update
Please see the FEEE provider Update 19 June 2020 which covers important information on communication to CFIT, changes to funding forms and timetables for the next academic year 2020-21 and information sessions coming up.
01/06/2020 - Adjustments Summer Term 2020
Please note that you can now make submissions on the funding portal to reduce FEEE funding for those children who have left your provision or claim FEEE for new children who have joined your provision since the first headcount closed on Friday 15 May 2020.
On the Provider Page in the Latest news and COVID-19 Business Sustainability and Funding Update tab on 18 May we advised you that in line with DfE guidance from the 1 June 2020, if a child moves to your provision from a provision that continues to be closed or due to the previous provision offering a compromised offer or a different offer to what is detailed on the parents FEEE contract then the child’s funding will need to be transferred from the previous provision to the child’s new provision using the synergy online portal adjustment system. It is not expected in these circumstances that any notice period needs to be given by the parent in respect of the transfer of their child's FEEE.
However if a child was submitted on your summer headcount but theparents do not want their child to access their FEEE due to COVID19 for the rest of the summer term or need less FEEE than they were originally contracted to receive at your provision FEEE funding will be paid in line with the initial summer headcount claim you submitted for the child and you do not need to make an adjustment to reduce funding for the child.
You will need to submit an adjustment through the synergy online portal by Friday 3 July and will receive payment Friday 24 July 2020.
01/06/2020 - Derby firms to be surveyed on COVID-19 impact
Thousands of Derby businesses are to be asked how the coronavirus pandemic is impacting their operations and what help they need in order to recover. The study will help the city shape its plans to kick-start the local economy post-lockdown and tailor the support it can offer to companies. It aims to understand how firms have already been affected, whether they have had to furlough or lay off staff and whether they have accessed government loans or grants.
The survey takes around 15 minutes to complete and data collected will guide the work of the Economic Recovery Task Force.
Emails will be going out to companies in the next few days, with instructions on how to fill in the survey. Any firm that doesn’t receive an invitation to take part, but wants to can contribute, can do online on the DCC website. Please consider promoting the survey when speaking to businesses and partners to ensure we reach as many companies as possible.
Read more about the survey on the DCC newsroom.
29/05/2020 Discretionary Small Business Grant
Please note this will only apply to Private Day Nurseries, Pre-School Playgroups and Out of School Provision.
Urgent action is required by Early Years providers across the city to make an application if struggling to meet their on-going fixed property related costs during COVID-19. The scheme will be open between 29th May and 19th June and businesses will have 21 days to apply.
The grant is aimed at those who have not been eligible for any other Derby City Council COVID-19 grant related schemes. This includes the Nursery Business Rates 12m discount scheme and the £10k Small Business Relief Grant. Clarification has been made that subject to meeting the eligibility criteria early year’s setting can make applications.
For more information and details of the application process and eligibility criteria please see the following link don't delay apply today for business grant.
Please contact Heather Ryder-Carrington by email@example.com or telephone 01332 642603 for any further information on this.
28/05/2020 - Support for SEND children returning to settings
We realise that lots of you will be opening your doors again and/or taking back more children over the coming weeks and this might include some of your children who have SEND. We have some suggestions about children returning to nursery and some symbols that might help at the moment. We appreciate that this probably won’t cover everything that comes up so it’s also a reminder to get in touch with your link practitioner in The Early Intervention Team if you need to talk over other issues. Please get in touch if we can help you with anything. The Early Intervention Team.
18/05/2020 -Additional payments – Summer Term 2020
The Council have been making additional payments for summer term for the period 20 April and 22 May for any key worker and vulnerable children that may have moved to your provision from a closed provider, this covers the first half of term for term time contracts. However if you are providing funding for a child on a stretched model we will provide an extra week of funding to fund you over half term week 25 May to 29 May . Payment for these children will be made on Friday 12 June.
Going forward in line with DfE guidance from the 1 June 2020, if you are still providing funding for a key worker or vulnerable child that has moved to your provision temporarily we will now be moving funding from the closed provision to the child’s new temporary provision using the synergy online portal adjustment system.
You will need to submit an adjustment through the synergy online portal by Friday 3 July and will receive payment Friday 24 July 2020. We will email out to let you know when the summer term adjustment system is open for submissions.
Again we would advise that you submit your adjustment a week before the deadline to ensure your claim reflects what you have actually delivered or once the child moves back to their previous provision you may submit your adjustment if this falls before.
If you have any queries in respect of this please contact Heather Ryder-Carrington on 01332 642603 firstname.lastname@example.org) or Stacey De Abreu on 01332 642608 email@example.com.
07/05/2020 - FEEE 30 Hour Code Extension Summer Term 2020
The government has issued revised guidance on the 5 May 2020 by the DfE on Eligibility for government childcare offers protected, allowing local authorities to have temporary flexibility to ensure critical workers can continue to access the childcare they need to enable them to work. These arrangements will be reviewed over the summer by the government.
If you have had children of a keyworker you have not offered extended hours to over summer term or have had to charge for additional childcare due to their 30 hour code start date being after the 31 March 2020 can you please go back to the parents of these children and let them know they can now claim their child’s extended hours and ensure the provider portal is updated with these hours before next Friday 15 May 2020.
29/04/2020 - Use of FEEE funding during the coronavirus outbreak
The latest government guidance on the use of free early education entitlements funding during the coronavirus outbreak was issued yesterday evening, Tuesday 28th April 2020 by the government, giving guidance to Local Authorities on their ability to redistribute if necessary FEEE funding during the COVID19 outbreak to ensure sufficiency of childcare places for keyworkers children and vulnerable children. Derby City Council are currently able to provide the childcare needed for the target groups, however is keeping its position under review to ensure continuity of service and sufficiency within the City. Please be assured the re-distribution of FEEE funding would only be applied in exceptional circumstances and where all other options have been considered.
Please contact Earlyyearsfunding@derby.gov.uk directly, or Heather Ryder-Carrington, Childcare and Families Information Service Manager on 01332 642603 or by email firstname.lastname@example.org if you need any further information or clarity in respect of this.
24/04/2020 - Information about the NEW Early Years Inclusion Fund (EYIF)
From 1 April 2020 all early years settings (schools and PVI settings) can apply for top up funding for children with SEND in nursery or pre-school provision. The value of the new Early Years Inclusion Fund for 2020-2021 is £500,000. Information about the Early Years Inclusion Fund can be found on the Schools Information Portal.
23/04/2020 - Useful links - Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS)
Please take a look at the links below to support you making your CJRS claims:
Step by step guide for employers on how to make CJRS claim
Check if you can claim through the CJRS Scheme
Make a Claim
Online Calculator to help you work out what you can claim for
There is also further advice available through the usual channels:
Early Years Alliance
20/04/2020 - Additional Payments – Summer Term 2020
If you need to claim additional FEEE hours in summer term 2020 for Critical Worker parents and parents of vulnerable children that have moved from a closed childcare provider can you please complete the Additional Payment Form for Summer 2020.
This will cover the period Monday 20 April to Friday 22 May 2020 and the form must be returned by Friday 22 May to ensure you receive payment by Friday 5 June 2020.
We suggest you complete and return this form to us week commencing Monday 18 May to ensure your claims are accurate and in line with funded childcare you have delivered.
20/04/2020 - Updated COVID-19 information
On Friday 17 April 2020, the Government released its updated COVID-19 information including revised Guidance for the Early Years and Childcare sector. This guidance sets out the financial support that is available for different types of education, early years and children’s social care providers in England subject to the conditions also set out.
The Early Years section of the Guidance summaries private providers should only furlough employees, and therefore seek support through the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS), where they meet the following conditions:
- the employee works in an area of business where services are temporarily not required, and where their salary is not covered by public funding
- the employee would otherwise be made redundant or laid off
- the employee is not involved in delivering provision that has already been funded (free entitlement funding)
- (where appropriate) the employee is not required to deliver provision for a child of a critical worker and/or vulnerable child
- the grant from the CJRS would not be duplicative to other public grants received and would not lead to financial reserves being created
If it is difficult to distinguish whether staff are funded through free entitlement or private income for the purposes of meeting the first three conditions as listed above, then an early years provider can access the CJRS to cover up to the proportion of its pay bill which could be considered to have been paid for from that provider’s private income. This would typically be income received from ‘parent-paid’ hours and excludes all income from the government’s free entitlements (or ‘DSG income’) for all age groups. The guidance includes an illustration of how this would work in practice.
It was also announced on the same day the furloughing scheme will continue until 30 June 2020. The option to extend the scheme further is being retained by government.
The Local Authority will provide support on behalf of providers to lodge any collective concerns the impact this may have on sustainability of early years provision with the DfE. We will also seek further clarity / information from the Government in respect of the revised requirements linked to furloughing of staff when in receipt of FEEE.
Please contact Earlyyearsfunding@derby.gov.uk directly, or Heather Ryder-Carrington, Childcare and Families Information Service Manager on 01332 642603 or by email email@example.com if you need any further information, advice and support.
14/04/2020 - Covid-19 Additional Payments
We have now finished processing all additional payments for spring term 2020 and would like to make sure all vulnerable and critical worker’s children that have had to move to a new setting due to closures do not miss out on their FEEE entitlement.
Additional funding will only be paid to settings to provide FEEE entitlement for any funded hours the parent has signed up for on their parental contract and not received from the initial provider due to them closing. If you have not already submitted an additional payment form and your setting can offer the remainder of the child’s contracted FEEE hours for spring over the Easter break, please email Earlyyearsfunding@derby.gov.uk as soon as possible to ensure they receive their maximum FEEE entitlement.
08/04/2020 - Business Support and Financial Assistance for Childcare Providers
Hopefully you will should all now be aware of the business support and financial assistance the Government are making available.
There are different grants available including:
- A £10,000 grant for small businesses who on 11 March were receiving small business rates relief (one grant max per business)
- A nursery business rates discount for nursery providers on Ofsted’s Early Years Register and wholly or mainly used for the provision of the Early Years Foundation Stage and which are subject to business rates in the year 2020/21.
The Council will be administering the above and have already started to send letters to business who they feel may be eligible for financial support so you may have already been contacted in respect of this. CFIT have provided further details to identify eligible childcare providers as it is crucial you know as quickly as possible what support you are entitled to.
There is guidance on what to do £10k grant. We will provide further guidance as we receive this from the Council’s Business Rates Team. Please email Earlyyearsfunding@derby.gov.uk if we can provide further clarity or guidance in respect of this.
06/04/2020 - Summer Term Actuals 2020
Summer term actuals will be open from Monday 6 April until Friday 15 May 2020. All children that were present in your spring term 2020 funding will be carried forward into your summer term funding if they are still in the eligible date of birth range. Find out more details here.
25/03/2020 - Current guidance and statements
In this rapidly changing environment we hope to issue regular updates that offer you an overview of all the current guidance and statements issued by Government. Here is issue 1 of the Early Years Foundation Stage Update
and the COVID-19 Additional Payments Form.
24/03/2020 - Childcare for vulnerable children and children of critical workers
Childcare settings are now only open to the most vulnerable children and those whose parents' work is critical to the Coronavirus response. If this is you, search this special childcare directory.
24/03/2020 - Overwhelmed with messages?
Dear Childcare Providers,
We are very aware that updates and information are coming to you from many sources and that this can be overwhelming and add to the confusion that we are feeling. Here we have tried to summarise a few key messages and service expectations for you. We have developed a Parental Declaration Form which all providers should use to evidence why a child needs to attend.
Judith and Stacey – Childcare and Families Information Team (CFIT)
Coral, Dawn and Lorrain - Early Years Quality Improvement Service (EYQIS)
23/03/2020 - Derby Child Protection Conferences – information for safeguarding leads
As from the 23rd of March all meetings will take place virtually and no face to face conference / meetings will take place at the Kedleston Road site.
All attendees of meetings will be notified of how they will contribute the meeting .
CYP and their families / carers will be spoken to before and after the meeting to ensure that their voice is captured and the outcome of the meeting is fed back to them.
There will be delays in circulating minutes so it is important that those professionals attending meetings take notes also of recommended actions.
For these statutory meetings to go ahead it is equally important that all professionals and especially the allocated social workers provide updated reports- care plans and review of arrangements - to these meetings. This needs to be a priority. All reports are to be emailed to the Chairs / IRO in the normal way in ‘good time’ for the meeting to be purposeful. If social workers are unable to attend and managers are not able to send a backup due the COVID 19 concerns please let the Chair / admin (via email address) know and this will be minuted . It is important that there is a record of how we continued to evidence that keeping children safe remained our top priority even in these challenging times.
19/03/2020 – Coronavirus – 2, 3 and 4 year old funding
Following the education secretary announcement last night the government has announced schools, colleges and early years providers are to close on Friday 20 March, with the only exception being made for children of key workers and vulnerable children including those who have a social worker and those with Education, Health and Care Plans.
Further guidance will be out tomorrow and this will include a full list of key worker categories, children who do not fall into these groups should remain at home with appropriate care. We would advise all providers to work with parents to identify children in these categories so that you can continue to provide childcare for them after the 20th March.
We know this is a difficult time and a lot of you need to know how this will affect you financially, currently all funding will be paid for children up to 20 April no funding will be clawed back. Can you please submit your estimate claims for summer term as usual based on the number of children you were expecting to have in summer and as soon as further guidance is out tomorrow we will update you.
Please also see most recent guidance that has been published today on the coronavirus PM statement on coronavirus: 18 March 2020.
18/03/2020 - Coronavirus - 2, 3 and 4 year old funding
Based on the most recent release from the DfE on 17 March 2020 the current advice from Public Health England continues to be that all educational settings, including nurseries, preschools and childminders, should remain open unless advised otherwise by Public Health England.
The guidance states that Derby City Council can only continue to pay for all 2, 3 and 4 year old funded places, in the event that settings are closed on the advice of Public Health England, or children are not able to attend due to coronavirus, this will include:
- settings who are told to close e.g. due to an outbreak at the setting,
- individual funded children who are self-isolating due to coronavirus,
- individual funded children who are ill due to coronavirus.
If you are thinking of or have been advised to close your childcare provision due to the coronavirus, before you do, can you please email Earlyyearsfunding@derby.gov.uk stating the reason for your decision so we can ensure this meets the current DfE, guidelines failure to inform us may put your funding in jeopardy.
18/3/2020 - Launching email confirmation.
We have been asked to look at other ways of communicating with families and delivering our Families Information Service helpline.
To make sure that families can still check their eligibility for 2 year old funding and receive their voucher code we are launching email confirmation.
From today parents will receive an email confirming that they can take up a summer place and the email will include their code and a link to our childcare directory so that they can search for local childcare providers.
As a provider you will need to see the email and record the code, so that you can add the child to your summer headcount.
17/03/2020 - Tax Free Childcare Update
All registered childcare providers can now apply to offer Tax Free Childcare. Last week the HMRC changed the process for childcare providers to sign-up to offer Tax-Free Childcare so they no longer need a UTR, which prevented some offering it. The new system has been tested and feedback suggested that it is now nice and easy to set up and to signed into your account.
Tax-Free Childcare allows parents to get up to £2,000 per child, per year, towards their childcare costs (or £4,000 for children who have a disability). The offer is for children from birth to 11 years, or 16 for children who are disabled.
Read more about Tax-Free Childcare.
12/03/2020 - Coronavirus update
We are awaiting guidance from the Department for Education regarding action to take if a childcare setting has to close due to Coronavirus where 2, 3, and 4 year old funding is inplace.
Coronavirus – Advice for all early years providers, schools and further education providers
The government is closely monitoring the spread of the Coronavirus and is taking action at home and abroad.
The overall risk of Coronavirus to the UK remains moderate. However we understand that people may be concerned where there are children, students or staff returning from or visiting China.
Public Health England and the Foreign Office have issued advice for anyone travelling to the area. This can be found at:
Latest information and advice can also be found at:
Please share this advice with your staff and cascade as appropriate.
FEEE Estimates - Summer Term 2020
The synergy online portal will be open for estimate submissions from Monday 9 March 2020 until Friday 27 March 2020. The overall number of hours you enter for each age group will be used to calculate your 70% estimate payment, which will be with you on Wednesday 15 April 2020 this is a few days before schedule due to the Easter break.
30-Hour Codes - Summer term 2020
In preparation for summer term 2020, can you please ensure you are prompting parent's to re-validate their 30-hour eligibility codes and apply for any new 30-hour codes before the 31 March 2020. In order for a code to be eligible for summer term the code start date must fall on or before 31 March 2020, the code end date must fall on or after 20 April 2020 and the grace period end date must fall on or after 31 August 2020. Grace peroiods can only be used for children who were accessing FEEE in the spring term at the setting where they access this.
Please remember when checking 30-hour codes in the 'eligibility checker' on the synergy online portal you must not enter the parent's forename's or surname's in order for the eligibility checker to return a result. If the parents forename and surname are entered, you will get an error message stating 'submission failed' this is an issue within synergy and will be resolved with our next upgrade in April 2020.
Posters and advice sheets on Coronavirus for Arabic and Farsi communities
Please find below posters of various sizes and information sheets to display in settings which have been translated into Arabic and Farsi:
The posters can be downloaded from the Downloads shown at the bottom of the Childcare Providers Business Support page.
02/03/2020 - Update on Brexit
The guidance given to parents about applying for a school places has been updated in response to Brexit, please signpost parents to the latest guidance:
Have you thought about what Brexit will mean for your business? We have prepared some useful information for you.