The Extended Free Childcare Offer


News and Updates

Did you know that you can read our top Tips for using 30 hours to help you get the most out of the scheme. 

What does this mean?

Working parent/carers of 3 and 4 year olds in Derby may be eligible for up to a further 15 hours free childcare in addition to the existing free 15 hours early education entitlement, if they meet certain criteria. Currently all 3 and 4's are entitled to 570 hours each year of free childcare, for eligible families it will increase to 1140 hours. This will come into place from September 2017 but parents can register to find out if they are eligible now.  The new extended entitlement aims to support working parents manage the cost of childcare, support parents into work and enable some parents to increase their hours.

If you are eligible, you will receive a code to take to your preferred provider. Parents who are in training will not be eligible as they can receive other government support.

How it will work

There are different ways to take up this new free childcare offer. See the below examples to see which model would work for you and your family:

  • 22 Free Hours –  will be spread over 52 weeks a year
  • 24 Free Hours –will be spread over 48 weeks a year
  • 30 Free hours – will be spread over 38 weeks term time only

It will be worthwhile talking to your childcare provider to find out what they can offer you. We cannot stress enough how important it is to talk to your childcare providers as early as possible about how they may be implementing the extended entitlement for working families.  

How do you know who is eligible?

If you meet the below criteria then you will be eligible. There is now and online checking system in place where by parent/carers and children's details will be used and checked in conjunction with HMRC. Check to see if you are eligible now.


Full Eligibility Criteria

The additional hours will be available to working families where;

  • Both parents are working (or the sole parent is working in a lone parent family) and each parent earns a weekly minimum equivalent to 16 hours at national minimum wage, and less than £100,000 per year. Working will include employed and self-employed persons. Parents do not necessarily need to actually work 16 hours a week, but their earnings must reflect at least 16 hours of work at national minimum wage or national living wage. This includes parents on zero contract hours who meet the criteria.
  • Both parents are employed but one or both parents is temporarily away from the workplace on parental, maternity or paternity leave
  • Both parents are employed but one or both parents is temporarily away from the workplace on adoption leave
  • Both parents are employed but one or both parents is temporarily away from the workplace on statutory sick pay
  • One parent is employed and the other parent has substantial caring responsibilities based on specific benefits received for caring
  • One parent is employed and one parent is disabled or incapacitated based on receipt of specific benefits
  • Find out more by clicking the green button below.

If parents are not working, they will still be entitled to their universal childcare offer of 15 hours of free early years childcare for 3 and 4 year olds.  Parents may also wish to find out more about Tax Free Childcare

You may also want to visit  This government webpage outlines a range of funding options which you may be entitled to. It also allows parents to sign up for updates and notifications on tax free childcare as well as other government childcare cost schemes. 


For help with completing an application, or if parents do not have internet access please call the childcare services customer interaction centre on 0300 123 4097. You will be able to apply over the phone directly to HMRC - the tax office. Please be aware that parents that make their application over the phone will need to phone the Customer Interaction Centre to reconfirm their eligibility.  There is also an alternative to using the online application if you are experiencing  problems, using this I-form.

To find your code for this scheme when you have already been allocated one, visit the downloads section and click on 'Finding my code' document.

Don't forget you can always find out more Information-30hours-taxfree

Find a Childcare Provider

If you are looking fora childcare provider then you can search our childcare directory form the comfort of your own home. If you cannot find childcare, please contact us by phone using the contact details below.


Contact details

Post address:
Families Information Service
Derby City Council
The Council House
Corporation Street
Phone: 01332 640758
Families Information Service
The Council House
Corporation Street