Free Early Education places for 2 year olds
Free early education places for 2 year olds is known in Kent as the Free for 2 or 'FF2' scheme.
We have a duty to provide eligible 2 year olds up to 570 hours of free early education a year over 38 weeks of the year term time or up to 52 weeks stretched funding.
A child is eligible if:
- they come within the criteria used to determine eligibility for Free School Meals
- their families receive Working Tax Credits and have an annual gross income of no more than £16,190 per year
- their families receive Universal Credit and have an annual net income of no more than £15,400
- they have a current statement of Special Educational Needs or an Education, Health and care plan
- they are entitled to Disability Living Allowance
- they are looked after by a local authority
- they are no longer looked after by the local authority as a result of an adoption order, a special guardianship order or a child arrangements order which specifies with whom the child lives.
In July, the government permanently extended eligibility for the free early education entitlement for the most disadvantaged two-year-old children whose parent(s) meet the following conditions:
- That they are excluded from claiming public funds as a consequence of their immigration status, or their lack of immigration status.
- They are in receipt of support under section 17 of the Children Act 1989.
Eligible children can start claiming after they turn two, depending on when their birthday is.
|Child's 2nd birthday||When they can claim from|
|1 January to 31 March||the beginning of term on or after 1 April|
|1 April to 31 August||the beginning of term on or after 1 September|
|1 September to 31 December||the beginning of term on or after 1 January|
Kent County Council's website has more information on how to apply for free early education for 2 year olds
Help applying for FF2
FF2 Scheme Guidance
Information for Parents and Carers, Early Years Providers, Eligible Childminders and Children's Centres can be found by following the links below:
- FF2 information sheet for Early Years providers (PDF, 214.4 KB)
- Parents and Carers (PDF, 242.6 KB)
- Children's Centres (PDF, 245.7 KB)
Guidance for Autumn 2020
How to submit an FF2 claim
- Parental declaration form for 2 year olds (PDF, 201.8 KB)
- Word Version - Parental declaration for 2 year olds (DOCX, 346.6 KB)
- Parental declaration form guidance notes (PDF, 222.1 KB)
FF2 Payment Schedule
- 2021/22 FF2 Payment Schedule (PDF, 183.7 KB)
- 2020/21 FF2 Payment Schedule (PDF, 186.0 KB)
- FF2 Summer 2021 Payment Schedule (PDF, 138.5 KB)
You can download a poster below:
The Department for Education's Early Education document (PDF, 538.9 KB) contains statutory guidance from the Department for Education for English local authorities on their duties under sections 6, 7, 7A, 9A, 12 and 13 of the Childcare Act 2006. Local authorities must have regard to this guidance when seeking to discharge those duties.
Kent Provider Agreement
The first few years of a child's life are crucially important to their development. Kent County Council are working with providers across the county to make early education for 2, 3 and 4 year olds easily accessible. The Kent Provider Agreement provides a framework which outlines the mutual commitments on delivering the early education free entitlement.
- Kent provider agreement from 1 September 2021 (PDF, 480.9 KB)
- Provider declaration from 1 September 2021 (PDF, 135.3 KB)
3 and 4 year old funding
Contact a member of Management Information which manages the FF2 Scheme in Kent by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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