Free entitlement for 3 and 4 year olds

Early years funding network events were held in November to provide information to childcare providers as to how funding will be delivered during the Autumn 2017 funding block.

There may be additional early years funding network events organised when required and we will provide additional information on the early years bulletin when dates have been organised.

The presentation document for the most recent network events is below:

Register to deliver funded places or change your payment details

We have changed the process of how we receive information from childcare providers. You may use our new online form to:

  • register to deliver funded places
    • if you are already registered for free childcare and education for 2 year olds but wish to register for free entitlement for 3 and 4 year olds or 30 hour free childcare
    • you do not have to re-register for 30 hour free childcare if you already offer free entitlement but you do still need to ensure that you have completed an annual provider agreement
  • complete the annual provider agreement
    • the annual provider agreement must be completed to continue to receive early years funding
  • update your bank details
Register to deliver funded places, update bank details or complete an annual agreement

Funding rate for 2017 to 2018

The funding for Northamptonshire’s childcare providers delivering free entitlement for 3 and 4 year old children is determined by the local Early Years Single Funding Formula (EYSFF).

There will be 2 funding formulas used during the 2017 to 2018 period.

A transitional formula with a base rate of £3.75 (including £0.14 notional SEN) will be used from 1 April to 31 August 2017 and a final formula, with a base rate of £3.80 (including £0.14 notional SEN) will be used from 1 September 2017 to 31 March 2018.

You can find details of each formula within the relevant document below:

Elements of the funding are determined, directly or indirectly, by the degree of deprivation (as defined by the National Index of Multiple Deprivation) attached to the postcode of the setting or the domestic residence of children attending the setting.

For information regarding postcodes in areas of deprivation, Children's Centre reach areas and districts please use the below document:

Below is a list of postcodes in the county together with a deprivation rating of the postcode:

Visit the Department for Education (DfE) website for more information.

How do I claim the free entitlement for 3 and 4 year olds?

Headcount day information

All early years funding can be claimed on a monthly basis from September 2017. There will continue to be a headcount date on the first month of each of the 3 funding blocks, and it is expected that most children will be claimed for in the month that the main headcount sits. The form will be opened every month following, so that providers can add new children or remove children that have left.

For information on headcount dates and the dates that forms will be open, please see the document below:

Registered providers can make their monthly headcount claims by logging into the provider portal and completing their headcount claims. 

If you have any enquiries regarding the provider portal and the headcount claims, please view the frequently asked questions document below:

Please use the below guidance document for information on how to use the provider portal:

Other information regarding funding claims will be made available in the Early Years Bulletin.

Free entitlement for 3 and 4 year olds - guide for providers

Use the guide below when claiming the free childcare for 3 and 4 year olds:

Parental declaration

Below is the  parental declaration that acts as the contract between the family and the provider of the free childcare for 2 year olds, the free childcare for 3 and 4 year olds and 30 hours free childcare.

Please note: The privacy notice must be viewed by the parent or ​carer before they sign the parental declaration.

If you require assistance regarding the parental declaration, please do not hesitate to contact us at

Funding information sheet

The information sheet for the free childcare for 2 year olds and the free childcare for 3 and 4 year olds is now available:

Statutory guidance - early years and childcare code of practice

The county council is bound by the statutory guidance - code of practice. These guidelines are issued to all local authorities by the Department for Education (DfE) on the delivery of the free childcare for 2, 3 and 4 year olds.

EYSFF indicative budgets

To find information on the provisional EYSFF Indicative Budgets for 2015 to 2016, please visit the council's Budget Information pages.

Can I make an appeal if I haven't received the correct funding?

Childcare providers who have made an error on their headcount return and therefore did not receive the correct amount of funding will be able to make an appeal.

Appeals can be made for the information submitted on the main data collection headcount return and the second 2 year funding headcount return only. Appeals cannot be made for advanced funding.

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