The first years of a child’s life are very influential and childcare can play a huge part in their early education. Children learn best of all through play and early learning and a childcare setting can help develop language and communication, social skills and prepare them for school. It really can help to give them the best start in life.

All 3 and 4 year olds in Staffordshire are entitled to free education for 15 hours a week during school term times. Some 2 year olds are also entitled to 15 hours a week of free education during school term times with a childcare provider of your choice. This could be a child-minder, nursery or pre-school/playgroup, and some schools also provide places.

Staffordshire County Council's website provides lots of information for families thinking about childcare, and you can also check your eligibility for places and more here.

There's a handy leaflet, attached below, that gives you more insight into free nursery education funding.