Free Entitlement (FE) - free childcare funding


Free Entitlement (FE) allows children to access up to 570 hours or 1140 hours of free childcare (early education) per year (subject to being of eligible age and meeting eligibility criteria where required). Access to high quality childcare is beneficial to all children including children of families on low incomes, children with additional needs, children looked after, ethnic minorities or children of families being supported by the Local Authority.

What we do:

  • Only Ofsted registered pre-schools, day nurseries and childminders who are part of West Sussex County Council's FE directory are able to offer these places. The Family Information Service (FIS) can provide details about what's available in your area.
  • All children aged 3 and 4 are eligible for Universal funding the term after their 3rd birthday (570 hours per year). Exact date of birth ranges are on our website (link in Contact Details section).
  • For eligible working parents of 3 and 4 year olds, children can use an additional 570 hours, Extended, each year. Parents must apply online to confirm their eligibility.
  • 2 year olds must be of eligible age and the family must meet one of the eligibility criteria as listed on our website. The parent will then need to complete a short online application form before being able to use the funding.
  • Childcare settings who receive this funding must make all reasonable efforts to include all children. If the setting needs support with this they should contact us.

Our users say:

"I will now be able to give more time to my new baby. My son will be able to develop his social skills and language. He loves the groups here. This will have a huge impact on his development."

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Age Range: 2–5

Wheelchair Accessible?

Free to use?

Contact Details

01243 777 807

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1st Floor, The Grange,
County Hall,
PO19 1RG


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