Preschool funding - charging on top of funded hours

(7 Posts)
karyncake Fri 10-Jan-14 18:24:54

Does anyone know whether preschools are allowed to charge funded children who only do 15 hours?
My daughter has finally started to settle at her preschool which she started last August and today I was told that from next month their rates will be going up so I will have to pay a £1 for every hour she attends as the government only cover the first £4 per hour. This means I will have to pay £15 per week which right now I just can't afford.
I am going to have to give notice on Monday and I am really upset as she will be starting school in September so it will not be fair to make her start at a new setting. She is quite shy and really struggled at her last preschool so its been lovely to see her come out of her shell here.
Are preschools allowed to charge on top of funding?

NickNacks Fri 10-Jan-14 18:25:36

No they are not. Period.

mamabear35 Fri 10-Jan-14 18:35:46

They are absolutely not allowed to charge a top up fee. The scheme was introduced to allow parents the opportunity to return to work f/t or p/t who otherwise couldn't afford childcare.
The childcare provider decides to sign up to the programme and if it doesn't cover their costs then they can choose to offer fewer free places.
I would speak to your council's educationdept and tell them what your pre school are proposing.

HSMMaCM Fri 10-Jan-14 18:35:54

If she's doing 15 hrs per week for 38 weeks of the year then they cannot charge and cannot make you take on any extra hours.

karyncake Fri 10-Jan-14 18:53:51

Thank you ladies, I thought it was a bit off. I will contact the council on Monday.

Littlefish Fri 10-Jan-14 21:22:59

Mamabear - sorry to correct you, but the scheme was not introduced to provide childcare so parents could return to work. It was set up so that all children could access early education. I absolutely agree with all your other points though. smile

CommitteeQuestions Fri 07-Feb-14 18:18:11

They are not allowed to charge, but most can't survive if they don't get extra money from fundraising/ voluntary contributions from parents. We even made a loss although most parents are paying over £1.50 per hour.

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