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Charging £10 min?(14 Posts)
Hi there. I am moving to the UK from the US this summer, and looking into a day nursery/preschool for my daughter. I am new to all this so still trying to learn how it works. I know she is entitled to 15 free hours. I found a preschool I really like, and they said they accept the 15 hours. But they charge a £10 daily minimum, even if I just plan to send her 3 days a week/15 hours total. Is that common? Before I keep looking around at other schools, I want to know if this is just what to expect or if this place is unusual. Thanks in advance!
Top ups are normal yes, mine dc Nursery is only £2 a day extra for lunch and £2 a week for snacks. Both compulsory.
£10 is not unusual though.
Nurseries are allowed to offer the 15hrs in a way they suits them so might be 8-11 5 days a week, or only between 9-2 for instance and if you want to send your child for a full day / outside these hours, you pay an hourly rate. They can also charge for food, drinks, extra activities etc. Most people who use "just" the 15 hours end up paying more than £30.
This is helpful, thank you! I love the school and we are definitely willing to spend the money, just wanted to make sure it was the norm.
My children's preschool was completely free for 15/30 hours. I know some places will try to claw back the difference between funding and there usual charges (eg funding pays £4.50 an hour and they usually charge £5, so they ask for £3 a day for snacks/crafts) and but £10 seems a lot.
Interesting. So maybe I can look around a bit more and see what I can find. Is it considered a bit taboo to "only" use the 15 hours.
It's not taboo but bare in mind many pre schools and nurseries are going under due to the "free" places. They're not being greedy charging top ups, they're trying to stay in business.
Usually community preschools that only open 9-3 term times will be free or just ask a small snack/craft/activities contribution.
Day nurseries that are open 8-6 all year round are more likely to put more conditions on funded places as they have more to lose.
Nurseries in schools should be able to offer the hours free or with a small contribution.
The one I used only charged a nominal fee for snacks - £2/week. I only used the free hours but it was a nursery attached to a school so only open school hours and not year round
Are you British OP? I only ask because pre-schools are nurseries in the UK are not the same thing.
Pre-schools are usually attached to a school or community based and dont have any provision for babies / younger toddlers. They often open school hours 9-3 although some are open longer and you are more likely to just have to pay a nominal fee for snacks etc. Normally you just use your 15 hours and nothing on top.
Nurseries are usually private businesses and offer childcare from say 6mths to starting school. They dont have to offer the 15 hours but if they do, they are free to set how it can be used. You can usually (subject to available places) ask for additional hours / early starts / late pick ups (provided you pay) because they provide longer hours 7.30/8am maybe to 6pm or 6.30pm.
Sorry major typo -that should read pre-schools and nurseries are not the same
@namechangedtoday15 I am not British, so this is all quite confusing. I have lived in the UK before for several years but never with children. Lots of learn! For example, the facility I am looking at calls itself a "Nursery and Pre School", but it's only for children ages 2-5, and from the hours 9-2 during term time. So it's just a private pre school I think?
How does one go about getting a place at a primary school pre school? The application process seems different. For the private one, all I have to do is fill out an application form and send it in.
My ds did 15hours at a private day nursery over 2 and a half days, I paid £5 a week to cover lunch and snacks.
At school nursery it was £1 a week to cover ingredients for cooking.
If you find a school with a nursery class, call them directly and ask how to apply. You will probably need to apply soon for September - if they have available spaces you may be able to start sooner.
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