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You know the Early Years 15 hours free childcare...?

(20 Posts)
FrazzleRock Fri 22-Mar-13 19:34:38

Well, I was wondering...

If the (morning) nursery session is cancelled because of an event that afternoon (Easter Parade). What happens to the funds for that session? I unfortunately have to work, as I do every Wednesday, and haven't budgeted for any random mornings off school. Can those funds come to me so I can pay for alternative care? Or is it just tough?

ash979 Fri 22-Mar-13 19:48:33

You won't be able to get the funds but they should offer you an alternative session if they have cancelled yours

FrazzleRock Fri 22-Mar-13 19:52:50

I can't see them doing that. Both morning and afternoon sessions are full to bursting so I can't see how they'd offer another session.

I've emailed the local council to see if they can help with childcare costs. I tried Tax Credits but they were no use as they don't help to pay for one off childcare sessions.

MajaBiene Fri 22-Mar-13 19:58:15

They have to offer you the session - my DS's nursery once had to offer hours during the school holidays due to being closed for building work. If they claim the funding for your DC and then don't provide the session they are committing fraud.

OddBoots Fri 22-Mar-13 19:58:56

You are meant to be being offered 570 hours per year accessed over a minimum of 38 weeks of the year so if a session is planned to be closed (rather than shut by something not predicted) then they need to open for an additional session that year or allow access at another non-full session. Your child should get that education time (which is slightly different to it being childcare but of course the two cross over).

FrazzleRock Fri 22-Mar-13 20:07:35

I think I need to talk to the teacher on Monday. I don't want to come across an entitled money grabber though...?

I'm just really stuck and struggling to afford to go to work as it is. If I was just doing it for the money I wouldn't bother as it's so stressful organising the DC. Random days off just makes it even more stressful.

Seems like all the other mothers from the class live off their husbands or can share childcare so it doesn't affect them. Being a single parent is somewhat challenging in these circumstances!

Just another obstacle to climb over....

MajaBiene Fri 22-Mar-13 20:10:24

I wouldn't talk to the teacher, it is unlikely to be her organising the funding. Speak to the Head/manager.

FrazzleRock Fri 22-Mar-13 20:16:13

Ah right. Good point!

MisForMumNotMaid Fri 22-Mar-13 20:20:37

I was a single parent when my eldest was in nursery class at school and had a chat with the teacher about similar issues, DS2 was in nursery and I worked. DS1 was occassionally snuck into other groups to get around such issues and into school dinners if I couldn't very occassionally manage a pre lunch pick up. I didn't discuss with other mums it was help gratefully received.

Blackqueen Fri 22-Mar-13 20:21:09

Could depend on what type of setting it is - term time only settings only receive funding for 38 weeks per year although a school year is usually 39 weeks hence schools have 4 Inset days plus an admin day to make up the extra week. Non maintained settings such as preschools / non-school nurseries can have inset days but sometimes choose to use their "5 non funded days" in different ways eg we always close for a day in the summer and invite all the children to a tea party to say goodbye to all the leavers instead. The tea party will only last 2 hours but all the children - morning, afternoon and all dayers will all be invited. The patents don't seem to mind but we do explain it all when they sign up for funding. Sorry but I have no idea what day nurseries that open all year round do!

FrazzleRock Fri 22-Mar-13 20:53:20

Ok I think that makes sense... I have a major headache today so not absorbing information very easily.

He goes to a nursery which is attached to DS1's primary school so it's term time only. He's there five mornings per week (Session is three hours).
I doubt the head would allow him to go into another class for that morning. She's a right battleaxe! I try and stay out of her way if I'm honest.

HSMMaCM Sat 23-Mar-13 07:56:17

Just ask when you're getting those hours. It might be an extra session tagged on the end of term.

Tweetinat Sat 23-Mar-13 08:10:26

This is a really interesting thread as I've just found out that on the last day of term, the preschool are holding a 'sports day' and all children (who don't normally attend that day) will come and each child MUST be accompanied by a parent. This happens to be one of DSs days so will be there anyway, but as I will also have to be there I'll have to cancel a day of work. Do the preschool have to offer me an additional session to make up for it?

We also had 2 days cancelled this term for snow. I'm assuming they don't have to offer make up sessions as this was out of their control (although technically they could have opened as there was no snow where we live but schools elsewhere in the county were confused).

FamiliesShareGerms Sat 23-Mar-13 08:13:00

BTW it's not "free childcare", it's funded sessions at pre-school

Tweetinat Sat 23-Mar-13 08:30:35

Really helpful post families. Yes, it's education not childcare. But some of us use the opportunity to work whilst our child is being educated, just like you know, the thousands of other people who do so every day while their children are in school.

FrazzleRock Sat 23-Mar-13 08:33:06

Families - Yes you're absolutely right. It's not "Free childcare"
It is free education though.

I just wish I'd known about this when I was booking off my 2 and a half days annual leave a couple of weeks ago.

FamiliesShareGerms Sat 23-Mar-13 11:24:29

I know it's annoying when other people change their plans which have a direct impact on your childcare arrangements, Frazzle. This is one of my pet bug bears with DS's school, who announce their term dates well in advance but only confirm the inset dates at quite short notice - so careful plans between DH and I about taking leave to cover the holidays go to pot because of random extra days.

Tweet - genuine question: what jobs fit into the short pre-school sessions? I can see that if you work for yourself it is helpful to have a couple of hours to do some things in peace, but otherwise by the time you've dropped off, got to work and got going, it must be time to turn around to pick up?

Tweetinat Sat 23-Mar-13 12:05:22

Families - my preschool offer all day sessions - 9.15 - 3.15 - so in that respect I'm very lucky that I don't have to cram all my work into just a morning/afternoon session (although I can and do on one day a week when they only do a morning session).

As it happens though, I am self employed running a parent and baby type class so I drop DS off at 9.15, get to my venue by 9.30, set up and teach 10-12 and then if it's a half day pick him up at 12.45 after lunch club. On a full day, I then get the afternoons to do paperwork. The difficulty I have, is that although self employed, all my 'mums' pay for the sessions on a termly basis and no one can cover for me, so cancelling a class is a real pain the backside. I would try and reschedule if I can, but only if I can get another session at the preschool.

I agree that if the preschool only did 9.15-12.15 (or round here some do 8.45-11.45!) then a 'regular' job would be much much more difficult to manage. Some friends of mine only get 2 hour afternoon sessions!

FamiliesShareGerms Sat 23-Mar-13 16:25:32

Ah, that makes sense Tweet. Round here it's all morning or afternoon sessions lasting a few hours. Ie long enough to go the doctors, the gym or the supermarket, but not much more

FrazzleRock Sat 23-Mar-13 16:27:54

I manage to work 16 hours a week (Tues, Weds, Thurs) so I have childcare outside school and nursery hours. DS2 starts Reception in Sept so full days and far less childcare costs - Cannae bleedin' wait!

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