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Help with fees

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Childcare costs are a major consideration that many parents need to take into account when choosing which type of childcare to use.

They may be entitled to receive financial assistance, depending on individual circumstances and the ages of their children. Information about a wider range of financial help for parents on a low income is also available on this website.

Help for working parents

If you are a working parent, you could be entitled to Working Tax Credit and extra help towards childcare through Child Tax Credit. To check your eligibility or get a claim pack, visit the HM Revenue and Customs website or phone 0845 300 3900.

Help for lone parents

You can get up to £60 In work credit if you’re a single parent and you stop claiming benefit because you’re starting work or self-employment.

Help for students

Higher education students with dependant children may be able to get help paying for childcare while they study. The amount will depend on whether they have any other income. The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) does not count the childcare grant when it works out benefit entitlement.

If you are studying at a further education college, you may be able to get help from its access fund, subject to your financial circumstances.

Information on all aspects of student support is available from the student support information line on 0800 731 9133.

Help for parents of three and four-year-olds

Free sessions are available at all Ofsted-registered day nurseries, pre-school playgroups and accredited childminders in Medway. For a list of pre-schools, nurseries and accredited childminders in your local area contact the Family Information Service using the details below .

Help from your employer

If you are a working parent, you may able to get help from your employer. Many businesses are beginning to recognise that family-friendly policies are a necessary part of recruiting and retaining their workforce.

To help with the cost of childcare, some employers offer their employees childcare vouchers (pdf 29KB). To download this pdf you will need Adobe Acrobat Reader. If you do not have it on your computer, please use our advice page.

The vouchers are usually offered in return for a reduction in part of your cash salary (sometimes called salary sacrifice). The first £55 per week of a childcare voucher is exempt from both tax and national insurance contribution so long as the voucher is used to pay for registered childcare. If you decide to accept childcare vouchers, this may affect your entitlement to tax credits.

For details of childcare in your area or for further information on Early Years and Childcare, please contact the Family Information Service on 01634 335566 or familyinfo@medway.gov.uk or visit the Family Service Directory.

Find out more about help for working parents.