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Early Years Education Vouchers
3 and 4 year olds are entitled to 15 hours of free early education each week for 38 weeks of the year.
Your child becomes eligible from 1 September, 1 January or 1 April following their 3rd birthday.
This free early education can now be obtained through childminders, provided they have registered with KCC to offer this additional service, and details can be obtained from Kent Children and Family Information Service.
Childcare tax credits
Working parents may be able to get extra tax credits to help with the costs; this can be up to 70% of your childcare costs, but is dependent on the number of hours you work, and your overall financial situation.
Childcare Vouchers from your employer
Many employers offer a salary sacrifice scheme, where part of your salary is paid directly to a childcare voucher company, meaning you do not pay tax or national insurance on that part of your salary. You then instruct the childcare voucher company to pay your childminder, weekly or monthly. There are several childcare voucher companies, and most childminders are registered with more than one. Contact your HR department for further information.
Childminders will charge an hourly rate per child, and may offer a discounted rate for siblings. Some will charge a different rate for part time hours, or charge a retainer if you only need term time only childcare. Some will include meals and outings in their hourly charge, some will charge extra but this should all be made clear when you speak to each childminder.