Fees, Donations and Grants

Early Years Entitlement grant for 3 and 4 year olds.

The 'Universal' Early Years Entitlement (EYE) Grant is available to all parents for 15 hours per week. The grant is paid for 13 weeks of the autumn and summer terms and 12 weeks of the spring term. The grant is paid directly to the Pre-school once you have signed an eligibility form and shown your child’s birth certificate so that we can make your claim.

All children are entitled to receive the 'Universal' Early Years Entitlement grant as detailed in the following table:

Child born between: Will be eligible for 15 Universal EYE hours from:
1st April and 31st August The start of the autumn ‘term’ following their 3rd birthday until statutory school age.
1st September and 31st December The start of the spring ‘term’ following their 3rd birthday until statutory school age.
1st January and 31st March The start of the summer ‘term’ following their 3rd birthday until statutory school age.

From September 2017, some families will also be entitled to the 'Extended' Early Years Entitlement Grant, which provides 15 further EYE hours (subject to the same age criteria above), making 30 hours of grant funding in total. As the Pre-School is open 22 hours a week, you will be able to claim a maximum of 22 hours of grant funding with us. Eligible parents are free to use their remaining hours at other settings.

You can find out if you are eligible for the additional hours by visiting the Childcare Choices website. If you are eligible, you can apply online. You will then be issued with a code which you should provide to us so that we can confirm your entitlement. Codes are valid for 3 months from the date of issue, and you will need to obtain a code before the start of the term in which you wish to claim. You will have to re-confirm your eligibility for the scheme every 3 months.

BANES expect children receiving the Early Years Entitlement grant to attend for at least 70% of their booked sessions, except for exceptional circumstances such as an extended period of ill health. They also expect children to attend regularly on all their booked days. Failure to follow this guidance may result in your child's grant being reduced or stopped, and the Pre-school billing you for the unfunded sessions. 

If your child qualifies for the Early Years Entitlement Grant, and moves to a different setting part-way through the term, we are under no obligation to transfer the grant funding to the new provider. Any transfer will be considered on a case-by-case basis, depending on whether we can fill the vacant place with an appropriate child. This may result in you paying full fees to the new provider until the start of a new term.


Early Years Entitlement grant for 2 year olds.

There is limited EYE funding (15 hours per week) for 2 year olds if their family circumstances meet certain criteria:

  • if they are looked after by their Local Authority.
  • if their families are in receipt of Working Tax Credit and have an annual income of not over £16,190

  • if they have left care through special guardianship or through an adoption or residence order

  • if they have a current statement of special educational needs (SEN) or an education, health and care plan

  • if they attract Disability Living Allowance

  • if their family meets the criteria for Free School Meals (claiming one of the following: Income Support, income-based Jobseeker's Allowance (ESA), income-related Employment and Support Allowance (ESA), support through part 6 of the Immigration and Asylum Act, the guaranteed element of State Pension Credit, or Child Tax Credit and have an annual income of not over £16,190)

If you think you may be eligible, you will need to contact the Bath and North East Somerset Council free school meals team (01225 394317) to check your eligibility for the funding, giving the date of birth and the national insurance number for the parents living in the household.  You will be informed straight away if you are eligible, and they will follow this up with a confirmation letter, and a reference number which must be provided to the Pre-school. You will also need to show us your child's birth certificate, and sign eligibility forms to confirm your child's funding. Where possible, confirmation of two year old funding should be obtained by 15 July if your child is due to start at Freshford Pre-school in September, or 15 November if your child is due to start at Freshford Pre-school in January. Further details of the Early Years Entitlement Grant are available from B&NES Children's Services. 



Our current fees are £5.50 per hour.

The level of any fees is set by the Pre-School Committee and reviewed annually in the light of the Pre-School’s financial position, its future strategic plans and any other relevant economic or social considerations.

Payment of fees should be made termly for bills under £100, or in optional half-termly installments for termly bills over £100. Payment should normally be made by bank transfer, within 1 week of the invoice date. 

Fees can also be paid using employee childcare vouchers or the government's new Tax Free Childcare scheme (more details at the Childcare Choices website), in which case a monthly payment plan can be agreed. There is no reduction in fees for time off taken during term time.

Parents are required to give a half term's notice to reduce the number of sessions attended or terminate their child's place. If parents serve this notice during the Pre-School holidays, they will still be required to give the notice period of the subsequent half term in addition to any notice given during the holiday. If a parent does not give the required notice they will be charged the total cost of their booked Pre-School sessions which they are cancelling up to the half-term (a maximum of 7 weeks), minus any notice period that they may have given. In all circumstances, if a place can be filled sooner with a child from the waiting list, the the notice period will be reduced at the discretion of the Pre-School Committee.


The current level of Early Years Entitlement funding for three and four year olds is insufficient to cover our essential expenditure on staff salaries, hall hire, insurance and basic consumables such as snacks, craft materials, printing, phone expenses, sand and topic resources. Since September 2015, we have asked parents and carers to consider making a donation of £0.50 per grant funded hour. For example, for a child attending the full 15 grant funded hours per week, we would like parents and carers to consider donating £7.50 per week during term time. We must emphasise that this is a voluntary donation, and if you feel unable to contribute the full amount, any donation would be welcomed. Should you feel unable to make any donation, then your child will still receive the same Pre-school experience. The Pre-school committee believes that asking for a donation per grant funded hour is the fairest way of covering our essential costs, as the cost is then spread across all families attending the Pre-school, rather than just those families who need to pay for extra hours over the Early Years Entitlement.